Magic Basketball: An Orlando Magic blog - Part 28

Jan 03

Victor Oladipo named East Rookie of the Month

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Photo by David Liam Kyle/NBAE via Getty Images

Via Orlando Magic press release:

Orlando Magic guard Victor Oladipo was named the Kia NBA Eastern Conference Rookie of the Month for games played in December, the NBA has announced today.

Oladipo is just the fifth Magic player to be awarded the honor and the first since March of 2001, when Mike Miller was the co-winner of the award. Dennis Scott won the award once, Shaquille O’Neal was awarded the honor four times, while Anfernee Hardaway and Miller each won twice.

Oladipo, the second overall selection in the 2013 NBA Draft, ranked second among Eastern Conference rookies during December in scoring (12.7 ppg.), second in assists (3.8 apg.), second in steals (1.33 spg.), fourth in rebounds (4.5 rpg.) and second in minutes (32.1 mpg.). As of January 1, he also ranked among all NBA players in steals (T-18th) and assists (T-39th).

During December, Oladipo scored in double figures 10 times and had 20+ points twice, including a career-high 26 points on both Dec. 3 at Philadelphia and Dec. 13 vs. Cleveland. On Dec. 3 at Philadelphia, he also registered the first triple-double of his career with 10 assists and 10 rebounds to go along with his 26 points. In addition, Oladipo also notched a double-double against Detroit on Dec. 27, with 16 points and a career-high 11 assists.

Utah’s Trey Burke was the winner of the award for the Western Conference.

Jan 03

Orlando waives Hedo Turkoglu

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Photo by Cameron Browne/NBAE via Getty Images

Via Orlando Magic press release:

The Orlando Magic have waived forward Hedo Turkoglu, general manager Rob Hennigan announced today.

Turkoglu has appeared in 897 regular season games during his NBA career with Sacramento, San Antonio, Orlando, Toronto and Phoenix, averaging 11.9 ppg., 4.2 rpg. and 3.1 apg. in 28.5 mpg., while shooting .381 (1,164-3,057) from three-point range. He has also appeared in 93 career playoff outings, averaging 11.1 ppg., 4.3 rpg. and 3.0 apg. in 31.1 mpg.

Turkoglu played in 497 regular season games with Orlando from 2004-09 and 2010-13, averaging 14.5 ppg., 4.5 rpg. and 3.9 apg. in 32.7 mpg. He also appeared in 49 playoff games with the Magic, averaging 14.4 ppg., 4.5 rpg. and 4.5 apg. in 38.0 minpg. Turkoglu earned the NBA’s Most Improved Player Award in 2007-08 and helped Orlando reach the 2009 NBA Finals.

Jan 03

Friday’s Magic Word

  • David Thorpe of ESPN Insider highlights what Victor Oladipo needs to improve on: There’s little doubt that, in the NBA, the more athletic a player is the better chance he has to be elite. Oladipo, who is already doing some amazingly athletic things nightly, is absolutely in line to be a top athlete in this league. But this game is also about skill and craft — two areas that he’s not yet consistent in. And that’s the key for Oladipo.”
  • Amin Elhassan of ESPN Insider says that Oladipo is the most intriguing player in the rookie class: His combination of explosive athleticism and strength, coupled with his defensive vigor, make him a possible “Kryptonite” for the super-athlete PGs who have taken over the league.”
  • “Orlando Magic are bringing back the best NBA jerseys ever.”
  • The Orlando Magic get an “F” for blowing the game against the Cleveland Cavaliers.
  • Anderson Varejao (18 points, career-high 25 rebounds) took advantage of Nikola Vucevic’s absence (ankle).
  • The Magic could use a win versus the Miami Heat on Saturday to get over Thursday’s disappointing loss to the Cavaliers.
  • Matt Moore of CBSSports.com with a descriptive breakdown of Orlando’s choke job: “Orlando hung in there and played a more balanced, more fundamental game. They built a seven point lead with 50 seconds remaining. It was over. And then an absolutely phenomenal tanking job ensued. It was heroic tanking. It was also sad.
  • So how exactly did the Magic lose a 10-point lead in 94 seconds to Cleveland? A team without Kyrie Irving? Dan Devine of Ball Don’t Lie details how.

Jan 03

Welcoming back the original black pinstripes

Nick Anderson Action Portrait

NBA Photos/Getty Images

Via OrlandoMagic.com:

In celebration of the Magic’s 25th anniversary season and to honor the rich history of Orlando Magic basketball, the team will don the original jersey, the signature black, pinstriped jersey with throwback team logos worn through the 1989-94 seasons starting with the January 4 matchup with the Miami Heat. The team also featured the jerseys through the 1998 season as an alternate. The original Magic jersey design was worn by Magic greats including Shaquille O’Neal, Penny Hardaway, Dennis Scott, Nick Anderson, Horace Grant, Darrell Armstrong and Scott Skiles.

There’s a time for objective analysis, and there’s a time for things that are too awesome for stoicism. The Orlando Magic wearing their “black, pinstriped jersey[s]” is of the latter category. They’re among the greatest jerseys ever, and, given the general reaction on Twitter being an emphatic embrace of the news, they’re fondly remembered.

The reason, I’m willing to wager, stretches back to the talent and level of play of those Shaq and Penny years. For a fair share of basketball fans around the country, Orlando became a national team. Those teams were the very definition of entertaining. Don’t forget about Dennis Scott, Nick Anderson and Horace Grant in these same styled jerseys — with Grant accentuating them with matching Rec Specs. Scott Skiles donned them, too.

Many fans have first loves, but Orlando provided an outlet in lean years and an entertaining alternative on off nights. That effect seems even more pronounced in regions far removed from an NBA city, where geographical affiliation becomes nebulous and rooting for a team either hundreds or thousands of miles away seems an equal choice.*

*Alternate explanation: people like the jerseys because they look really good. And in an age of endless glasses without lenses, surely someone on the Magic can rock some non-prescription Rec Specs, right? I’m looking at you, Tobias Harris.

And, fair weather or bandwagon as it might be, I think the Magic will gain quite a few fans as they once again don these gorgeous jerseys. Even if it’s just for the few nights that they are so adorned, it’s a chance to show the entertaining side of the 2013-14 Orlando squad. Nikola Vucevic is a mountain of a man who devours souls and rebounds alike. Victor Oladipo seems more adept at initiating offense and creating his own looks with every game. Arron Afflalo continues his bid to make the All-Star Game. Glen Davis does Glen Davis things, and all that entails.

In an age of expanding League Pass access (and other not-so-legitimate means), the era of the national team is alive and well. The Magic will draw curious viewers with their selection of attire. Keeping them curious is the new task at hand.

Jan 03

Grades: Cleveland Cavaliers 87, Orlando Magic 81 (OT)

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Photo by David Liam Kyle/NBAE via Getty Images

 

Cleveland Cavaliers 87 Final
Recap | Box Score
81 Orlando Magic

Arron Afflalo
5-15 FG | 2-5 3P | 6 REB | 5 AST | 12 PTS | -12

The Cavaliers double-teamed Afflalo throughout the game and forced him to give up the ball a lot. The Magic tried their best to run sets Afflalo to free him up for open looks to counteract that. But even then, Cleveland made it tough on Afflalo to get quality shots. This is the type of added attention Afflalo has been seeing lately, given how well he’s been playing this season.

Glen Davis
6-19 FG | 4-8 FT | 2 BLK | 13 REB | 16 PTS | -11

Big Baby got a double-double, but as is the norm for him, he did it in the most inefficient way possible. He took 19 shots to score 16 points, with many of his misses coming at the rim. It’s often said that Davis struggles to finish in the paint because of his lack of lift (due to his girth). That’s what happened against the Cavaliers.

Jameer Nelson
5-9 FG | 4-8 3P | 6 REB | 9 AST | 14 PTS | -8

Did you know that more than half of Nelson’s field goal attempts (55.6 percent, to be exact) are from behind the 3-point line? Well, now you know. Nelson kept that trend going versus Cleveland, as four of his five made field goals were 3-point shots. It’s interesting to see Nelson’s shot selection drift further away from the basket — at least he’s not shooting long 2s.

Andrew Nicholson
5-11 FG | 0-3 3P | 1 BLK | 6 REB | 12 PTS | +7

Nicholson wasn’t able to connect on any of his corner 3s, but that’s about all he couldn’t do offensively. He was damn near-automatic everywhere else on the floor. On a night where nearly every player for the Magic struggled to score on offense, Nicholson was effective. If given the minutes, he could have easily put up a more efficient double-double than Davis.

Cleveland Cavaliers

In the span of 13.9 seconds, Nelson fouled Jack on a 3-pointer, Harris committed a five-second violation, and Moore missed two free throws. That allowed the Cavaliers to erase a 79-72 deficit — thanks to Jack’s three free throws and back-to-back layups from Waiters — and send the game to overtime, where they came back to win. Varejao (18 points, career-high 25 rebounds) was a monster.

Jan 03

Video: Dion Waiters sends the game to overtime

Jan 02

Preview: Orlando Magic at Cleveland Cavaliers

Essentials

  • Teams: Orlando Magic at Cleveland Cavaliers
  • Date: January 2, 2014
  • Time: 7:00 p.m.
  • Television: Fox Sports Florida
  • Arena: Quicken Loans Arena

Records

  • Magic: 10-21
  • Cavaliers: 10-21

Probable starters

Magic:

  • Jameer Nelson
  • Arron Afflalo
  • Tobias Harris
  • Glen Davis
  • Jason Maxiell

Cavaliers:

  • Jarrett Jack
  • C.J. Miles
  • Earl Clark
  • Tristan Thompson
  • Anderson Varejao

Advanced stats

Magic:

  • Pace: 94.7 (13th of 30)
  • Offensive Rating: 101.8 (24th of 30)
  • Defensive Rating: 105.1 (14th of 30)

Cavaliers:

  • Pace: 93.8 (17th of 30)
  • Offensive Rating: 100.2 (27th of 30)
  • Defensive Rating: 106.6 (19th of 30)

Read about the Cavaliers

Cavs: The Blog

Jan 02

Magic to wear Hardwood Classics jerseys

Orlando Magic v New Jersey Nets

Photo by Nathaniel S. Butler/Getty Images

Via Orlando Magic press release:

In celebration of the Magic’s 25th anniversary season and to honor the rich history of Orlando Magic basketball, the team will don the original jersey, the signature black, pinstriped jersey with throwback team logos worn through the 1989-94 seasons starting with the January 4 matchup with the Miami Heat. The team also featured the jerseys through the 1998 season as an alternate. The original Magic jersey design was worn by Magic greats including Shaquille O’Neal, Penny Hardaway, Dennis Scott, Nick Anderson, Horace Grant, Darrell Armstrong and Scott Skiles.

The white and black pinstriped jerseys were worn for some of the greatest Magic moments in team history, including Scott Skiles’ 30 assist performance on Dec. 30, 1990 – breaking the NBA record for most assists in a single game; Shaquille O’Neal breaking the backboard and Nick Anderson scoring a career-high 50 points in the same game on April 23, 1993; when Nick Anderson stole the ball from Michael Jordan in Game 1 of the 1995 Eastern Conference Semifinals; the Magic’s first run to the NBA Finals in 1995; Dennis Scott setting a then-NBA single game record with 11 3-pointers on April 18, 1996; and Penny Hardaway’s 42 and 41 points, respectively, in Games 3 and 4 of the first round of the 1997 NBA Playoffs against Miami, still ranking as one of the best playoff performances in Magic history.

The Hardwood Classic Jerseys will be featured at the following 10 games this season: Jan. 4 vs. Miami, Jan. 17 vs. Charlotte, Jan. 21 at Brooklyn, Jan. 24 vs. LA Lakers, Feb. 5 vs. Detroit, Feb. 7 vs. Oklahoma City, Feb. 21 vs. New York, Mar. 8 at San Antonio, Mar. 10 at Milwaukee and Mar. 14 vs. Washington.

Dec 31

Grades: Golden State Warriors 94, Orlando Magic 81

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Photo by Fernando Medina/NBAE via Getty Images

 

Golden State Warriors 94 Final
Recap | Box Score
81 Orlando Magic

Arron Afflalo
7-18 FG | 0-4 3P | 1 REB | 4 AST | 15 PTS | -20

Bound to come back to earth simply due to regression after such awesome recent play, Afflalo also struggled due to some sterling defense by the Warriors — his streak of six consecutive games scoring 20 or more points was snapped. He deserves credit for helping to hold Curry and Thompson in check from beyond the arc, though: Golden State shot just 6-for-27 from behind the 3-point line.

Nikola Vucevic
2-5 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 BLK | 1 REB | 4 PTS | -13

Vucevic left in the first quarter after spraining his left ankle (the same ankle he injured earlier in the season) and never returned. His absence, though, was certainly felt, nowhere more than on the glass. With Vucevic out of commission, the Warriors proceeded to out-rebound the Magic by a wide margin (56-37). Orlando can only hope that Vucevic isn’t out for too long.

Glen Davis
4-10 FG | 2-3 FT | 3 REB | 2 AST | 10 PTS | -15

In a battle of shoot-first, defense-averse power forwards, Big Baby was soundly outplayed by David Lee from the opening tip. The numbers, incredibly, don’t do his performance justice. Davis was dreadful on both ends against the Warriors. Three rebounds? That’s not close to good enough. Meanwhile, Lee finished the game with 22 points (11-for-15 shooting from the floor) and nine rebounds.

Tobias Harris
2-11 FG | 0-3 FT | 1 BLK | 9 REB | 5 PTS | -16

Harris couldn’t find his jumper against the Warriors and was far too stubborn in his search. On several occasions he forced a shot when a pass was the smarter play. He was the only Orlando player that was even close to game on the boards, though, and had a couple memorable defensive moments. But offense is his game, and Harris needs to be far better.

Golden State Warriors

The Warriors jumped out to a 26-13 lead in the first quarter, getting whatever they wanted offensively while playing sound defense on the other end. Golden State’s double-digit lead ballooned to 24 in the second quarter and they — understandably so — went on cruise control from there. The Magic made things interesting in the third quarter, but this was a beatdown. Plain and simple.

Dec 31

Preview: Golden State Warriors at Orlando Magic

Essentials

  • Teams: Golden State Warriors at Orlando Magic
  • Date: December 31, 2013
  • Time: 5:00 p.m.
  • Television: Fox Sports Florida
  • Arena: Amway Center

Records

  • Warriors: 19-13
  • Magic: 10-20

Probable starters

Warriors:

  • Stephen Curry
  • Klay Thompson
  • Andre Iguodala
  • David Lee
  • Andrew Bogut

Magic:

  • Jameer Nelson
  • Arron Afflalo
  • Tobias Harris
  • Glen Davis
  • Nikola Vucevic

Advanced stats

Warriors:

  • Pace: 96.9 (4th of 30)
  • Offensive Rating: 105.4 (14th of 30)
  • Defensive Rating: 101.1 (6th of 30)

Magic:

  • Pace: 94.7 (13th of 30)
  • Offensive Rating: 101.8 (24th of 30)
  • Defensive Rating: 105.1 (14th of 30)

Read about the Warriors

Warriors World

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