Orlando Magic Blog

Group Blog talking about the NBA 2009 Eastern Conference Champions. Due to the amazing success of the 2009 playoff run comments are now frequently deleted to kill offensive comments, incoherence, or asininity. Comments can no longer be anonymous and require either a Blogger or OpenID account.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Howard BELIEVES in Magic

Forget what I said in regards to keeping the expectations low. Dwight's a young guy, but you got to love his attitude, along with the rest of his teammates. If any of his "talk" translates on the court, we might have a 1995 flashback with people saying: "why not us, why not now"?

FL Today: Howard Believes in Magic

Sentinel: Howard Predicts NBA Title

Catching Up With...Dwight Howard

NOTES: Coach Brian Hill says four of the starting jobs heading into camp will go to incumbents: Howard at center, Jameer Nelson at point guard, Tony Battie at power forward and Hedo Turkoglu at small forward. Returnee Keyon Dooling likely will be the shooting guard.


  • At 11:48 PM, Blogger Matt said…

    This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  • At 11:55 PM, Blogger Matt said…

    That is the first blunder of the season by Hill. Darko should start and at center since he is taller and heavier than Dwight. Dwight's more fitting position is Power Forward until he bulks up a lot more, at which time he could be rotated between the two spots.

  • At 5:32 AM, Blogger Mike from Illinois said…

    Agreed, Matt. I like your starting lineup better. Keep in mind, though, that this is only tentative for the start of training camp. By the time the regular season starts, the starting lineup could be different, depending on how everyone does during training camp and exhibitions.

    I was under the impression that Grant Hill would be the starting shooting guard, but I guess Dooling has the inside track at this time. However, if Grant has an injury-free and productive training camp, he could easily wind up being the starter at the two.

    No matter who is in the starting lineup, I really like the depth coming off the bench (Arroyo, Ariza, Dooling or Hill, Redick, Diener, and Battie or Darko).

  • At 3:52 PM, Blogger Mike from Illinois said…

    This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  • At 3:53 PM, Blogger Mike from Illinois said…

    In my previous post, I forgot to add Keith Bogans in the mix adding to the depth coming off the bench.

    I checked out pinnaclesports.com recently, to see what the current odds are on who's going to win the NBA championship this coming season.

    Dallas is the favorite at 3.8 to 1, followed by Phoenix (4.8 to 1), San Antonio (5.2 to 1), and Miami (5.8 to 1).

    The Magic are listed as 150 to 1 odds of winning the championship. Only 5 other teams have worse odds: NY (200 to 1), TOR (200 to 1), CHA (400 to 1), ATL (500 to 1), and POR (500 to 1).

    In over/under in terms of wins, the Magic were listed at a stunningly low 36.5 at -123 odds (betting $123 to win $100). I don't know why the Magic aren't being taken more seriously by these so-called "experts". Even the least optimistic among us here on the blog figure the Magic for 41-43 wins, while some of us think the Magic have a shot at 46-48 wins.

    I am going on vacation to Las Vegas next week, and it will be interesting to see what the numbers are on the Magic in the various sports books. I just may invest a couple hundred in a futures ticket on the Magic going over the forecast wins, if the totals at the books are similarly low as at pinnaclesports.com.

  • At 5:06 PM, Blogger Matt said…

    Nothing is tentative for a kid that has been put down for so long. He needs encouragement, anyways he can get, to build confidence. What harm would have come to the Magic if Darko could start a game or two at the end of the season? That is the difference between a coach who has the insight and vision for long-term and the one who is going by the business day-by-day and is just happy to keep the job for as long as he could, and does not have the guts to make bold decisions. Believe it or not, the coaching caliber is something that experts are looking at when forecasting a team's prospect.

  • At 5:41 PM, Blogger OVERWADED said…

    I was watching Orlando Magic: Slamming Summer a couple days ago on Sun Sports. The blunder as you call it, isn't just Brian Hill. Otis Smith said: "the biggest thing we have to do with Dwight, is tell him he is a center, and that's tough for Dwight, because he thinks he's a power forward. So that's why we'll still put up F/C on his bio now-a-days."

    If anyone wants to catch that show on Sun Sports, they are showing it a lot. Here is the schedule for that, and another Magic show coming soon.

    Date - Time (ET)
    Saturday, September 23 - 9 p.m.
    Monday, September 25 - 6 p.m.
    Wednesday, September 27 - 9:30 p.m.
    Thursday, September 28 - 5 p.m.
    Friday, September 29 - 7:30 p.m.
    Saturday, September 30 - 8 p.m.
    Sunday, October 1 - 3 p.m.
    Monday, October 2 - 10:30 p.m.
    Thursday, October 5 - 5 p.m.
    Sunday, October 8 - 1:30 p.m.
    Wednesday, October 11 - 11:30 p.m.
    Thursday, October 12 - 12:30 p.m.
    Sunday, October 15 - 3 p.m.

    Date - Time (ET)
    Monday, October 16 - 8 p.m.
    Wednesday, October 18 - 7:30 p.m.
    Thursday, October 19 - 9:30 p.m.
    Saturday, October 21 - 3 p.m.
    Monday, October 23 - 6:30 p.m.
    Tuesday, October 24 - 5:30 p.m.
    Thursday, October 26 - 6 p.m.
    Friday, October 27 - 1 p.m.
    Sunday, October 29 - 1 p.m.
    Tuesday, October 31 - 3:30 p.m.
    Thursday, November 2 - 12:30 p.m.
    Friday, November 3 - 4 p.m.

    Brian Hill does seem to take the "safe route", because he doesn't want to piss anyone off and he has no balls. I'd like to say, Hill is doing it to get everyone motivated to fight for spots, but this team is already motivated, and for a guy like Darko, that might be counterproductive. It's a new season. Darko has shown at the end of last season, and the FIBA games that he can play. There is no reason, he shouldn't be given a shot of confidence being considered a starter. I expect by preseason he should be, and if not, I'll be really disappointed.

  • At 8:39 PM, Blogger Matt said…

    Then they are partners in ignorance. Why would anybody with a sound mind push an undersized player into a center position that may impede his development, and all that when a properly sized and legitimate center is available in Darko?

  • At 8:49 PM, Blogger Matt said…

    I guess the parallel question could be; Would PHO have played Amare at center if they had a better option for a center?

  • At 5:18 AM, Blogger OVERWADED said…

    It's time for me to be the "bad guy" again. Anyways...

    I don’t think Smith and Hill are the ignorant ones in this case. Let’s see, you say Darko is the properly sized one, why, because he's 1 inch taller and 20-25 lbs LESS than Dwight????? Dwight is a little younger, 1 inch smaller at 6-11, compared to Darko at 7-0, weighs 270, compared to Darko at 245. I’m not following you on the "properly sized" issue.

    Speaking of big men, when ANYONE in the NBA talks of the future of "big men", dominate centers, only 2 names come up; Dwight and Amare. There is a little difference though. Dwight is still 20 years old, 6-11, and 270 lbs. Amare is 24, 6-10, and 245. That is a big difference considering the age differences. Wait till you see the two side by side, Dwight is a lot bigger than Amare. Amare is more of a PF than Dwight will ever be, but Phoenix plays "small ball" so they live with it.

    I tried to leave my "opinion" out earlier today, but since it was mentioned again, I have a problem keeping my mouth shut. I’ve beem saying this for a little while now, especially since Darko arrived, so I’m agreeing with Otis and Hill in their direction.

    In what way does Dwight resemble a power forward??? Dwight looks like a center. Dwight plays like a center. Even if he eventually develops that David Robinson type mid range jump shot, he’s still going to be playing like a center. The role of "the intimidator" down low on both ends, which recently is what he called himself... Again, he’s only 20, and he’s 6-11, 270. If you look around the league, there are only 2 guys that are "bigger", Yao and Shaq. I don't see anyone else out that pushing Dwight around. Another reason it makes sense, is because Darko, although taller, is 20-25 lbs less than Dwight. I’m sure they’ll switch now and then on the defensive end, but Darko’s game is more like a power forwards game. He shoots outside, when defenses collapse on Dwight down low. He’s pretty much going to play the role Horace Grant did 10 years ago with Shaq, except I think he’ll be better that Grant ever was. It just makes sense to me. Even the modern day example with Sheed, Sheed was taller than Ben, but he wasn't stronger, and I think some people like to say he was the center, but he wasn’t, Wallace at 6-9, 240 was the center. Of course that's another debate... But look at Wallace now, does anyone say he is the Bulls PF, no, he is Chicago’s center. I know it’s just a label and it doesn’t matter, because in the end, you’re going to have the two best guys out there on the court. Hopefully in our case it’ll be Dwight and Darko. But really, all you have to do is look at how they play, their role-position, is defined with how they play, and it just seems obvious with Darko and Dwight.

    After saying all of that, there is a chance Darko might not even start, and then I’ll be pissed at Brian Hill.

    I'm sorry, I'm not trying to argue. I honestly just view it that way. I believe and trust in what Otis is trying to do here.

    Brian Hill is the one I don't trust.

  • At 12:21 PM, Blogger Big Figure said…

    Intro,you couldnt be more right in your assessment,dwight is not a power forward because of two things,(1)dwight does not particularly dribble well enough to face defenders and drive to the basket with a different array of moves on a consistent basis,guys like duncan,amare,KG & sheed have great "handles" for guys that size,so they can play the power and it doesnt hurt their team! (2)Dwight doesnt shoot it well enough to be a power forward,again duncan,kg & sheed all have range from the three point line in,dwight's range may be 15 feet and in which isnt good enough to play power forward! Let me also say that dwight can be the best center in the league,he has great athletism,he has a good back to the basket game,he's already arguably the best rebounder in the league,and he blocks shots with the best of them,those are center attributes and the biggest reason we can make the playoffs this year! Darko and tony are our best options at the power forward because both can shoot it from the outside which draws defenders out of the lane,which one should start is a whole nother issue!

  • At 7:26 PM, Blogger Matt said…

    I remember this from last year that when Dwight played against bigger or taller players (although I admit that there are not many bigger players than Dwight), he was inefficient. The risk is that his development, as well as his confidence, may be impeded if he plays against taller or bigger players for a long NBA season. Well, playing Darko at center and Dwight at Power Forward worked last season (although they were interchangeable). Why fix something that is not broken?

  • At 9:49 PM, Blogger Mike from Illinois said…

    Intro, I agree with your solid reasoning for putting Dwight at center and Darko at PF.

    Matt does have a legitimate point by bringing up the fact the Magic were successful late last season with Dwight at PF and Darko at C. However, I'm not worried about Dwight's confidence at all, as he has worked really hard this off-season to make himself a better player, and he gained valuable experience playing in the World Tournament.

    The only thing that would be wrong here, as Intro said, would be if Darko would not start at PF by the time the regular season gets here.

  • At 10:15 PM, Blogger Matt said…

    I would close the debate on my end by just asking this question: Why in a losing season, even after the arrival of Darko, the smaller and shorter Battie was played at center, instead of experimenting Dwight at that position? Were Hill and Smith sleep and all of sudden woke up with this insightful idea?

  • At 10:55 PM, Blogger Big Figure said…

    In no way am i going to defend BSH,but at the end of last season i will give him credit for switching the roles of tony and dwight,we all remember latin night (against detroit) during our win streak,well that night BSH got it right,he let darko and tony guard sheed all night,and dwight was truely playing the center guarding ben,it worked that night with a big win in the end,so i want to see more of that because darko's long arms had an effect on shedd at the PF spot,and also i dont think darko should start until he shows in practice every day that he can outplay tony,not just sometimes or just in games,he has to learn to practice how you play,but dwight will be our starting center this year and be effective,battie will start at PF for now,but by the end of training camp we'll know if darko deserve's to unseat him,right now its to early to start knocking anyone for who's gonna start the training camp/preaseason schedule,i think those roles were just given because of seniority so to speak,jameer,hedo,tony & dwight were last years starters so you have to stay with them until someone earns a spot from one of them,right or wrong thats just how most coaches usually do it! There's only two spots open,PF and SG,eventually we all know darko will win the PF spot over battie,and keyon will lose his job to grant or keith bogans,keyon's to small and JJ's a rookie,i'd like to see keith and darko in the line-up,with grant playing 20 strong minutes a game off the bench at SG and SF,plus Keyon,trevor and JJ at the back-up SG and SF respectively!

  • At 12:04 AM, Blogger Big Figure said…

    We're in good shape no matter who starts,but not having a back-up center is a big problem,if dwight gets into foul trouble BSH is forced to move darko or tony to center,both of whom get pushed around at that spot,we need a back-up center bad so tony and darko can play the PF,or pat's gonna get minutes when one of those guys has to move over,uuuuuuugggggggg!

  • At 5:58 PM, Blogger Mike from Illinois said…

    Like Big Figure said, I'm sure seniority had a lot to do with Hill naming Battie a training camp starter instead of Darko. And yes, it is too early to start knocking anyone over that decision. Let's see how this whole thing plays out over the pre-season.

  • At 10:43 PM, Blogger Matt said…

    Are we gonna get into these kinds of nonsensical debates, once again? Motivational issues are important, early on. Darko needs motivation and encouragement and no seniority crap should get in the way. I said that before and say it again that Darko needs to be thrown in a starting position to be forced to grow into it. Come on folks; how much are you willing to defer to a joke of a coach who is gonna hang many minutes for Pat Garrity around your neck?

  • At 12:41 PM, Blogger Big Figure said…

    There's no logic in just giving somebody something in sport,you never see a coach demote returning starters for no apparent reason,because there's no guarantee that said player will ever grow into a specific position by just giving it to him,there's only one way to treat athlete's,make them earn everything they get,i have no problem with darko being on the floor,but he better earn it from a tough & hard nosed kinda guy like battie,if darko can outplay battie everyday in training camp,he'll be the opening day starter,but if he displays mediocre performances against an undersized battie everyday in practice,he doesnt deserve anything but back-up minutes like he got last year,i think last years performances from darko were good,but often times darko had to be taken out of games because of conditioning & fouls,bottom line is darko will control how much he is used and whether he starts,i want to see an even more motivated darko this year,along with being a four quarter player like dwight,truth is darko's only been with this team for half a season,plus this is his first training camp with this team,so there are still some things he needs to prove to the team (his teammates),coaches & us bloggers as fans,brian shmitz's article in the sentinel desrcibes the battles that are about to start,so hopefully darko will come out on top because that will mean he proved himself,and will work hard for what he is given!

  • At 4:38 PM, Blogger Matt said…

    I am not interested in a bag full of cliches when responding to modern management techniques. The fact is without Darko realizing his potentials, The Magic's future is in jeopardy. Therefore, the focus should be to make it work with the kid, and that is not gonna happen with a no-ball conservative approach. I can buy into the logic of Dwight at center (as uncomfortable as I am with the idea) but at no time would take the nonsense of Battie starting, especially since him being an ultimate professional not minding to come off the bench (in another word there would be no conflict to deal with).

    I also disagree with this idea of not "knocking anybody over" at this time. At the start of last season, I was advocating the allowance of extra time to the coach due to injuries, as well as giving him the benefit of the doubt of being recently installed at the position. That time has long come and passed, and Hill had committed too many mistakes to deserve any benefit of the doubt. I now believe any wrong move or statement by him should be scrutinized, early on. I am surprised that some of the bloggers here who were criticizing Hill, vehemently, are now supportive of him or silent pending the passage of the training camp. Folks, I am leaning towards Smith to put a clamp on Hill, when need be. However, I am sorry that I do not share the level of confidence that some of you have towards Smith, at least not yet.

  • At 5:38 PM, Blogger OVERWADED said…

    I tend to side more with Matt on the Darko issue. I feel he should be starting no matter what at this point. Under other circumstances, I might agree with the whole "earning your spot" thought process. But in this case there are many reasons why he needs to be starting...

    One, we didn't start winning until he arrived last year. I know Arroyo came over with him, but things really picked up when Darko and Dwight played minutes together on the floor. Battie and Dwight never looked as good the entire season as Darko and Dwight did in their short time together. Battie was here starting the entire season, so he's had his chance.

    Two, Darko has shown a lot of what he can do if given a chance. He was solid coming off the bench last season, and a lot better than that over the summer in the FIBA games. Battie could have NEVER put up the kind of numbers Darko did at the FIBA games.

    Three, as Matt pointed out; "the fact is without Darko realizing his potentials, the Magic's future is in jeopardy." The potential of this team drops drastically without Darko filling that void in the starting lineup. There is a reason why some many say Darko is the KEY, or x-factor. We have a nice squad, but think of it like Detroit before Sheed arrived. They had a nice team, and they were able to make the playoffs, but once Sheed arrived, played controlled, he was the difference. In a similar way, Darko is that difference for the Magic. Without Darko playing a significant role, the Magic will struggle.

    Four, and I guess I could relate this to Matt's question earlier in regards to Battie. Matt asks: "Why in a losing season, even after the arrival of Darko, the smaller and shorter Battie was played at center, instead of experimenting Dwight at that position? Were Hill and Smith sleep and all of sudden woke up with this insightful idea?

    So here is my answer, and how I'll relate it to Darko. I think Battie was playing center because we had no other big men besides Dwight worth a damn so there was no other choice. Battie, he's a good hustle guy. He's a decent player and a good example for younger guys. But Battie isn't really a center or power forward. His game says he's a center and his body says he's a power forward. His jumper is below average. He's pretty much a POOOOOOOOOR MAN'S Ben Wallace. Or maybe a better comparison would be a "Bo Outlaw" type of player. He doesn't have the foot work to guard a lot of power forwards out there. To me, he's more the hard nosed, strong, undersized, hustle guy, come in off the bench with some energy and play whatever position, PF or C you need him at. That's the best I can describe him. He's a decent big in a league that lacks big men. He's undersized to be a center, and he lacks the skills to be a power forward, otherwise he would be. I don't know, I like Battie, and I know he's been a starter before, but I think that was by default and I don't view him as a "starter". He's better as a fill in do what needs to be done off the bench kinda guy. Does that make any sense? On the flip-side, we've only had a small taste of what Darko can do, and he's only 21. I already look at Darko as a better player than Battie. If he continues playing basketball, he's only going to get better. There should be no issues or conflict, as Matt pointed out, Battie is "the ultimate professional, in turn not minding to come off the bench." And a solid role off the bench is where I believe he belongs. Did that make sense?

    Let me wrap this up... Last year, Brian Hill had reasonable excuses in regards to not starting Darko. He was coming on a new roster, with only about 30 games left, and he didn't have the conditioning to play big minutes. I can let that pass, even though I didn't really agree with it. This year, there is no excuse, it's a new season, Darko is coming in knowing he is going to be playing significant minutes. And the fact remains, Darko is A LOT more important to this organization and it's future than Battie will ever be. We'll see what happens in training camp, pre season, and so on. But I hope for everyone’s sake, Darko is in the starting rotation.

  • At 8:11 PM, Blogger Mike from Illinois said…

    With Darko not being a starter in the pre-season, I believe this will motivate him to do whatever it takes to ensure that he gets the starting power forward spot when the regular season gets here.

    In the pre-season games, I'm confident we'll see a highly motivated Darko leaving no doubt who the starter should be on November 1st against the Bulls.

  • At 9:37 PM, Blogger Matt said…

    Very well said, Introvert316. The modern management has walked away from techniques of generalization simply known as "one size fits all". The modern management supports close study and evaluation on case-by-case basis. This approach may become subjective at times, but still is much more accurate than the old generalization approach. The technique of motivation by denial is also a thing of the past since the empirical evidence supports that denying a position or a possession may motivate a person to try harder to get it only in a low percentage of cases. On the contrary, some researches show that there is a higher probability that the person may settle for less or give it up for good.

  • At 12:35 PM, Blogger Big Figure said…

    Matt,intro,you guys are setting yourselve's up for a season of bashing BSH from the begining(which i have no problem with,you guys can do it,and i'll stick to analyzing games/matchups),while i agree with everything you guys said (except for the "spoil the athlete thoery" giving him something he did not earn,causing returning starters to resent said player and causing team rift)),i've played pro ball over sea's and semi pro ball in the united states and no coach has ever demoted a guy for no apparrent reason that just doesnt happen,but whatever,me i'm going to enjoy this team no matter who is on the court,i beleive this team will win despite the coach (i dont support BSH),and more importantly i beleive this team will win because steve francis is gone and jameer nelson is our point guard for a whole season,but the fact that brian schmitz listed the first match-up at training camp darko vs. battie,that shows that he's not even confident that darko will win the job,whether you guys like it or not BSH is gonna make darko earn the job,it wont be given to him,so i take back my statement "its too early to start knocking someone",i guess its the perfect time,so let the BSH bashing continue,because darko may not be the opening day starter,i understand the difference between what we want and what we may get,i'm not gonna hang my head or say the season's over if darko's not in the line-up,and i'm not gonna turn my back on battie or not have "any part of him starting",i think we can win whether battie or darko is in the line-up,this years biggest difference between wins and loses will be our point guard play,and thats coming from someone who has played on all three levels,high school,college,and pro!

  • At 1:14 PM, Blogger Matt said…

    I was trying to avoid getting into theoretical management issues, but unfortunately got pulled in. The empirical research has proven that "motivation by denial" (which is basically "eran your sopt" idea) results in the person settling for less or totally give up, MORE OFTEN than taking the CHALLENGE to earn it. The very obvious example was Kelvin Cato of last season that had all the incentives in the world to improve but didn't. Stupidity? May be, but the result is a fact.

    Now, let me paint a negative scenario for you: What if Darko gets dispirited and discouraged, as a result of which he regresses to the point that his talents (on which we have no quarrel) is wasted, at least in Orlando, as happened in Detroit?

    In modern theory, they work it the other way around, meaning when they have the right candidate, they give him/her the spot but set up a control mechanism of "objective and measurable" goals that has to be met in order for him/her to maintain the job. Now that is a better way of dealing with a situation where there is a risk of losing a talent. The blessing in this situation is that Battie is an ultimate professional, and he could be convinced of what is in the best interests of the team for the future.

    Now all this stuff of what Hill may or my not do, or any other coach may do, does not concern me. All I am concerned with is to ensure that Darko realizes his full potentials since that matter is very essential to Magic's future. Hill may ignorantly choose a different route, but I hope that the word gets around on this suggestion as a better and safer route. I am sure Mr. Schmitz is not privy to these new techniques, so I would give no weight to his old style approach. I hope this makes sense.

  • At 3:38 PM, Blogger Big Figure said…

    Matt,with all due respect,i disagree with what you call imperical evidence/research,and more importantly "motivation by denial" is not a correct label for making an athlete earn his position,further there is no label for such action,its a respected and fundamental part of sports to make a person work hard everyday in practice,therefore not needing a label,i watched players take spots from guys at every level i've played on,high character individuals stand right up in the face of what you call imperical evidence,would you quit a team/go in the tank because you werent given the starting position??? I have no idea what your talking about again with all due respect,but jameer nelson is a great example of "beating a guy out/earing your position" (those would be the only labels for darko's situation)he sat behind steve francis even though everyone knew he was the better player,consistently outplaying steve in practice everyday,did you ever see jameer go in the tank??? Nope,jameer kept playing so good and just wouldnt be denied,that coach hill tried to move steve over to the SG,but because steve wasnt able to make it work there either,otis eventually traded him,and now jameer has his position because he earned it,and more importantly the team understand's why jameer is their leader,because he was the best at his position and he proved it, cato is a horrible example,becuase kelvin's game doesnt offer improvement at this point in his career,he was what he was,a big man with no skills,anyone who has played basketball at a high level could see that,and cato wasnt keeping anyone on the bench,he was all we had so he had to play,and as for darko in detroit,he didnt deserve to be in the starting line-up so he wasnt,he had two all-stars in front of him,so if his talents will be wasted because he has a weak mind and cant understand that he needed to outplay one of the wallace's to get on the floor,then i dont want such a weak minded individual on the team i root for,i'll take the high character jameer nelson type's that had to work for everything they got in life,on teams i've been on nobody liked the "primadonna give him everything guy",too many times that guy failed to live up to the hype,they take advantage of that controlled environment and loses are so much easier to take when it gets blamed on the coach at the end of the day,hopefully for darko's sake he has a strong mind because whether we like it or not he's gonna have to work hard for BSH,matt we can agree to disagree,theres nothing wrong with that,but i can think of tons of situations where guys perservered so darko's no different,he doesnt deserve any special treatment,and he's not gonna get any,so let the BSH bashing continue,because that is who any of your beefs will be with!

  • At 6:25 PM, Blogger OVERWADED said…

    I think the examples here have been completely misunderstood and taken out of context.

    I will never consider Battie a quality starter(7 ppg 5 rbs). It can work with him, but only so far.

    Darko is my choice. He is the x-factor and has limitless potential.

    I'm not talking about it anymore at least until preseason starts.

  • At 6:59 PM, Blogger Matt said…

    Big Figure, you are way out of the line, and I do not have the time or the stamina to put everything in perspective for you, since this blog does not need to turn into a classroom environment.

    1 - Empirical research is a scientific study and you cannot disagree with it.

    2 - Motivation by denial is also the scientific term for conditional granting of a position or possession, and you cannot argue with it.

    3 - All other stuff about Jameer is totally irrelevant. Jameer is a mature guy who went through 4 years of college while Darko is just a kid in a totally foreign environment.

    4 - If you agree with Darko's talents, then the question is what is the best way to make it work with the kid, and I gave you the latest scientific technique, but you keep arguing. So I give up; have it your way.

    5 - By the way the acronym BSH is the title that Ken has given to Hill and stands for Baby Sitter Hill. If you think Hill is a good coach, you should stop using it.

  • At 7:42 PM, Blogger OVERWADED said…

    I can't argue that.

  • At 10:40 AM, Blogger Big Figure said…

    Matt,if my comments came across out of line i apologize,my intention was to give my opinion and give you some perspective on what i have witnessed actually playing the game in my career,but it doesnt seem like you wanna hear any of it,it seems like if darko's not starting or he isnt given the position your going to go postal on BSH,so i'll leave the business/management/organization/empirical evidence stuff to you and i'll go back to just breaking down games,i think you brought me to the blog because you noticed my three keys to victory on the sentinel blog,and i appreciated the invite then and i still do (bunch of idiots over there)i think all of you guys are cool and intelligent guys,and after going back and reading all the posts,we're saying the same thing anyway,we all think darko should start,you say give it too him,i say make him earn it,but bottom line we want the same thing,and by the way i hate BSH,but i know what BSH is gonna do just by the way he gave battie a starting job to start training camp,also where did i say he's a good coach???(ken gave him that name but i was the one to shorten it into three capitol letters)but anyway lets have a good season while we have a good team,boy its seems we're all in mid-season form thats for sure,lets go magic!

  • At 1:05 PM, Blogger Matt said…

    Big Figure, every contributor here is a valuable asset and we all mean well for the Magic, and of course, we all agree to disagree. your first hand basketball experience is greatly appreciated, but that does not give you immunity when it comes to hot debates on the future of the team that we all love.

  • At 3:23 PM, Blogger SunSportsTV said…

    Matt invited me over here, but now I think he might be trying to kill me... seriously, as one of the last twelve NBA fans on earth, I apppreciate a good debate.

    Up front, let me say that as a former Magic employee, I tend to sympathize with GM's and coaches in general. Yes, there are some bad ones, but even the so-called "idiots" are more intimately involved in the game than you and I could ever dream of being. None of them make decisions for the hell of it -- okay, except maybe Isiah.

    So why should Howard be a center and not a PF? Because in the Eastern Conference, there's only one center who can match up with him offensively, and he's on the tail end of his career down in Miami (and was never a big fan of defense even when a youthful member of the Magic). Exploiting matchups is a very big deal to coaches and GM's. Fact is, Howard is a bitch to guard and now has the body to match up with any center in the conference. Head to head, Howard beats just about every other player at the center spot in the East.

    As for Darko - I'm cautiously optimistic that he will turn out to be as good as he appeared for the final few months of last season. My only concern about him is this: Detroit didn't play him for a reason. There HAD to be a reason. If he's that talented - and it appears he is - something else had to be at work behind the scenes, and it's not just a glut of talent on that Pistons title team from a couple years back. Again, coaches and GM's make decisions based on reason, not emotion. Looks like Dumars correctly spotted the talent when he drafted Darko ahead of Carmelo - but then the kid didn't play, and they traded him for contract space. As a lifetime NBA guy, that makes me nervous.

    Assuming that he was A. young, B. homesick, C. whatever, and is now happy and acclimated, I see no reason not to give him big minutes in Orlando. Starter or bench is irrelevant - what matters is who's on the floor in crunch time. If Darko comes off the bench, but plays 30 minutes a game and is on the floor for the final two minutes, that's maximizing his value as much as naming him a starter. Personally, I'd love to think that the Magic have enough depth to use him as a spark off the bench, but I have no problem with him starting, either. He's a long-range threat as a PF, can block shots, and will outsize most of the players he matches up with (that exploiting matchup thing again). If his ego requires him to be a "starter" in order to be happy, do it. Like I said, it really doesn't matter as much as we think it does.

    Hope that makes sense. Thanks for the invite. See you on TV.

    Whit Watson
    Sun Sports


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