Magic Basketball: An Orlando Magic blog - Part 24

Jan 22

Video: The steal, the dunk, the foul

Jan 22

Preview: Atlanta Hawks at Orlando Magic

Essentials

  • Teams: Atlanta Hawks at Orlando Magic
  • Date: January 22, 2014
  • Time: 7:00 p.m.
  • Television: Fox Sports Florida
  • Arena: Amway Center

Records

  • Hawks: 21-19
  • Magic: 11-31

Probable starters

Hawks:

  • Jeff Teague
  • DeMarre Carroll
  • Kyle Korver
  • Paul Millsap
  • Pero Antic

Magic:

  • Jameer Nelson
  • Victor Oladipo
  • Arron Afflalo
  • Tobias Harris
  • Glen Davis

Advanced stats

Hawks:

  • Pace: 94.8 (13th of 30)
  • Offensive Rating: 106.4 (13th of 30)
  • Defensive Rating: 105.3 (12th of 30)

Magic:

  • Pace: 93.9 (16th of 30)
  • Offensive Rating: 100.4 (27th of 30)
  • Defensive Rating: 106.7 (17th of 30)

Read about the Hawks

HawksHoop

Jan 22

Five reasons to be happy in Magic kingdom

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Photo by Fernando Medina/NBAE via Getty Images

The Magic ended a 10-game losing streak against the Celtics this past weekend, a streak which dated back to 2013. That’s a long stretch to go winless, and Magic fans are predictably perturbed. But this most recent losing streak shouldn’t make the fanbase catatonic with woe, since there’s a solid reason they were losing a lot: they’re not very good.

A string of losses can be tough for fans, obviously, but this is a unique situation with so many talented college players possibly entering the draft this summer. The Magic had the NBA’s worst record last year, and in turn they got Victor Oladipo in the 2013 NBA Draft.

Oladipo is one of five reasons Magic fans should still be happy right now.

21-year-old Victor Oladipo
‘Dipo is better than Alex Len, who’s only claim to fame is antagonizing the normally light-hearted Swaggy P. The guard out of Indiana is better than Otto Porter and Anthony Bennett (on that latter point, the poor Canadian is on pace to become the worst No. 1 pick in history).

‘Dipo is faster than a hiccup, as Jameer Nelson recently noted, and when seeing him in person, you’re struck by how much bigger and athletic he is when compared to watching him on TV, like a boulder of energy rather than simply a ball. He makes you gasp sometimes, with athleticism that’s like gunpowder waiting for a spark.

So cheer up, the Magic have basically won the 2013 NBA Draft — with their only competition coming from Philly’s Sam Hinkie, a benevolent Bond villain, with an exciting, lengthy point guard in Michael Carter-Williams. But if MCW is the best rookie this season, ‘Dipo is 1B in that discussion. Feel free to add Trey Burke to the mix if you’d like.

Read the rest of this entry »

Jan 22

Grades: Brooklyn Nets 101, Orlando Magic 90

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Photo by Reid Kelley/NBAE via Getty Images

 

Brooklyn Nets 101 Final
Recap | Box Score
90 Orlando Magic

Arron Afflalo
4-9 FG | 2-4 FT | 1 STL | 2 REB | 11 PTS | -21

With the way Joe Johnson had been playing lately, you knew it was going to be a tough matchup for Afflalo but he managed to keep Joe Jesus in check. However, Afflalo couldn’t get anything going offensively himself, as Johnson’s length served as a deterrent. It was as if Afflalo was trying to score over Brazil’s famous Christ the Redeemer statue.

Kyle O’Quinn
6-10 FG | 3-6 FT | 2 BLK | 8 REB | 15 PTS | +3

The more O’Quinn plays, the more mind-boggling it gets that Jason Maxiell has logged more minutes than him this season. O’Quinn has made it clear that he deserves to be the backup center for the Magic. His back-to-back blocks on Shaun Livingston and Paul Pierce late in the first quarter shows the kind of defensive impact he can make when he gets playing time.

E’Twaun Moore
5-8 FG | 1-1 FT | 2 REB | 2 AST | 13 PTS | +3

Moore had his best game of the season, but that’s not saying much. First, he’s a bad player so the benchmark for him is low. Second, 10 of his 13 points came in the fourth quarter during garbage time when the game was already decided. It’s on Moore to play like this when the games matter, which he struggles to do.

Victor Oladipo
3-9 FG | 3-4 FT | 6 REB | 5 AST | 10 PTS | -24

No 360 dunk for Oladipo against the Nets this time around. The most dramatic thing that Oladipo did against Brooklyn came in the game’s opening minutes when he made a 3-pointer by getting a friendly roll on the rim. Given Orlando’s inability to score at times, it would have behooved Oladipo to attack the basket and get to the free throw line more but that didn’t happen.

Brooklyn Nets

After a close first half, Brooklyn’s defense manhandled the Magic in the third quarter. Orlando shot 3-for-21 from the floor (14.3 percent) and the Nets were able to increase a 4-point halftime lead to 19 in the period before coasting the rest of the way. With the win, Brooklyn is 8-1 in 2014 and steadily moving up the standings in the Eastern Conference.

Jan 21

Preview: Orlando Magic at Brooklyn Nets

Essentials

  • Teams: Orlando Magic at Brooklyn Nets
  • Date: January 21, 2014
  • Time: 7:30 p.m.
  • Television: Fox Sports Florida
  • Arena: Barclays Center

Records

  • Magic: 11-30
  • Nets: 17-22

Probable starters

Magic:

  • Jameer Nelson
  • Victor Oladipo
  • Arron Afflalo
  • Tobias Harris
  • Glen Davis

Nets:

  • Shawn Livingston
  • Alan Anderson
  • Joe Johnson
  • Paul Pierce
  • Kevin Garnett

Advanced stats

Magic:

  • Pace: 94.1 (16th of 30)
  • Offensive Rating: 100.3 (26th of 30)
  • Defensive Rating: 106.7 (18th of 30)

Nets:

  • Pace: 91.3 (26th of 30)
  • Offensive Rating: 105.1 (18th of 30)
  • Defensive Rating: 108.5 (26th of 30)

Read about the Nets

Brooklyn’s Finest

Jan 21

Magic to honor Bo Outlaw on January 24

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Photo by Fernando Medina/Orlando Magic

Via Orlando Magic press release:

In continuation of the Orlando Magic’s 25th anniversary season-long celebration the team will honor former Magic forward and current community ambassador Bo Outlaw at the Magic’s January 24 matchup vs. the Los Angeles Lakers, tip-off set for 7 p.m. The night will feature a center court presentation at the end of the first quarter. Outlaw will join FOX Sports Florida’s broadcasts including Magic Live pregame show with hosts Paul Kennedy and Nick Anderson and join broadcasters David Steele and Jeff Turner for a portion of the game broadcast. He will also be featured on Magic Drive Time radio show with host Dante Marchitelli on Thursday, Jan. 23 at 5:30 p.m. on 740 The Game. In addition, the first 2,500 fans will receive a collectible 8×10 photo featuring Outlaw and Ronnie Price. Outlaw will be available to the media at 6 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 24 in the Amway Center interview room.

“Legends Nights” is an on-going program which will honor former players throughout the Magic’s Silver Season. Past honorees include Tracy McGrady, Nick Anderson, Pat Williams, Jimmy Hewitt, Dennis Scott, Pat Garrity and Horace Grant. In addition to the Magic’s “Legends Nights,” the 2013-14 season will feature the Silver Ticket Sweepstakes and Scratch Off Promotion, special appearances, game entertainment and other events throughout the season.

A 14-year NBA veteran, Outlaw played in 914 career NBA regular season games with the L.A. Clippers, Orlando, Memphis and Phoenix. He spent six-plus seasons (360 games-222 starts) with the Magic from 1997-2001 and 2005-07. He ranks on the Magic’s all-time career lists in blocked shots (third, 536), rebounds (fifth, 2,160), steals (seventh, 401) and games played (ninth, 360). While with the Magic, he averaged 6.3 ppg., 6.0 rpg., 2.2 apg., 1.1 spg. and 1.5 bpg. in 26.8 mpg. Outlaw was also recognized for his outstanding work in the Central Florida community winning the Rich and Helen DeVos Community Enrichment Award three times (1998-99, 2005-06, 2006-07). He is one of only two players in team history to accomplish that feat.

Jan 20

Monday’s Magic Word

  • ESPN ran a mock draft lottery with the Orlando Magic selecting Marcus Smart with the No. 4 pick in the 2014 NBA Draft. However, the experts are divided over whether or not Smart is best suited to play alongside Victor Oladipo.
  • The Magic snapped a 10-game losing streak with their win over the Boston Celtics on Sunday.
  • Orlando is on pace not to appear on national television this season.
  • With the Magic officially at the halfway point of the regular season, Orlando Pinstriped Post takes an in-depth look at where the team currently stands.
  • Chad Ford of ESPN Insider: “While Victor Oladipo continues to have his moments (like a 35-point performance against the Bulls on Wednesday) and Nikola Vucevic has been good when he’s been healthy, the Magic don’t have a lot of building blocks after that. Expect them to be very active at the trade deadline trying to package away their remaining veterans with some of their younger players who haven’t really worked out.”
  • Oladipo’s 35-point barrage against the Chicago Bulls on Wednesday was the most points scored by a rookie this season.
  • With the trade deadline steadily approaching, it’ll be interesting to see what type of offers, if any, the Magic will get for veterans like Glen Davis.
  • Zach Harper of CBSSports.com with a midseason report on Orlando: “They’re 11-30, which puts them with the second-worst record in the NBA. That’s bad. But it’s not all bad. The Magic are clearly in the process of a rebuild and nothing would be as welcome as Andrew Wiggins or Jabari Parker added to a core of Victor Oladipo and Nikola Vucevic. It would be nice to see this young roster start to take gradual steps forward and win a few games more consistently, but right now for the Magic, losing is still winning.”

Jan 20

Grades: Orlando Magic 93, Boston Celtics 91

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Photo by Fernando Medina/NBAE via Getty Images

 

Orlando Magic 93 Final
Recap | Box Score
91 Boston Celtics

Arron Afflalo
7-16 FG | 4-5 FT | 13 REB | 6 AST | 20 PTS | -2

It wasn’t Muhammad Ali-Joe Frazier, but Afflalo and Jeff Green had themselves quite the duel that went into a frenzy in the last minute of the game. Afflalo and Green both made layups while defending each other to tie things up at 89 and 91, respectively, before Harris’ game-clinching free throws. Sidenote: Afflalo’s 13 rebounds matched a career-high for him.

Tobias Harris
5-10 FG | 8-12 FT | 7 REB | 1 AST | 18 PTS | -7

Harris had his hands full trying to defend Kris Humphries all night long, but he got the best of him on the game’s defining play. Harris drew a foul on Humphries after he beat him to a loose ball following Nelson’s missed 3-pointer. With the Celtics in the penalty, Harris went to the free throw line and made what ended up being the game-winning free throws.

Glen Davis
8-16 FG | 1-1 FT | 1 STL | 7 REB | 17 PTS | +9

Orlando involved Davis in the pick-and-roll, which isn’t breaking news, given that the majority of his offensive possessions this season are involved in pick-and-rolls. But it’s how the Magic utilized him that was key. Rather than shoot midrange jump shots in pick-and-pops, which is normally his (below-average) forte, Davis rolled to the basket and attacked the rim to get his points.

Jameer Nelson
3-10 FG | 9-10 FT | 10 REB | 0 AST | 16 PTS | -1

The last time Nelson attempted 10 free throws in a regular season game? On November 1, 2009 against the Toronto Raptors at the start of the 2009-10 season. Needless to say, it’s rare that Nelson gets to the free throw line a lot but that’s what the Magic needed — an anomalous event — to get themselves their first win of 2014.

Boston Celtics

As was the case on Friday against the Los Angeles Lakers, Rajon Rondo played in five-minute spurts versus Orlando, with head coach Brad Stevens wisely rationing Rondo’s minutes so that he played in the last five minutes of crunch time. Rondo even made a big midrange jump shot that momentarily gave Boston an 89-87 lead before losing in the last seconds.

Jan 19

Preview: Boston Celtics at Orlando Magic

Essentials

  • Teams: Boston Celtics at Orlando Magic
  • Date: January 19, 2014
  • Time: 6:00 p.m.
  • Television: Fox Sports Florida
  • Arena: Amway Center

Records

  • Celtics: 14-27
  • Magic: 10-30

Probable starters

Celtics:

  • Rajon Rondo
  • Avery Bradley
  • Jeff Green
  • Jared Sullinger
  • Kris Humphries

Magic:

  • Jameer Nelson
  • Victor Oladipo
  • Arron Afflalo
  • Tobias Harris
  • Glen Davis

Advanced stats

Celtics:

  • Pace: 93.5 (18th of 30)
  • Offensive Rating: 101.9 (24th of 30)
  • Defensive Rating: 105.8 (15th of 30)

Magic:

  • Pace: 94.1 (16th of 30)
  • Offensive Rating: 100.3 (26th of 30)
  • Defensive Rating: 106.7 (18th of 30)

Read about the Bobcats

Celtics Hub

Jan 18

Grades: Charlotte Bobcats 111, Orlando Magic 101

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Photo by Fernando Medina/NBAE via Getty Images

 

Charlotte Bobcats 111 Final
Recap | Box Score
101 Orlando Magic

Arron Afflalo
7-14 FG | 6-8 FT | 2 REB | 4 AST | 24 PTS | -7

After missing the previous three games with a strained right foot, Afflalo made his return to the starting lineup against the Bobcats and was his usual efficient self offensively. Afflalo scored 12 of his 24 points in the fourth quarter, getting to the free throw line at will near the end of the game as the Magic tried make a late comeback bid to no avail.

Jameer Nelson
7-16 FG | 3-7 3P | 1 STL | 8 AST | 18 PTS | -19

On the stat sheet, Nelson played Kemba Walker to a relative stalemate, even though he guarded Michael Kidd-Gilchrist primarily (because of his inability to shoot the basketball and be any sort of offensive threat). It was a ho-hum performance for Nelson, who continues his recent hot streak on offense, albeit in losing efforts.

Victor Oladipo
4-14 FG | 1-4 3P | 5 REB | 10 AST | 11 PTS | -18

It was Oladipo’s posterization of Gerald Henderson that served as the lone highlight in another Magic loss. Midway through the second quarter, Oladipo intercepted a pass from Henderson, then jumped into hyperspace on a one-man fast break. Henderson caught up to Oladipo in transition, tried to block his dunk attempt, and got jammed on. Oladipo flexed in celebration and rightfully so.

Glen Davis
5-7 FG | 1-2 FT | 11 REB | 0 AST | 11 PTS | -9

Al Jefferson (30 points and 16 rebounds) systematically destroyed Davis in this game. Big Al put on a clinic in the low and high post on the left block, an area on the court where he’s made a name for himself in the NBA over the years. This is a game where Orlando missed Nikola Vucevic, as his length could have helped to slow down Jefferson.

Charlotte Bobcats

For a brief moment, it looked like the Bobcats were going to blow out the Magic in the first quarter. Charlotte jumped out to a 21-3 lead in the period, before Orlando slowly chipped away at the deficit and took the lead in the second quarter. The Bobcats restored order eventually, going on a free throw parade in the fourth quarter (shooting 16-for-20 on FTs) to seal the win.

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