- Josh Robbins of the Orlando Sentinel: “A situation like this is a main reason why the Orlando Magic signed Quentin Richardson over the summer. Stan Van Gundy said following the team’s shootaround at AT&T Center a few moments ago that Richardson likely will guard Manu Ginobili when the Magic tip-off against the San Antonio Spurs tonight. Ginobili, a 6-foot-6 wing, leads his team in scoring, averaging 20.0 points per game. Mickael Pietrus likely will guard Ginobili when Richardson is out of the game. [...] Ginobili averaged 30.5 points per game in two contests against the Magic last season.”
- Zach McCann of the Orlando Sentinel: “Much has been made of Dwight Howard’s work with Hakeem Olajuwon over the summer, a three-day training session that’s at least partially the reason for Howard’s improved offensive game. But Howard isn’t the only Magic player who learned from Olajuwon this summer. Rashard Lewis also trained with Olajuwon this summer, focusing on improving Lewis’ footwork and post-game. Lewis expected to play more small forward this season, which would mean more post opportunities while matched up against smaller defenders.”
- Brian Schmitz of the Orlando Sentinel answers questions for Magic fans.
- Paul Forrester of Sports Illustrated conducts a Q/A with Rashard Lewis. A must-read. Here’s an excerpt: “[Playing small forward is] easy to remember; it’s almost like riding a bike. Offensively, it’s pretty easy, but on defense I had to learn how to get back to slowing guys on the perimeter. Even more difficult is slowing guys in the pick-and-roll and when guys are getting screens. I’m not used to guys coming and setting screens on me. Playing the 4 used to mean a guy calling out the screen, me jumping out and showing, then trying to stop the guard and getting back. With your back to the basket, you have to listen to the screens getting called out and react that way. Getting through those has been an adjustment.”
- John Denton of OrlandoMagic.com: “Like Duncan, Howard knows that his legacy will be dependent more so on his championship hardware than any rebounding titles or dunk contests awards. Howard looks at a center like Duncan who is nearing the twilight of his career and knows that now is his time to grab the NBA by the throat and strangle every bit of success out of it as possible. Criticized at times for his playful nature, Howard turned serious this season as he chases a championship. And he became a student of the low-post game in the offseason, doing more listening than talking, more thinking than laughing. He drilled with Hakeem Olajuwon and Karl Malone on the court, and away from it listened to words of wisdom from seasoned big men like Dikembe Mutombo and Tony Battie.”
- Penny Hardaway wants to make a comeback in the NBA.
- Ben Golliver of CBSSports.com says it best about Hardaway. “What could have been.”
- How does a regular human being compare to an elite athlete like Dwight Howard?
- Austin Burton of Dime Magazine: “What really stands in Penny’s way is the history of injuries (six knee surgeries) and the simple reality that once you’re out of the NBA, it’s a hell of a lot harder to get back in. That’s why there are 100 players floating around the Euroleague who are better than Brian Cook or more durable than Bobby Simmons, but can’t get a spot in the League because those aforementioned two keep getting work. Penny may have just been gone too long.”