Tuesday’s Magic Word | Magic Basketball



Dec 21

Tuesday’s Magic Word

  • Zach McCann of the Orlando Sentinel: “While ESPN analyst Jeff Van Gundy, the brother of [Orlando] Magic coach Stan Van Gundy, admits he’s still a bit undecided on the Orlando Magic’s recent overhaul, he’s confident about one thing: this new Magic team ain’t winning it all. ‘I still don’t think they’re a candidate to reach the finals,’ Van Gundy said. ‘Clearly, Boston and Miami are better with their old team and with their new team. It’ll be interesting to see how it works out, though.’ Orlando’s acquisition of Gilbert Arenas, Hedo Turkoglu and Jason Richardson was certainly bold and ambitious, he said. But there are too many question marks for him to really get behind this team. Does Hedo Turkoglu have anything left? Does the have enough on the perimeter defensively? And Gilbert Arenas? He’s worthy of his own paragraph.”
  • George Diaz of the Orlando Sentinel: “The left ankle sprain to Malik Allen only accelerates the need to swing a deal for a solid backup big man. They Magic are going to get killed in some games because they don’t match-up well size-wise, especially when [Dwight] Howard isn’t around to clean up any mistakes. General Manager Otis Smith was in Atlanta Monday night to watch the game. Maybe he shouldn’t come back until he has signed a 7-footer.”
  • Head coach Stan Van Gundy has his work cut out for him to integrate Gilbert Arenas, Jason Richardson, and Hedo Turkoglu seamlessly into the roster for the Orlando Magic.
  • The Magic are learning on the fly.
  • Orlando has an interest in acquiring Ronny Turiaf from the New York Knicks. Evan Dunlap of Orlando Pinstriped Post explains the appeal: “Turiaf, seven years Battie’s junior, has more upside. His high energy and boundless enthusiasm make him a fan-favorite wherever he goes, but understand he’s more than simply a hustle player: he’s productive, too, converting 59.3 percent of his extremely limited shot attempts–he only uses 9.7 percent of the Knicks’ possessions when on the court–and blocking a shot every 14.7 minutes. Further, he’s an exceptional passer out of the high post and consistently ranks among the league’s best big men in that area.”
  • Don’t expect the Knicks to trade Turiaf, however.
  • Gilbert Arenas is a new man. Marc J. Spears of Yahoo! Sports has the story: ”Not even a 91-81 loss to the Atlanta Hawks could temper Arenas’ enthusiasm about his trade to the Magic. He leaves behind a franchise in Washington that’s in the throes of a rebuilding project, as well as the memories of a firearms violation that stained his career, not to mention his legal record. In return, he joins a team still intent on challenging for a championship – one that is also run by a general manager whom Arenas considers to be the ‘the only person that actually believed in me.’ ”
  • Orlando will need time to figure everything out when it comes to their new acquisitions and current players jelling together. Chris Mannix of Sports Illustrated breaks it down: “Orlando needs practice time. Badly. But with four games this week they won’t get much of it and will have to contend with a murderers’ row of games through Christmas. The Magic will host Dallas (Tuesday), San Antonio (Thursday) and Boston (Saturday). Along with Atlanta that’s four talented, cohesive teams Orlando will be up against as they try to incorporate the new players into the system. Each game will undoubtedly draw a lot of attention, but expectations should be ratcheted down; this Magic team will look markedly different than the one playing in March.”
  • Dwight Howard is optimistic about the new-look Magic.
  • General manager Otis Smith is on the lookout for a back-up center.
  • Matt Moore of CBSSports.com: “It should be noted that the Magic didn’t have time for a practice with the new guys before last night’s game. In reality, not even a walk-through. They simply walked out on the floor and tried to play together. When you consider that, it’s a wonder they were even in this game, much less lost by only ten.”
  • Four NBA scouts talked to Sam Amick of NBA FanHouse before Orlando played last night and gave their opinions on Arenas, Turkoglu, and Richardson joining the team. Three of them gave the move a thumbs up in terms of whether or not the Magic improved their championship chances, while one didn’t. Here’s what one scout had to say: “The first thing that struck me is how it’s so rare, maybe unprecedented, that you get three guys of that quality in a trade. That’s what’s so earth-shattering about it, is the level of talent — all of whom have some issues. […] But just the level of talent acquired is what’s so astonishing to me. I think they came out like bandits. I really do.”
  • A look at Turkoglu traveling with the basketball.
  • Kelly Dwyer of Ball Don’t Lie points out the Magic’s issues in their loss to the Atlanta Hawks: “Jason Richardson had no idea where to go, the screen and roll defense stunk, and Gilbert Arenas shot 2-11.”

great improvment guys.....this a complete turn around from the atlanta game besides the final score.....not to make an excuse but who outside of boston hasnt lost to the mavs