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Chet Holmgren meets with the Magic less than a week before the draft

Chet Holmgren, a former Gonzaga player, ended a multi-day meeting Friday with the Orlando Magic, who have the No. 1 pick in the NBA draft. A source close to Holmgren’s visit said the meetings included interviews and a dinner with team managers. The person spoke on condition of anonymity to The Associated Press because neither side publicly revealed details about the visit.

There are three players who are the clear favorites for the first pick; Holmgren, Jabari Smith of Auburn and Paolo Banchero of Duke. Smith, who is the favorite, worked out for the Magic last week. Banchero looks forward to meeting with the Orlando team in the coming days. Most pundits have the Magic drafting Smith with the No. 1 pick, but Holmgren could have a shot at him.

That the Magic are closely following Holmgren is not a surprise to another former Orlando player. University of Memphis coach Penny Hardaway knows Holmgren well and praises all of his potential. «He is able to compete, he can achieve excellence, he is tough. He blew me away,” said Hardaway, who spent his first six NBA seasons with the Magic.

I see a Kevin Garnett. He handles the ball, he can shoot, he’s capable of making good passes and I’ve always loved his game. He is a great player. I love every part of the game from him. He is simply a winner », recognized Penny. Going by the words of the former Magic legend, Holmgren would be an interesting option for that first-team pick from Florida.

(Photo by Chris Gardner/Getty Images)

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