DeQuan Jones Opens Eyes In First Game

While much of the attention in summer league and training camp was focused on drafted rookies Andrew Nicholson and Kyle O’Quinn, it was undrafted rookie DeQuan Jones who opened eyes in Sunday’s first game for the Magic.

The 6-foot-8, 221-pound small forward had eight points and two steals in Sunday’s game while playing 23 minutes. He earned Vaughn’s trust with his willingness to defend and he also electrified the crowd in Mexico City with two thunderous dunks. The University of Miami product knows that he is in a fight for a roster spot as an undrafted player with no contractual guarantees. A high flyer, Jones has worked hard to show the coaching staff and management that he can be an asset to the Magic by doing the dirty work and offering up hard-nosed defense.

``I’m just trying to be a utility guy and on our defensive rotations really be aware and be a stopper for our team,’’ Jones said. ``I’m out there trying to utilize my athleticism to help this team anyway that I can.’’

Jones said it dawned on him during Sunday’s game as he was making his NBA debut that he was living out his dream. He is hoping that he will get enough opportunities throughout the preseason to show the coaches that he deserves a spot on the roster. ``It was a great experience for me and I was just appreciative more than anything,’’ Jones said of his debut. 11I just appreciated being out there and tried to give my all to give the team whatever I could. I’ve just got to keep it up.’’

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