Magic Basketball: An Orlando Magic blog - Part 146

Apr 12

Orlando Magic to honor fans with Fan Appreciation Night

Photo by Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE via Getty Images

Via the Orlando Magic:

The Orlando Magic will honor their fans when they host Fan Appreciation Night on Wednesday, April 13 as they face the Indiana Pacers in the last regular season game at Amway Center. Tip-off is scheduled for 8 p.m. and doors will open at 6:30 p.m.

Highlighting Fan Appreciation Night will be a jersey presentation to 13 randomly-selected Magic season ticket holders and representatives from 13 community partners, who will each receive an authentic autographed jersey from a Magic player prior to the tip-off of the game. The night will also include a number of activities centered around the fans, including pregame festivities and in-game activities.

Additional highlights include:

  • Amway will have their Mobile Brand Experience (MOBE) on-site at Fan Fest as a thank you to fans for visiting the Amway Center this season. They will be giving out 2,500 co-branded drawstring bags.
  • Dwight 4 MVP t-shirts presented by adidas will be given away to the first 10,000 fans in attendance.
  • A pregame highlight video of the top 10 Orlando Magic plays of the year and a fan highlight video.
  • Ten autographed items will be given away during the game as part of the Magic Text presented by T-Mobile Text2Win Promotion.
  • Gina Marie Incandela will sing the National Anthem and the Orlando Magic Dunking Dancers will be performing at halftime.
  • A halftime presentation to the Aleve-Publix Hustle Player of the Year.
  • Every fan will receive a Dwight 4 MVP Poster presented by Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Florida as they exit.

The 13 community partners who will be receiving an authentic autographed jersey from a Magic player as a sign of thanks from the Magic are: Family Friends United, Center for Drug Free Living Village House Program, House of Freedom, Beta Center, Inc., Hope CommUnity Center, Elevate Orlando, Wake Up Mentoring, Apopka Family Learning Center, Junior Achievement of Central Florida, Great Oaks Village, Boys Town of Central Florida, Center for Multicultural Wellness and Prevention and Helping All Youth Achieve.

Apr 12

Dwight Howard gives Jrue a poster for the holidays

Apr 12

Notes on the Orlando Magic and Atlanta Hawks

Photo by Scott Cunningham/NBAE via Getty Images

Pythagorean wins
The Orlando Magic (4) and Atlanta Hawks (5) will square off in the first round of the 2011 NBA Playoffs. The seeding would indicate this series is evenly matched, but one measure tells a different story.

Orlando has 55 Pythagorean wins on the season, and the Hawks have 17 fewer. Orlando actually has 50 wins during the regular season, and the Hawks have 44. This means Orlando has won 5 fewer games than their point differential would predict, and Atlanta has won 6 more games than their point differential would predict. For comparison, the 4 versus 5 match-up in the Western Conference will feature teams with a difference of one Pythagorean win.

Among other things, Pythagorean wins can be an indication of teams who are over/under performing or teams who have experienced good/bad luck throughout the year.

Chicago has 22 more Pythagorean wins than their first round opponent, Indiana. Miami has 14 more Pythagorean wins than Philadelphia, and Boston has 12 more Pythagorean wins than New York. Atlanta has as many Pythagorean wins as the Pacers, and Orlando is tied with the Celtics. The Lakers and Spurs both have one more Pythagorean win than Orlando. The Bulls lead the NBA with 60 Pythagorean wins.

Win/Loss profiles
The website 82games.com breaks down each teams’ wins by opponent profile. 82games considers teams in the top 10 of a category as good, 11-20 as average, and 21-30 as bad.

Orlando is 15-12 against teams ranked between 11 and 20 in point differential. The Hawks rank 16th in the NBA in point differential. Atlanta is 8-17 against the NBA’s top teams in point differential. The Magic rank 6th in the NBA in point differential.

Orlando is 10-16 against teams ranked in the top 10 in points allowed. The Hawks rank 9th in points against. Atlanta is 10-15 against teams ranking in the top 10 in points allowed. The Magic rank 5th in points against.

Pace
Orlando is 14-16 against the slowest teams in the league. The Hawks rank 27th in pace (possessions per game).

Atlanta is 18-10 against teams that rank between 11-20 in pace. The Magic rank 18th in pace.

Shooting
Orlando is 10-15 against average shooting teams. The Hawks rank 12th in effective field goal percentage.

Atlanta is 9-17 against good shooting teams. The Magic rank 6th in effective field goal percentage.

Turnovers
Orlando is 21-6 against the teams with worst turnover differential in the league. The Hawks rank 25th in this category.

Atlanta is 20-6 against the teams with worst turnover differential in the league. The Magic rank 24th in this category.

Rebounds
Orlando is 20-10 against bad rebounding teams. The Hawks rank 22nd in total rebounding rate.

Atlanta is 18-8 against good rebounding teams. The Magic rank 2nd in total rebounding rate. The Hawks are .500 (26-26) against average and bad rebounding teams.

Apr 11

Recap: Orlando Magic 95, Philadelphia 76ers 85

Photo by Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE via Getty Images

BOX SCORE

Sparked by Dwight Howard‘s return to the starting lineup, the Orlando Magic were able to defeat the Philadelphia 76ers by the score of 95-85 in a game that was more lopsided than the end result indicates. Although the win was meaningless in the sense that the Magic are locked in to the No. 4 seed in the Eastern Conference, it does give them a chance to finish the regular season at 52-30. That would give Orlando a stretch of four seasons under head coach Stan Van Gundy in which they finished with records of 52-30, 59-23, 59-23, and 52-30 — a symmetrical four-year stretch for those that are into that sort of thing. The Magic were led by a balanced attack, as four players scored in double-figures. Howard finished with a modest stat-line of 19 points, 13 rebounds, four assists, two steals, and three blocks but he got the internet abuzz when he posterized Jrue Holiday in the third quarter on a fastbreak, easily one of the best dunks of the year in the NBA. The transition dunk was triggered after Jason Richardson scooped up a loose ball, zipped it up to Jameer Nelson, and from there it was showtime. Nelson eluded Holiday in the open court, then sprinted down the right side and lobbed the basketball up for Howard. For whatever reason, Holiday tried to intercept the pass but it was too late, as Howard caught the ball and dunked on Holiday with such anger, such fury, such hatred, that the crowd at the Wells Fargo Center awoke and responded with emotions involving disbelief and pleasure. For a split second, Holiday shared a timeless moment with Howard that will live on in infamy. Nelson’s return to the Philadelphia treated him well, as he finished with 19 points, seven assists, and two steals. Ryan Anderson continues to play at a high level, contributing with 18 points, 14 rebounds, and two steals in roughly 22 minutes of action coming off the bench as the sixth man. Richardson chipped in with 12 points, five rebounds, and three steals.

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Apr 11

Monday’s Magic Word

  • Josh Robbins of the Orlando Sentinel: “The Orlando Magic almost never hold a shootaround on the day after a game. If they’re in Orlando and are about to play the second leg of a back-to-back, they’ll hold a walkthrough on their Amway Center practice court a few hours before tipoff. If they’re on the road, they’ll assemble in a hotel ballroom around 11 in the morning and go over the keys to that night’s game. That routine changed today even though the Magic faced the Chicago Bulls in a hard-fought game Sunday afternoon in Orlando. Indeed, the Magic originally weren’t scheduled to shoot-around, but Stan Van Gundy decided to bring his players to the Wells Fargo Center, where they worked for almost 80 minutes. So what gives? It’s all about the playoffs. In an effort to prepare for their first-round series against the Atlanta Hawks, the Magic did more today to fine-tune their offense instead of preparing for tonight’s opponent, the Philadelphia 76ers.”
  • Which team poses the biggest threat for the Orlando Magic in the Eastern Conference?
  • J.J. Redick is close to returning for the  Magic.
  • Gilbert Arenas may sit out tonight’s game against the Philadelphia 76ers.
  • Marc Stein of ESPN.com: “Just because he’s not getting my MVP vote doesn’t mean that I won’t take a quick 20 to hat-tip Dwight Howard for joining Hakeem, Barkley and Moses as the only players in the last 30 seasons to average 23 ppg and 14 rpg.”
  • According to Zach Lowe of The Point Forward, Dwight Howard should be the MVP: “I’ve made the case all season, so I won’t belabor it again here. In general terms, Howard has emerged as an elite offensive player, the foundation of Orlando’s offense nearly (but not quite) to the degree that Derrick Rose and LeBron James are to the offenses in Chicago and Miami. His free throw issues and resulting lack of shot attempts in the clutch place him a small notch below the league’s best offensive players, but no one touches him as a defender. No one. That two-way combination, plus his value to an otherwise ho-hum Orlando roster, separates Howard from the field in an award meant to honor an individual’s play over 82 games and not during the final 45 seconds of a game that is happening in the imagination of too many voters.”
  • Chris Mannix and Ian Thomsen of Sports Illustrated are unanimous in their vote for Howard as the Defensive Player of the Year. Here’s what Thomsen had to say about Howard’s wizardry on defense: “Howard has the gaudy numbers and every scout will tell you he has an effect on virtually every defensive possession that finishes in or near the paint. But the most impressive part of Howard’s season is that he has carried a stingy Magic D almost single-handedly. He plays next to an undersized power forward (Brandon Bass), and the defensive skills of the wing players in front of him are average at best. This is an award that, barring injury, Howard should win every year.”
  • Add John Hollinger of ESPN Insider to the MVP tally, as he also declares Howard as the rightful player for the award: “I explained this in a lengthy column earlier this month, and while my logic has clearly displeased certain factions, it hasn’t changed any of the facts. The most notable one is that the three Florida stars — Howard, LeBron James and Dwyane Wade — were the league’s three best in the league by a fair margin, whether you want to use numbers, the much-beloved eye test or any other standard. Howard has no chance in real life, however. For some reason, the concept that the league’s best player could be on an also-ran team remains an insurmountable hurdle (for reference, see also Kobe Bryant in 2006 and Kevin Garnett in 2005).”
  • Life without Howard for the Magic wasn’t easy on Sunday.
  • Kurt Helin of ProBasketballTalk: “Dwight Howard will finish the season averaging more than 23 points and 14 rebounds per game. Last person to do that (via ESPN’s Marc Stein): Hakeem Olajuwon. I’d have him higher, but if he’s not in the top three on your MVP ballot, you’re doing it wrong.

Apr 11

Preview: Orlando Magic at Philadelphia 76ers

7:00 EDT | NBA TV
50-30 @ 41-39
Pythagorean Record: 55-25 Pythagorean Record: 45-35
Pace: 91.4 (17th) Pace: 91.7 (16th)
Offensive Rating: 107.9 (14th) Offensive Rating: 106.8 (19th)
Defensive Rating: 102.2 (3rd) Defensive Rating: 104.9 (9th)
Wells Fargo Center | Magic lead season series 2-1

Apr 11

Lottery player scores big at Orlando Magic game; wins Playoff Fly Away Trip

Photo by Gary Bassing

Via the Orlando Magic:

The Florida Lottery today announced that James Kidd, 46, of Davenport, Fla. is the lucky winner of an Orlando Magic Playoff Fly Away Trip from the final contest of the Lottery’s Orlando Magic Fan Experience Second Chance promotion. During halftime at the Orlando Magic versus the Chicago Bulls game at Amway Center on Sunday, April 10, Kidd and seven other finalists scratched oversized Florida Lottery ORLANDO MAGIC Scratch-Off tickets to win prizes ranging from $500 to the Playoff Fly Away Trip (valued at $3,500).

The Florida Lottery partnered with the Orlando Magic to offer the Orlando Magic Fan Experience Second Chance promotion, which allowed Lottery players and Magic fans the chance to win unique, experiential prizes by entering non-winning ORLANDO MAGIC Scratch-Off tickets on the Lottery’s Web site. Four second chance drawings were held from February 2 to March 23.

During each second chance drawing, two finalists received a pair of tickets to the April 10 Orlando Magic home game. At halftime, the Orlando Magic Dancers led the finalists onto the court where they raced to scratch their oversized ORLANDO MAGIC Scratch-Off tickets to reveal their prizes. Kidd received the Orlando Magic Playoff Fly Away Trip for two, which includes two-night hotel accommodations, round-trip airfare and a pair of tickets to a playoff game.*

Other prizes won in the Orlando Magic Fan Experience Second Chance promotion included VIP experiences such as: a Coaches “Chalk Talk” Experience, the chance to meet an Orlando Magic player or legend, opportunity to serve as honorary Game Captain, a private suite for a game and locker room tours. Also, 680 players won Orlando Magic Fan Packs that included two replica jerseys, two T-shirts, two caps, two rally towels, two team travel bags, two wristbands, two team backpacks and an NBA basketball.

The ORLANDO MAGIC Scratch-Off game allows fans to show their team spirit while having the chance to win up to $100,000. In addition to the top prize, the $5 Scratch-Off game offers cash prizes ranging from $5 to $5,000, and allows players to win up to 12 times on the same ticket. The game has two $100,000 top prizes remaining. The game’s overall odds of winning are one in 4.02.

Apr 11

Orlando Magic and Amway Center take home six Golden Brick Awards

Via the Orlando Magic:

On Thursday, April 7 the Orlando Magic and Amway Center were awarded with six Downtown Orlando Partnership Golden Brick Awards for projects which affected the Downtown Development District. The awards included Interior Projects (courtside club at Amway Center); Public Art (Amway Center Art Collection); Office Building Project (Magic Amway Center offices); Retail (Orlando Magic Team Shop presented by adidas at Amway Center); Restaurant (Jernigan’s at Amway Center); and Public Project (Amway Center-city).

The Golden Brick Awards recognize outstanding contributions to downtown that demonstrate excellence and achievement. For over two decades these awards have been distributed for projects which affect the Downtown Development District.

The Orlando Magic served as the developer of the Amway Center, which hosts major national events, concerts and family shows. Opened in the fall of 2010, the facility is owned and operated by the City of Orlando on behalf of the Central Florida community.

The Amway Center was designed to reflect the character of the community, meet the goals of the users and build on the legacy of sports and entertainment in Orlando. The building’s exterior features a modern blend of glass and metal materials, along with ever-changing graphics via a monumental wall along one façade. A 180-foot tall tower serves as a beacon amid the downtown skyline. At 875,000 square feet, the new arena is almost triple the size of the old Amway Arena (367,000 square feet). The LEED Gold certified facility features a sustainable, environmentally-friendly design and unmatched technology, featuring 1,100 digital monitors, the tallest high-definition videoboard in an NBA venue and multiple premium amenities available to all patrons in the building.

Every level of ticket buyer has access to: the Budweiser Baseline Bar and food court, Gentleman Jack Terrace, Jernigan’s, Nutrilite Magic Fan Experience, Orlando on Demand, STUFF’s Magic Castle presented by CLUB WYNDHAM® and multiple indoor-outdoor spaces which celebrate Florida’s climate.

Apr 11

Orlando Magic teams up with KaBoom! to build playground in a day

Photo by Gary Bassing

Via the Orlando Magic:

On Friday, April 8, more than 300 volunteers from Amway, the Orlando Magic and Orlando Neighborhood Improvement Corporation, along with organizers from KaBOOM! and residents of Maitland Oaks Apartments joined forces to build a new playground at the Maitland Oaks Apartment complex. The new playground’s design is based on drawings created by children who participated in a Design Day event in February. The new playground will provide hundreds of children in the local community with a safe place to play. Currently, the children who live at Maitland Oaks Apartments do not have a playground within walking distance to enjoy.

The playground is the 11th built by KaBOOM! and Amway and the seventh with the Orlando Magic in an effort to fight the play deficit and save play. The project is one of more than 200 playground builds KaBOOM! will lead across the country in 2011 in an effort to provide a great place to play within walking distance of every child in America.

Apr 11

Recap: Chicago Bulls 102, Orlando Magic 99

AP Photo/John Raoux

BOX SCORE

Taking advantage of the absences of Dwight Howard and Quentin Richardson, the Chicago Bulls were able to defeat the Orlando Magic by the score of 102-99. The Magic, which were short-handed, played with energy and effort consistently throughout the day but it wasn’t enough against the Bulls. With Chicago leading by one point at 98-97, Orlando fouled Taj Gibson with 14.2 seconds left and put him on the free-throw line. Gibson split the free-throws, but Luol Deng was able to retrieve the offensive rebound after the second free-throw came up short. It was a bad bounce for the Magic and the Bulls were able to take advantage, as Derrick Rose made two free throws to extend the lead to four points. On the ensuing possession, Jason Richardson, after tripping on the original out-of-bounds play drawn up by head coach Stan Van Gundy, recovered and made a three-pointer with 2.7 seconds left to cut the deficit to one point. This was only after Ryan Anderson was able to feed Richardson with the basketball on a offensive rebound following a missed three-point shot by Jameer Nelson in the corner. Rose made two more free-throws to give Chicago a three-point lead. On the final possession of the game, Nelson got the ball at the top of the key, pump-faked Rose to get him in the air and create an open look, then put up a three-pointer which he made but it was too late. The Bulls escaped with the win. Three players led the way for Orlando. Anderson, playing in place of Howard, put up a career-high 28 points and 10 rebounds. Richardson finished with 24 points, while Nelson contributed with 17 points, 11 assists, five rebounds, and three steals.

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