Michigan's Jon Teske signs deal, will head to camp with Orlando Magic

James Hawkins
The Detroit News

Jon Teske will get his chance to make an NBA roster.

The former Wolverines center signed a contract and will be “heading to preseason camp” with the Orlando Magic, the Michigan basketball program announced on Friday.

Teske’s signing comes one day after teammate Zavier Simpson inked an Exhibit 10 contract — which is essentially a training camp deal — with the defending champion Los Angeles Lakers. Both went unselected in Wednesday’s NBA Draft.

Jon Teske, right, played a larger offensive role his senior year under coach Juwan Howard.

Teske spoke with at least eight teams during the pre-draft process, according to his agent Aaron Turner, and was viewed as someone who would get an opportunity to make an impression with a team at camp given his 7-foot-1 size, pick and roll/pop prowess and ability to defend in ball screen coverages.

Teske saw his offensive production increase throughout his four-year career. Last season, he took on a larger role under coach Juwan Howard and averaged 11.6 points, 6.7 rebounds and 1.8 blocks in 27.9 minutes per game.

According to Turner, Teske has focused on becoming more athletic — he dropped roughly 20 pounds of “bad weight,” Turner said — and improving his 3-point shot. He shot 27.1% from beyond the arc during his time at Michigan.

Teske could potentially serve as a 3-and-D big man who can help stretch the floor and protect the paint, but the key will be his development as a perimeter shooter.

“I think he's got a real good shot (to make an NBA roster),” Turner said this week. “Honestly, he just has to make NBA 3s at a good clip. If he does that, I think he'll make it."

The Magic have three centers under contract for the 2020-21 season in Nikola Vucevic, Mohamed Bamba and Khem Birch, who are all returning players. Vucevic was the starter and team's leading scorer (19.6 points) last season, with Bamba and Birch serving as backups.

NBA training camps will open on Dec. 1.


Twitter: @jamesbhawkins