It's one thing when a young player replaces a well-worn veteran for a rebuilding team.
It's quite another when a younger player replaces a young player for a rebuilding team.
About time for the Magic to start newcomer Tobias Harris, 20, over Andrew Nicholson at the power-forward spot.
Andrew is pretty much over the hill at 23, anyway.
After all, Harris had played four games before the club hosted the Memphis Grizzlies on Sunday night — and hadn't laid an egg yet. Let's emphasize the yet.
He came into the night averaging 20 points and 7.3 rebounds per game, shooting a stunning 70 percent — on all varieties of shots.
If it's up to Magic fans, there's not a second to waste in seeing more of Harris.
Harris makes the future seem not so far away, even if it is: Memphis 108, Orlando 82. He's a shiny new toy in town, seldom used in Milwaukee. And he's the curious consolation prize that the club received for trading the beloved J.J. Redick.
Then again, no one had seen his warts yet. This is your spoiler alert.
Harris is a better athlete than Nicholson, which is no surprise. Coach Jacque Vaughn calls Nicholson "YMCA" because he has an old man's game, complete with scoop shots and waddles more than runs. Tobias is also a better rebounder than Andrew.
The question is if Tobias can be as efficient as YMCA over the long haul.
Harris entered the game against Memphis late in the first quarter to a nice ovation. Then he promptly turned over the ball and committed a foul at the other end. OK, there are warts.
Harris is not shy about taking shots, and spent the first half misfiring, going 2-of-10. No other player on the floor had more attempts. That kind of display will get you buried on the bench with the Bucks — and the Magic.
Certainly, an off-night was coming.
Harris finished 3-of-14 for just six points against the Grizzlies, one of the league's top defensive teams.
Still, he has been forcing his way onto the floor, taking minutes from his new teammates. He has siphoned playing time from Nicholson since his first game in a Magic uniform on Feb. 23 against the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Harris can play either power forward or small forward — a blessing and a curse. He's a 'tweener, but I doubt he'll be eating away at small forward Maurice Harkless' minutes. The Magic want as much seasoning as possible for him, starting him the last 17 games.
Vaughn said the other day that Harris "hasn't taken away from the guys who've been here, whether Drew's starting."
Of course, that's not exactly true. He has definitely taken some of Nicholson's minutes as Drew played about only five minutes in the second half against the Rockets on Friday night while Harris played nearly 19.
Vaughn protects youngsters like Nicholson. He said Harris' presence "has not stunted his growth. [Harris] is just adding to our nucleus and to our core and so it's good to see him have success and it's good to see his teammates accept him."
Vaughn is not opposed to switching up his rookies. He sat Harkless for a stretch this season and limited Nicholson's time during a period in late January.
Nicholson was coming off the bench when Glen Davis was healthy. He's mature and poised, and returning him to a back-up likely will not affect him.
What Vaughn should do is determine playing time between Nicholson and Harris based on which guy plays the better defense — a glaring weakness throughout the whole team.
When Vaughn was asked if Harris might crack the starting lineup, he was vague and evasive.
He said, "We're just going to integrate Tobias" into the game-plan.
Vaughn was right about one thing: "We lead the league in lineups."
The Magic have used 19 different lineups. Does it matter if another one includes Tobias Harris for a look-see?