Photo by Fernando Medina/NBAE via Getty Images
After a competitive first quarter, the Orlando Magic were able to cruise to their season-high fourth consecutive win with a 90-83 victory against the Washington Wizards. And the Magic have J.J. Redick and E’Twaun Moore to thank for that.
For Redick, it’s not puzzling that he played well. Redick is one of the best sixth men in the NBA, given that he’s an excellent shooter, underrated playmaker, and heady defender. What’s puzzling is that the Wizards, a good defensive team (ranked 13th in Defensive Rating heading into Wednesday’s game), didn’t make life difficult for Redick.
Redick shot 5-for-9 from the floor (4-for-5 from three-point range) for 17 points.
Redick buried a barrage of three-point shots — several of them came off of screen-and-curls. On one of Redick’s three-pointers, Gustavo Ayon set a pin-down screen and Redick curled around the screen for a catch-and-shoot opportunity off a pass from Moore. On another of Redick’s three-pointers, he received a handoff pass from Ayon, curled around the screen, took one dribble, and shot the ball in rhythm.
Quite frankly, Washington’s guards did a horrendous job of defending Redick in screen-and-curls and he made them pay dearly for their incompetence.
As for Moore, he did a nice job of mixing it up offensively — scoring mainly by spotting up on the perimeter and dribble penetrating into the lane. As a point guard, Moore is still a work in progress but as a scoring guard, he already has the tools to be effective.
Even though Redick and Moore were bright spots coming off the bench to lead Orlando to a win that brings them closer to .500 at 12-13, it wasn’t all roses against the Wizards. Late in the game, Glen Davis injured his left shoulder as he went up for a shot and was fouled by Emeka Okafor with 47.8 seconds remaining. Davis fell to the ground in severe pain and had to be taken back to the locker room.
The Magic fear Davis dislocated his left shoulder, but the extent of the injury won’t be known until an MRI is done on Thursday.
It’s a shame that the game had to end on a sour note for Orlando against lowly Washington, but them’s the breaks.
MVP (Most Valuable Player)
Redick has been the Magic’s best player all season long and tonight was no different. Redick gave Orlando a nice lift off the bench, finishing with 17 points on 5-for-9 shooting from the floor (4-for-6 from three-point range).
The Magic’s starting backcourt of Jameer Nelson and Arron Afflalo could not get anything going offensively against the Wizards. Luckily for Orlando, their back-ups — Moore and Redick — were able to pick up the slack.
That Was … Ugly
Afflalo (15 points on 6-for-18 shooting) and Davis (12 points on 6-for-18 shooting) were not models of efficiency on offense. They both put up a lot of shots with little to show for it in the box score.