Reshaping the Orlando Magic

Now you see me ...: Magic should deal Dwight Howard before he disappears. Jennifer Stewart/US Presswire

Editor's note: Our series this week examines what would happen if five teams decided to start over following seismic personnel shifts before the 2012-13 season. Due to varying factors including age, salaries or expiring contracts, these five teams have decided to begin anew. But such an exercise comes with some rules: 1) assume the lockout cancels the 2011-12 season; 2) the owners get the hard salary cap they desire; and 3) exclude the 2012 NBA draft. Today we start with the Orlando Magic.

A first-round playoff ousting at the hands of the Hawks in 2010-11. Questionable in-season trades for Jason Richardson, Gilbert Arenas and Hedo Turkoglu. And the face of the franchise's future hangs in the balance.

These are your Orlando Magic. With Dwight Howard approaching free agency, it seems like the franchise is heading for potentially massive changes. There could even be some inclinations to blow up the roster and start anew. But while the Magic should seriously consider swapping Howard to ensure some sort of return for their superstar, completely overhauling a young and talented roster might not be necessary. Here's a look at how the Magic can make over their team in a possible post-Howard era.

Step 1: Trade Howard to the Lakers, get rid of Arenas' contract