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Paolo Banchero was the top pick in the NBA draft. Most of his teammates are watching him.

The Magic were up by 18 points with less than five minutes to go in the fourth quarter of the Las Vegas Summer League.

The Kings hit a 3-pointer from the top of the key to cut the Magic's lead to three. The crowd at the Thomas & Mack Center is anxious for what could be the final play in an exciting game in which the top pick has battled against the fourth pick.

Cheering from courtside are some of the top picks in the upcoming NBA draft.

A group of current Magic players went to Las Vegas to see the rookies opening act. All but one of the players on the summer league team played in the desert. The bonds of a team that had already developed solid relationships off the floor were strengthened by the arrival of Banchero.

The second-year Magic coach was texting with his players about how special it was.

Back on the floor, Banchero jabs left on the inbound, trying to create even a modicum of space from Murray and his 6-foot-11 wingspan. Ade Murkey makes a play on the pass. Murray got the ball after a free-for-all.

He is going to the 3-point line. Murray pump-fakes and the 6-foot-10 forward and the former Iowa wing both bite, before Murray hoists the potential game-tying 3. The game is Murray's to lose.

The ball falls into Banchero's hand. He walks down the floor. Being present for the early moments is important for Anthony, who had been bouncing in his seat in excitement. When some of his older teammates watched him at summer league, the third-year guard knew how important it was to him.

He says that they are a part of the family.

The Magic, who have been to the playoffs only twice since the end of the 2012 season, have received a shot of energy thanks to the arrival of Banchero.

Many of the veteran players made it clear to the coaching staff that they were ahead of their coach when they were texting to set up a team dinner.

The guys came in and said they would be there on the 7th for the first game of the summer league. "For them to sit with each other, be with each other, laughing and joking, talking about what they want to do, being around each other is something special to me."

Everywhere Paolo Banchero goes -- on and off the floor -- almost all eyes are focused on him. It's a spotlight he admits he's still adjusting to. Photo by Jim Poorten/NBAE via Getty Images

For anything else. Immediately after the NBA commissioner calls his name for the draft, intense scrutiny begins. Often before that.

He admits he is still adjusting to it.

A year and a half ago, he was a high school student. I was not used to that. It's changed now.

It's an adjustment because of the young star's one and only season at Duke, which doubled as Hall of Fame coach Mike Krzyzewski's last season on campus.

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While the basketball world is interested in seeing how Banchero will fit as a focal point of this team, the 19-year-old is already a face of the long-struggling franchise.

"I really think that we're going to do it by a committee, honestly," he said. You should look at the Warriors. You can see Milwaukee and Memphis. The committee in which they do it has something that makes it special. There are other guys who are holding each other accountable. One man will speak up and do it in a different way.

Each guy is going to have a different type of voice on a different night.

It's a model that he hopes to build with his young team, one in which no one player shoulders too much of the load.

One of the practice drills the Magic staff put the team through in Vegas involved each player getting a chance to lead the offense, putting his teammates in what he believed were the right positions.

Each player was allowed to use their voice in the leadership role on the court.

Everybody knows how Draymond Green ties and glues that team together. When Curry does, it speaks volumes. "We want to build our guys in that regard where there's such a chemistry, and then as guys rise and they get their voice and they get that feel of leadership, they start to stand up."

The rookies out of Duke will play an important role in the team.

Anthony knows what Banchero means to the organization and the city that hasn't been relevant to the league since the departure of Howard.

"I've been in the gym with him a little bit already, just doing what he does," Anthony says, dressed in a T-shirt celebrating O' Neal's tenure on it. He's going to be helpful to us. We can start building something now.

Several Orlando Magic players, including 2020 first-round pick Cole Anthony, came to watch No. 1 pick Paolo Banchero in the team's summer league games. Photo by Garrett Ellwood/NBAE via Getty Images)

Back in the Thomas & Mack Center, Anthony, Harris and Suggs stood on the sidelines and held up their cell phones. The Magic and Kings are going to enter the most exciting period in summer league: sudden-death double OT.

The entire arena is watching this moment.

On the third possession of the overtime period, Banchero dribbles down the middle of the court, where he is met by Murray.

Every move is wired into the lower bowl.

When the crowd claps and stands up when you have the ball, it's just added intensity. In the arena where the crowd's eyes are on you, it's just like that. You just want it to happen. That is what I want.


Emanuel Terry was the winner of the sudden-death overtime.

The Kings poked the ball away from Banchero but he recovered quickly and was swarmed by Murray. The ball is above the man's head and he scans the floor for a teammate.

The entire Kings defense fixes on him, which allows Terry to slip free under the basket. Terry lays it in for the win after Banchero skips a pass over to him.

As the Magic storm the court to celebrate, Banchero sprinted towards Terry. Anthony joined his teammates to surround Banchero and the young Magic players.

They're tied together. The great part about it is that. All these guys are organic. They are always around each other. It's because they are all good kids that like being around each other.

In two games, Banchero racked up 40 points, 12 assists, 10 rebound and 10 turnovers. He helped unify a group that believes a winning record and a return to the NBA's main stage is in its future.

Anthony says that the child is talented. He is a big fan of the game." I think he's going to be great.

Andrew Lopez was a contributor.