Reaction: Orlando Magic 107, Portland Trail Blazers 104 | Magic Basketball

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Jan 12

Reaction: Orlando Magic 107, Portland Trail Blazers 104

AP Photo/Rick Bowmer


Orlando Magic 107 Final
Recap | Box Score
104 Portland Trail Blazers

Dwight Howard
5-9 FG | 3-12 FT | 4 AST | 13 REB | 13 PTS | +6

With the Magic getting plenty of scoring from the supporting cast, Howard didn’t have to carry a heavy load offensively. Orlando ran a heavy dose of 4-out/1-in offensive sets for the big fella throughout the game, either allowing him to create for himself or his teammates. Some of his assists were direct results of kick-out passes from the post for spot-up threes.

Ryan Anderson
6-11 FG | 4-7 3P | 1 STL | 9 REB | 16 PTS | +13

In the fourth quarter, the Portland Trail Blazers elected to go small with a 5-man unit of Jamal Crawford, Wesley Matthews, Nicolas Batum, Gerald Wallace, and LaMarcus Aldridge. As a result, Anderson didn’t play in the period but when he was in the game, he was productive. He rebounded well and led Orlando with four three-pointers, though his defense on Aldridge could have been better.

Hedo Turkoglu
6-11 FG | 4-6 3P | 6 AST | 3 REB | 16 PTS | +2

Turkoglu was huge for the Magic in the fourth quarter as the Blazers made a furious run. Turkoglu ran a 3/5 pick-and-roll with Howard on consecutive possessions late in the period, making a layup and three-pointer. Those five points allowed Orlando to increase their lead from three to eight with less than two minutes remaining in the game. Turkoglu is fortunate his brilliance wasn’t undermined.

Jameer Nelson
7-9 FG | 2-2 3P | 5 AST | 4 REB | 16 PTS | +4

This is going to sound like a broken record but when Nelson goes, so go the Magic. He was aggressive on offense, looking for his shot throughout the game and aiding Orlando in their scoring barrage in the first three quarters. However, he made two mental errors late in the fourth quarter, turning the basketball over twice and almost costing the Magic the game.

Portland Trail Blazers

Yes, Orlando was playing on two days rest and yes, Portland was playing on a back-to-back. That being said, the Blazers didn’t look like a team with weary legs, as exhibited by their comeback in the fourth quarter. Crawford seems to enjoy tormenting the Magic, as he was excellent coming off the bench. Aldridge was equally superb. If only Portland had a healthy Greg Oden.

Eddy Rivera is the Editor-in-Chief of Magic Basketball. Follow him on Twitter.

2 comments
CarloSimone
CarloSimone

I agree with all of this though I do see one issue with Ryan. Some of our players are comfortable with shooting and driving though they may sometimes get confused with which they should be doing at any given time. Ryan on the other hand looks completely lost when he decides to drive or draw a foul. There were a few instances where he just looked very awkward going to the basket. That's a wrinkle offensively that he can try to develop in the future. Also on defense, he really needs to learn how to take a charge better. There were a few times when he was in position but he fouled instead because he tried to aggressively meet the ball handler. Still, he played a solid game overall.

erivera7
erivera7 moderator

@CarloSimone Ryan is typically good at taking charges. I remember one play where he simply forgot to flop. Sounds silly, but have to do it to sell a charge.