Magic Basketball: An Orlando Magic blog - Part 185

Jan 20

The Orlando Magic Youth Fund, a McCormick Foundation Fund, distributes $1 million to the Central Florida community

Photo taken by Gary Bassing

Via the Orlando Magic:

The Orlando Magic Youth Fund, a McCormick Foundation Fund (OMYF-MFF), in a surprise ceremony presented checks totaling $1 million to 19 grantee organizations from three counties in Central Florida (Orange, Seminole and Osceola). The presentation of the OMYF All-Star Team was held on Wednesday, January 19 at the Amway Center. The presentation was done in the spirit of the NBA Draft as each non-profit organization was announced and came up on stage to be presented with an OMYF jersey or specialty basketball. Representatives were greeted by Orlando Magic CEO/Vice Chair Bob Vander Weide, Magic President Alex Martins, Magic Community Ambassador Bo Outlaw, Magic Vice President of Community Relations and Government Affairs Linda Landman-Gonzalez and the OMYF team.

With funds raised through OMYF, and the match provided by the McCormick Foundation, a total of $1 million in grants was distributed to these charities. In addition to the OMYF All-Star team announcement, the organizations were recognized at halftime of the Wednesday, January 19 Magic versus Sixers matchup.

After an extensive five-phase process, which began in July of 2010, the beneficiaries were recommended by the OMYF “VIP” Committee and the Advisory Council and then approved by the McCormick Foundation’s Board of Directors.

“We are proud to be able to assist organizations who are in need during these tough economic times,” said Orlando Magic President Alex Martins. “It is only possible through a collaborative effort of the DeVos family, this community, our players, coaches, staff, corporate partners and season ticket holders that we are capable of distributing $1 million this year. Most importantly we want to recognize and thank those who work every day with the youth of our community…they are the true heroes.”

Jan 20

Art of the shot examined on next “Inside the Magic” TV show

Photo by Fernando Medina/NBAE via Getty Images

Via Fox Sports Florida:

FOX Sports Florida’s fourth 2010-11 episode of “Inside the Magic” delves into the logistics of shooting. In a departure from the show’s usual format, this episode features a lively roundtable panel discussion with Ryan Anderson, the Magic’s sharpshooting forward; Matt Guokas, Sun Sports & FOX Sports Florida’s analyst and the franchise’s first coach; Pat Garrity, a former Magic forward who spent 10 years in the NBA accumulating a nearly 40 percent 3-point shooting record; and Richie Adubato, the Magic’s radio analyst, former Magic head coach and a 25-year veteran in pro basketball coaching.

“Inside the Magic: The Art of the Shot” premieres this Friday, January 21 at 10:00 pm ET immediately following the Orlando Magic vs. Toronto Raptors game on FOX Sports Florida.

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The panel attempts to define what it means to be a ‘pure shooter’ as they discuss the physical and mentalaspects of shooting. Viewers will hear what it’s like to have the ‘shooter’s role’ and the different challenges of being a starter vs. a bench player.

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Jan 20

Recap: Orlando Magic 99, Philadelphia 76ers 98 (OT)

Photo by Fernando Medina/NBAE via Getty Images

BOX SCORE

In a crazy game that went down to the wire, the Orlando Magic were able to defeat the Philadelphia 76ers by the score of 99-98 in overtime. When Andre Iguodala knocked down two free-throws to give the Sixers an 89-84 lead with 28 seconds left in the fourth quarter, it appeared as if the Magic were going to lose. But J.J. Redick was able to make a quick layup to cut the deficit to three points, then Lou Williams made one of two free-throws to give Philadelphia a four-point lead. At this point, it’s a two-possession game for the Sixers — by the book. Only a miracle would give the Magic a chance at stealing the game, and they got it. Jason Richardson got the basketball on a handoff pass from Ryan Anderson, then proceeded to attempt a three-pointer at the top of the key. Iguodala, then, did the unthinkable and fouled Richardson on the three. The shot went in, Richardson was able to make the free-throw to convert the four-point play, and Orlando — just like that — got themselves a second chance at a win that seemed improbable merely seconds earlier. Williams missed a game-winning try at the end of regulation, and the Magic were able to hold on in overtime for a victory. Orlando was led by a balanced attack, as six players scored in double-figures. Anderson was a bright spot coming off the bench, finishing with 20 points. Dwight Howard contributed with 18 points, seven rebounds, and two blocks, but shot a dreadful 10-of-22 from the free-throw line and leaving a lot of points out there on the court because of it. Jameer Nelson played well, putting up 16 points, seven assists, and six rebounds. Hedo Turkoglu had 12 points, including two monster dunks that surprised everyone in attendance at the Amway Center. Redick also had 12 points, while Brandon Bass chipped in with 11 points and 10 rebounds.

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Jan 19

Preview: Philadelphia 76ers at Orlando Magic

7:00 EDT | Sun Sports
17-23 @ 26-15
Pythagorean Record: 19-21 Pythagorean Record: 28-13
Pace: 91.3 (19th) Pace: 92.0 (17th)
Offensive Rating: 105.2 (21st) Offensive Rating: 108.1 (11th)
Defensive Rating: 105.7 (14th) Defensive Rating: 102.6 (5th)
Amway Center | Sixers lead season series 1-0

Jan 18

Tuesday’s Magic Word

  • Josh Robbins of the Orlando Sentinel: “Dwight Howard has been the team’s most valuable player. He’s also staked a claim to league MVP honors. The 25-year-old center brought a more serious demeanor to practice this season and — as much as he dislikes talking about it — a more diversified, more patient offensive repertoire. He’s averaging a career-high 22.0 points per game and 13.3 rebounds per game. His defense may have dropped off a bit this season because he’s trying to avoid foul trouble and, consequently, is contesting fewer shots. There are two other concerns: He’s averaging 36.1 minutes per game and has 12 technical fouls. Jameer Nelson receives plenty of criticism from Magic fans, but the diminutive point guard has played an outsized role this season. Nelson is averaging a career-best 6.7 assists per game, and he’s shooting 41.0 percent from 3-point range. He made crucial late-game shots against the New Jersey Nets on Nov. 5, against the Indiana Pacers on Nov. 20 and against the Celtics on Christmas. Yes, Nelson still has significant room to improve as a defender, but this team would have been in trouble without him.”
  • It’s been a crazy first half of the regular season for the Orlando Magic.
  • Charles Barkley on the new-look Magic: “They got more weapons offensively, I think, than any team in the NBA. They got a bunch of guys who can score. You have to take your hat off to Otis Smith, they have a chance now.”
  • Brian Schmitz of the Orlando Sentinel: “The difference between the Magic and the Celtics — be it 2009, 2010 or, most recently, Monday night — is Kevin Garnett. Garnett made the play of the game with 16 seconds left and the Magic trailing 107-104. He swarmed Jameer Nelson and stole the ball before Nelson could throw a bounce pass to Jason Richardson, ending Orlando’s chances. Garnett was playing for the first time since Dec. 29, having missed nine games because of a calf injury. Too bad for the Magic he didn’t take off a tenth game. Garnett has haunted them. With Garnett nursing a knee injury and missing the East Finals in 2009, the Magic won the series to advance to the NBA Finals. But with Garnett back to smother Rashard Lewis in the East rematch, the Celtics dominated the Magic. That stuff is not a coincidence.”
  • According to head coach Stan Van Gundy, the defense needs to improve.
  • Kelly Dwyer of Ball Don’t Lie recaps Orlando’s loss in yesterday’s game.
  • Britt Robson of Sports Illustrated: “With two Defensive Player of the Year awards already under his belt at the age of 25, Dwight Howard is in excellent position to break the record of four shared by Ben Wallace and Dikembe Mutombo, and someday be regarded as second to Bill Russell as the greatest NBA defender of all time. (Russell, of course, retired years before the award was initiated.) Consider that Howard was the youngest to win it two years ago at age 23 (before that it was 24-year-old Michael Jordan in 1988), and that Orlando is structured to maximize his ability to protect the rim, otherwise playing offensive-minded small-ball with prolific scorers. Already Howard’s combination of quickness, strength, instincts and durability put him in select company — Russell, Wallace, Hakeem Olajuwon, David Robinson and Kevin Garnett would be my list — of players who can comprehensively defend a foot or two beyond the paint in all directions. Everyone but Wallace among that quintet has also won an MVP award. As he continues honing his offensive game, Howard, too, should clear a spot on his mantle.”
  • Last night’s matchup between the Magic and Celtics was fun to watch.
  • Orlando’s best lineup, according to adjusted plus/minus, has dissolved due to the blockbuster trades. Rob Mahoney of the New York Times’ Off the Dribble blog wonders if the newcomers can maintain the status quo: “The Magic shook up their roster in December, leaving just two members of their most effective lineup on the team in the process. Dwight Howard and Jameer Nelson seem to be doing just fine without their running mates, but it’s curious that Orlando broke up such an effective unit. That said, what’s interesting about the nature of the Magic’s offense is that almost every player -– save Howard -– is replaceable. Carter, Pietrus, and Lewis are effective players, but eventually Orlando should reach a similar level of statistical effectiveness with some combination of Jason Richardson, Hedo Turkoglu, Brandon Bass, J.J. Redick, and Ryan Anderson filling in alongside Howard and Nelson.”
  • Game notes on the Magic-Celtics instant classic.
  • Does Boston respect Orlando? Matt Moore of CBSSports.com doesn’t think they do.
  • Glen Davis has words for Dwight Howard.

Jan 18

Second Look: Boston Celtics 109, Orlando Magic 106

AP Photo/Winslow Townson

  • Josh Robbins of the Orlando Sentinel: “The Orlando Magic now know what they need to improve: their first-quarter starts and their defense. Both were woefully lacking in their 109-106 loss Monday night to the Boston Celtics at TD Garden. Again. Following an all-too-familiar pattern, the Magic spotted the Celtics an early 10-point lead and allowed the hosts to shoot 60.0 percent from the field. […] The Magic showed plenty of resilience, just as they did throughout their now-concluded road trip, but that toughness didn’t overcome some late heroics by the Celtics’ Big Three of Ray Allen, Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett. Allen sank a magnificent 3-pointer right in front of the Magic bench to put Boston up 102-101 with 2:16 left. Pierce made a 3-point play to break a 104-104 tie with 38.7 seconds remaining. Positioned on the right side of the elbow, Pierce pump-faked to draw Jason Richardson into the air. Pierce released an on-target jumper just before Richardson collided with him.”
  • John Denton of OrlandoMagic.com: “In a classic game with 26 lead changes and 18 ties, it was only fitting that this Orlando-Boston slugfest came down to the final minute. And appropriately enough, the team that has been intact for years (Boston) was better with its execution than the one that was dramatically reconfigured (Orlando) a month ago. Regardless of the reasons for Orlando’s 109-106 loss to Boston, the frustrating final minute from Monday’s epic is sure to stay with the Magic until they get another shot at the rival Celtics again in three weeks.  […] For the Magic (26-15), the loss was the fitting end to a tantalizing, but also somewhat troubling stretch of games. A week ago Orlando was riding a nine-game losing streak, but it dropped three of four games on the trip because it was unable to get stops at big times. New Orleans won in overtime, Oklahoma City shredded the Magic for 125 points and the Celtics often scored at will and shot 60 percent from the field.”
  • Evan Dunlap of Orlando Pinstriped Post: “If you’re Orlando, you can’t feel too terribly about this loss, as you didn’t learn too much new about your team. The positive–and I understand the Magic, who fancy themselves championship contenders, don’t give a rip about “moral victories”–is you managed to take the East’s top team at the NBA’s halfway mark to the final minute in their building. The defense has to improve, sure, but you at least demonstrated you have enough offense, more than enough offense, to challenge Boston on a nightly basis. [Dwight] Howard keys that, as his 33 points against single coverage attests, but the Magic also had four more players score in double-figures. Efficiency is the greater issue. Richardson missed his first five shot attempts before warming up in a major way after halftime, going 5-of-9 from the floor to close the game for 14 points. Ryan Anderson and Brandon Bass, Orlando’s power forwards, combined for 29 points on 9-of-15 shooting, with Anderson drilling his first four three-point tries to shoot Orlando back into the game in the second period.”
  • Gary Dzen of The Boston Globe: “Exhale. Kevin Garnett made a triumphant return to the Celtics lineup tonight, notching 19 points and 8 rebounds as the Celtics defeated the Orlando Magic 109-106 in a wildly entertaining game at TD Garden. In the process, Garnett erased any concerns about rust or about the severity of a leg injury that kept him out for three weeks. With the game tied, Paul Pierce converted a 3-point play with 38.7 seconds left to give the Celtics a 107-104 lead. But in a game with 26 lead changes, that margin seemed anything but safe. On the ensuing Orlando possession, Garnett showed just how powerful his defensive energy can be, stealing the ball from Magic point guard Jameer Nelson and finding Ray Allen up ahead of the field for two free throws that sealed the game. The play was vintage Garnett. The situation called for exactly that.”
  • Steve Bulpett of the Boston Herald: “Nine games and three quarters after he limped off the Palace floor in Auburn Hills, Mich., with what was thankfully just a strained right calf, Garnett was back in the band and he didn’t miss a beat. He led the percussion section with eight rebounds in the 109-106 victory over Orlando, seamlessly adding 19 points. The Celtics were concerned about KG’s conditioning, but in his 31st and final minute on the floor, he roamed far out on the wing and made the steal that essentially ended the game.”

Jan 17

Recap: Boston Celtics 109, Orlando Magic 106

Photo by Elsa/Getty Images

BOX SCORE

The Boston Celtics were able to defeat the Orlando Magic by the score of 109-106 in an instant classic that saw both Eastern Conference heavyweights trade blow after blow until the final buzzer. Paul Pierce’s jumper and the foul, in which he was able to coax Jason Richardson to jump in the air to draw contact, ended up being the difference in the game for the Celtics. Down three points with less than a minute to go, the Magic tried to respond on the ensuing possession but after a missed shot by Hedo Turkoglu, they turned the basketball over and that was it. Boston was led by a balanced attack, as six players scored in double-figures. Aside from Pierce, who was the hero, Ray Allen was the standout player for the Celtics, finishing with 26 points and hitting key shots down the stretch. Orlando was led by a balanced attack as well, with five players scoring in double-figures. Dwight Howard had a monster performance, putting up 33 points and 13 rebounds. Ryan Anderson was, according to Kevin Harlan on the TNT broadcast, a flamethrower off the bench, contributing with 16 points (4-of-6 from three-point range), eight rebounds, and two blocks. Jason Richardson had 14 points and Brandon Bass had 13 points. Turkoglu chipped in with 11 points and seven assists.

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Jan 17

Preview: Orlando Magic at Boston Celtics

8:00 EST | TNT
26-14 @ 30-9
Pythagorean Record: 27-13 Pythagorean Record: 29-10
Pace: 92.2 (18th) Pace: 90.8 (21st)
Offensive Rating: 107.7 (12th) Offensive Rating: 108.8 (10th)
Defensive Rating: 102.0 (3rd) Defensive Rating: 100.5 (2nd)
TD Garden | Magic lead season series 1-0

Jan 17

Monday’s Magic Word

  • Zach McCann of the Orlando Sentinel: “After 14 games, Hedo Turkoglu’s return to the Orlando Magic is widely considered a smashing success. He’s playing smartly and efficiently, thriving in the system that helped him enjoy the best years of his career from 2007-09. Amazingly, though, Turkoglu is playing at a near-all-star level while barely even getting the ball. His usage rate with the Magic this year is 16.8, meaning he’s using approximately 16.8 percent of Orlando’s possessions while he’s on the floor. To be clear, that’s a very, very low usage rate. Nicolas Batum and Omri Casspi are also posting rates of 16.8. Al-Farouq Aminu, Martell Webster and Reggie Williams are a few small forwards being used more than Turkoglu in Orlando. During these 14 games, did you ever think to yourself during a game, “Where’s Turk?” I know I thought that several times, which was a bit odd since he’s playing 34.5 minutes per game. The numbers back up that question.”
  • Head coach Stan Van Gundy talks about the Boston Celtics.
  • Dwight Howard, apparently, can speak Madarin Chinese. Cool.
  • In terms of wins and losses, the Orlando Magic aren’t a consistent franchise.
  • Marc Stein of ESPN.com conducts a Q/A with Howard. Here’s an excerpt from one of the big fella’s answers: “I worked with Hakeem for three days. But I could go work with Michael Jordan and I’m not going to be Michael Jordan, so it didn’t really matter who and how long I worked with somebody. The other things … spending extra time in the gym, going to the gym every night and making a thousand shots before I leave, every time I went overseas [to China, India and Africa] — whatever I did — I finished [the day] with working out in the gym and working on everything. And then just having the confidence to do it in a game. I will give Hakeem and [Magic assistant] Patrick [Ewing] credit for helping me get to where I’m at, but it’s hard work. I put in a lot of work to get to where I’m at.”
  • More from Stein: “If you didn’t believe that overhauled Orlando has to win a championship to keep Dwight Howard committed to staying in the Magic Kingdom, you’re encouraged to visit the Weekend Dime. Answer No. 6 out of 10, specifically.”
  • Kurt Helin of ProBasketballTalk: “They looked pretty good after the big trades, until the defensive stinker against the Thunder last week anyway. This is a team where the front office gets credit for realizing they were not going to win a title with what they had and making a bold move to give them a chance. Whether that roster can get them there remains to be seen, but kudos for taking the shot.”
  • Zach Lowe of The Point Forward wonders if the Magic need to make a change in the starting lineup.

Jan 17

Revisiting Hedo Turkgolu’s Game 7 performance in Boston

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This is, unequivocally, Hedo Turkoglu‘s best game of his career with the Orlando Magic. Ever.

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