- Zach McCann of the Orlando Sentinel: “It was a pretty basic off-day practice for the Orlando Magic on Thursday. They worked on defending cuts – which was a problem in the first half against Houston – and containing pick-and-rolls for much of the practice. There was a lot of full-court work. And offensively, they worked on their “basic stuff,” Magic coach Stan Van Gundy said. The biggest item of note came after practice ended, when Dwight Howard stayed for about 45 minutes to work on his mid-range jumper with Patrick Ewing (entry pass) and Daniel Orton (rebounding). [...] Van Gundy said he had no problem with Howard’s jumpers against Houston. Howard went 2-for-2 on mid-range jump shots.”
- Brian Schmitz of the Orlando Sentinel: “I watched in open-mouth amazement after Thursday’s practice as Dwight Howard drained shot bank-shot after bank-shot, then made some turnaround jumpers. He worked for about 20 minutes with assistant coach Patrick Ewing and center Daniel Orton, catching and shooting. I’m not crazy about his turnaround J. But anything that doesn’t make him as predictable as he has been in the crowded paint and draws in defenders can’t be all bad.”
- Head coach Stan Van Gundy on Marcin Gortat: “He’s tried to focus on some other things, and making some improvements offensively and things, and that’s fine. But the bottom line is, as he heard last Monday not just from me but from his teammates, is his role is those three things. He needs to defend, rebound and run, and I don’t think his focus was right this week. I’m not in a panic and I’m not angry. I have great faith in him. He’s a smart guy, he plays hard, he knows what we’re doing, and he fits well with us. I don’t have any overriding concern, but he does need to get his focus back to where it needs to be.”
- After undergoing arthroscopic surgery to repair a torn rotator cuff, Schmitz has a greater understanding of Jameer Nelson‘s road to recovery (same injury) when he came back to play in the 2009 NBA Finals.
- Previewing Chris Duhon‘s season with the Orlando Magic.
- Dwight Howard is happy to see Yao Ming on the court.
- Enjoy three-plus minutes of Howard taking AND MAKING jumpshots.
- Ben Q. Rock of Orlando Pinstriped Post: “The Orlando Magic began their preseason Tuesday night in a victory over the Houston Rockets which can alternately be described as thrilling and sloppy. The banner change in their lineup was playing Rashard Lewis at small forward for a majority of his minutes, though he indeed started at power forward. But as I noted yesterday, Lewis was the only player who manned more than one position for Orlando. Which, in turn, got me thinking about the other multi-positional players on the team’s roster, and which two-player combinations might be similarly compelling.”
- Royce Young of CBSSports.com: “There’s only so much Howard can take from three days of training with The Dream. But that’s a whole heck of a lot more knowledge than he had before. Howard may be somewhat transformed this year, but that comes down to him taking the principles he learned with him and continuing to work on them. He can’t expect three days of training to make him into Hakeem Olajuwon. But if Howard starts getting even a little bit of it? Again, oh my.”
- Kurt Helin of ProBasketballTalk thinks Gortat should get the ball a little bit more.
Gortat isn't the type of person to cop an attitude and disrupt locker room chemistry. That's never been his style.
Yeah, no kidding.
@tha truth is…
I can understand Gortat's frustration but at the same time, he's sitting pretty. He's on a title contender and making a nice chunk of change in the process.