- The Orlando Magic are on pace to break an NBA record for free-throw futility. Evan Dunlap of Orlando Pinstriped Post has more: “The Magic’s 78.7-percent mark on foul shots ranked fifth in the 2012/13 season through Wednesday’s games, but accuracy isn’t the problem for Orlando. Not anymore, anyway. No, the real problem is that the Magic don’t draw fouls. Through Wednesday, the Magic’s average of 16 free-throw attempts per game ranked last in the league. Not just for the season, but ever. Prior to 2012/13, no team in the history of the NBA had ever averaged fewer than 18 free-throw attempts. Orlando is one of two teams–the Philadelphia 76ers are the other–now under that threshold.”
- The Magic are 1-10 without Glen Davis this season.
- Al Harrington, who has yet to play a game this season as he recovers from knee surgery, says he’s close to returning.
- Josh Robbins of the Orlando Sentinel has additional details on Harrington’s road to recovery.
- More from Robbins: “Arron Afflalo didn’t participate in the Orlando Magic’s shootaround this morning at TD Garden because of his strained left calf, and he’s unlikely to play when the team faces the Boston Celtics tonight.”
Photo by Fernando Medina/NBAE via Getty Images
Against the New York Knicks on Wednesday, Glen Davis suffered a left foot injury after stepping on Iman Shumpert’s foot early in the first quarter. It was revealed later that night that Davis fractured his left foot.
But it wasn’t until the next day when the Orlando Magic revealed the severity of the injury — Davis had fractured the fifth metatarsal in his left foot and was expected to be out 8-12 weeks. In other words, he could miss the rest of the season.
Magic Basketball reacts to news of Davis’ injury.
What were your first few thoughts when Davis went down?
Nate Drexler: Honestly, I didn’t think this would be a potentially season-ending injury. My first thought was that the Magic would struggle to cover Amar’e Stoudemire and Tyson Chandler for the rest of the game, but it really didn’t occur to me that this was a serious injury.
Sean Highkin: A potentially season-ending injury sucks, no matter how frustrating the player in question has been this season. I feel bad for him and wish him the best in his recovery.
Noam Schiller: Mostly, it just sucks for Glen. He hasn’t been the funnest guy to watch this year, but he’s consistently tried hard to acquit himself to a bigger role. Then again. Andrew Nicholson!
What does this mean for the Magic this season?
Drexler: A few less wins, a few more losses, and a lot more minutes for Andrew Nicholson (hopefully). Like it or not, Glen Davis is a huge part of both the offense and defense, and comes equipped with a “win at all costs” mentality. This is honestly a blow to an already troubled squad.
Highkin: I don’t think it will really have that big an impact one way or the other on their win-loss record. The Magic are pretty good at losing games with or without Big Baby in the lineup. The silver lining here is that it opens up a lot of extra minutes for Andrew Nicholson, whose recent DNP-CD’s make no sense whatsoever. I wouldn’t be surprised if he starts the majority of games the rest of the way and I’ll be interested to see what he can do given that added responsibility.
Schiller: That the defensive team from November and December is done for. Davis has been the team’s best frontcourt defender by a mile, but his struggles with his shot have consistently taken the offense down. Without him, this is guaranteed to be an offense-first squad.
Is Orlando a better team without Davis?
Drexler: Maybe. It’s not a pot shot at Davis, but numbers don’t lie, right? The Magic are 5.0 points per 100 possessions worse with Davis on the floor, per NBA.com. Does that speak more to the team in general or to Davis’ inflated usage and shot volume? I’m not really sure. Right now, I’m more caught up thinking about how Orlando is going to do anything inside when Vucevic and Nicholson are not in the game.
Highkin: Yes. They’re not a good team regardless, but games will certainly be more watchable without him jacking up contested long two after contested long two.
Schiller: No. The Magic went on a 10-game losing streak when Davis went down in December and have been obliterated defensively when he wasn’t on the floor. Long term, it might be advisable to give his minutes towards younger guys, but it’s hard to argue that would be the case if the team were playing for anything at the moment.
- Josh Robbins of the Orlando Sentinel: “Glen Davis will undergo surgery on Friday to repair a fractured fifth metatarsal in his left foot, and Orlando Magic officials expect him to miss eight to 12 weeks, leaving his return by the end of the season in serious doubt.”
- Jameer Nelson is a master of the trick shot.
- Kelly Dwyer of Ball Don’t Lie reacts to news that Glen Davis may miss the rest of the season with a fractured left foot.
- Ben Golliver of The Point Forward breaks down the repercussions of Davis’ injury: “The Magic sit in 12th place in the Eastern Conference with a 14-31 record. The loss to the Knicks marked their seventh consecutive defeat during what has been Year One of a rebuilding season following the blockbuster trade of All-Star center Dwight Howard last summer. There are still 11 full weeks until Orlando’s final regular-season game of the season. Of course, given their positioning relative to the playoff picture, there’s no reason to rush Davis back into the lineup for meaningless games down the stretch.”
- With Davis out for the foreseeable future, more playing time could be on the horizon for Andrew Nicholson.
- Despite standout performances from Nelson and J.J. Redick, the Magic lost to the New York Knicks in last night’s game.
- Video of Davis’ fracturing his left foot after stepping on Iman Shumpert’s foot while running up the court.
- With Davis potentially out with a season-ending injury and the Magic having lost 18 of their last 20 games, Brian Schmitz of the Orlando Sentinel says it’s time for Orlando to focus on developing players for the future.
- Amin Elhassan of ESPN Insider: “One of the less heralded pieces of the Dwight Howard trade, Vucevic has quietly emerged as one of the most productive young centers in the league after not playing much in his rookie year in Philadelphia. He’s an elite rebounder on both ends, checking at No. 6 in DRB (27.1) and No. 20 in ORB (12.2). He’s one of only 10 players in the league averaging a double-double.”
Photo by Ray Amati/NBAE via Getty Images
The Magic are great at having small successes, but still losing games. The interesting thing is that the small successes, just like the ways they end up losing games, change from night to night. On Wednesday, Orlando had no trouble scoring from the perimeter and did a great job containing Carmelo Anthony, but lost the game in the paint.
As far as defensive schemes go, the Magic did a wonderful job on Carmelo Anthony in the first half and really the entire game. With Maurice Harkless guarding him straight up, Orlando switched in and out of double and even triple teams, and held Carmelo to a meager nine points in the first half.
Melo would finish the night with 20 points (setting a Knicks franchise record with his 30th straight 20-point game), but he shot just 2-for-7 from deep, and, aside from a little scoring burst in the fourth quarter was, at least by his standards, not a huge factor in the game.
And yes, Harkless resembled more than just a decent defender. Even Clyde Frazier pointed out in the broadcast that the reason Harkless is going to be a good player in this league is because he’s a terrific defender. Harkless stayed with Anthony just enough to make sure he didn’t get hot and hang 40 on the Magic. More importantly, he turned Carmelo into a jumpshooter and protected the paint by guiding Melo into help defense.
But Carmelo was not the main attacking option for the Knicks in this one.
For most of the night, Redick and Nelson were getting buckets at will. Nelson absolutely abused Raymond Felton with his first step, and, much like the last meeting with the Knicks, found his way to the rim easily. Similarly, Redick attacked, but more importantly was shooting well from deep. All the while, Carmelo was relatively contained.
The biggest issue for Orlando, though, was their inability to stop Tyson Chandler and Amar’e Stoudemire in the paint. Chandler and Stoudemire combined to score 35 points and shoot 17-for-18 from the floor. There was truly nothing Orlando could do to stop them and you have to think they felt the loss of Glen Davis (who left the game early in the first quarter with a broken left foot), especially in the moments when Andrew Nicholson was guarding Tyson Chandler.
To sum it up, you can’t go up with Nikola Vucevic and basically no one else, and expect to shut down Stoudemire and Chandler (much less win the game). And that’s an interesting problem to end up with, considering the primary issues at the outset were scoring and containing Carmelo.
Again, it’s a strange year for so many reasons, not the least of which is the constant shifting of successes and struggles for this young Magic team.
MVP (Most Valuable Player)
J.J. Redick. 29 points on 9-for-14 shooting (4-for-7 from three-point range) basically says it all. Redick was lights out and made us all forget for a few moments that Afflalo was not in the lineup.
After playing the first four minutes of the game, Glen Davis left the court with a broken left foot. His absence left a huge hole in the Magic frontcourt, and opened the flood gates for Chandler and Stoudemire.
That Was … a Waste
It would have been nice to have seen this output from Orlando’s starting backcourt with a fully staffed squad. Instead, the Magic fall for the seventh straight time, and outside of the fantasy world, those 50 combined points from Redick and Nelson were all for naught.
- Teams: Orlando Magic at New York Knicks
- Date: January 30, 2013
- Time: 7:30 p.m.
- Television: Fox Sports Florida
- Arena: Madison Square Garden
- Magic: 14-30
- Knicks: 27-15
- Jameer Nelson
- J.J. Redick
- Maurice Harkless
- Glen Davis
- Nikola Vucevic
- Raymond Felton
- Jason Kidd
- Iman Shumpert
- Carmelo Anthony
- Tyson Chandler
- Pace: 91.4 (16th of 30)
- Offensive Rating: 103.2 (23rd of 30)
- Defensive Rating: 107.5 (24th of 30)
- Pace: 90.6 (23rd of 30)
- Offensive Rating: 110.5 (3rd of 30)
- Defensive Rating: 106.0 (16th of 30)