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, October 31, 2007

Magic break open close game in third to coast past MIL

Leading 48-46 at the half, the Magic used torrid 3 pt shooting in the third quarter, led by RLewis and HTurkoglu, and started the season off with a rousing 102-83 victory over MIL. In the 3rd qr., the Magic shot a blistering 7 of 8 from 3 pt range, with Lewis and Turkoglu combining for 19 pts on 5 of 5 3 pt shooting, while the team outscored MIL 35-19.

Lewis led the Magic with 26 pts (9 of 13 FGs), followed by Turkoglu with 24 pts (8 of 15 FGs); DHoward had a solid game with 16 pts (8 of 10 FTs), 12 rebs, and 7 blocks; JNelson added 10 pts, 7 asts, and just 2 TOs. Three reserves added 6 pts each: CArroyo, KDooling, and AFoyle. MIL was led by Michael Redd with 25 pts and reserve Bobby Simmons added 18 pts.

The Magic (32 of 73 FGs, 43.8%) outscored MIL (33 of 87, 37.9%) from the field 76-70. The Magic (12 of 22, 54.5%) dominated MIL (4 of 17, 23.5%) from 3 pt range. The Magic (26 of 35) outshot MIL (13 of 22) from the FT line. The Magic were outrebounded by MIL 48-42, including 18-9 offensively. The Magic took good care of the ball, with a 15/10 AST/TO ratio; MIL's was 16/14.

A very encouraging opening night performance by the Magic, especially seeing Lewis shoot so well after an injury-plagued preseason. Magic host DET on FRI night.


  • At 11:13 PM, Blogger Mike from Illinois said…

    Wow, how about that for an opener? Great to see the Magic continue their preseason trend of shooting the 3 ball so well, and also FTs for most of the game.

    Who says the Magic will be weak defensively... only allowing 83 pts to a normally high-scoring Bucks team.

    I didn't hear anything officially, but I can only assume that Ariza and Redick weren't 100%, and that's why they didn't see much playing time.

    I know last year we would always crucify Brian Hill for playing Pat Garrity. I guess SVG didn't have much of a choice but to have Garrity as the first guy coming off the bench with the other guys not being a hundred percent. Garrity did contribute 4 rebs and 2 pts in the 25 mins, and this was a good win, so I won't complain.

    This is only one win, and it's a long season, but we'll get a chance to really see how far the Magic have come in the last 6 months when they play DET on FRI.

    OVERWADED, anxious to hear your observations since you were at the game.

  • At 5:53 AM, Blogger OVERWADED said…

    The game was a lot of fun. Obviously it got a little more fun when the Magic busted open a big lead in the 3rd quarter; but I still left concerned.

    One, as mentioned, Redick and Ariza were used very limited, why, I don't know? They both continued to play throughout the night, just very limted.

    Two, Garrity played a lot, and we got away with it. But if Garrity is going to have to play nearly that much, or check into the game in the 1st quarter on a regular basis, we're going to have problems.

    Three, Dooling was only used as a back up two guard. Now if Ariza and/or Redick were not feeling great, that's understandable, but I hope this isn't something I'm going to have to see on a regular basis.

    Last, the team didn't really seem to be interested in running all too much. I'm not saying our half court offense didn't look good, because it did, especially when the 3-ball started dropping. But I'd have liked to see them push the ball just a little more.

    Enough of my pessimism... It was a great game, and nice start to the season.

    Rashard looked great. Dwight was a BEAST on the defensive end. I can't remember the last time I've seen a guy blocking shots into the crowd the way Dwight was tonight.

    The fact of the matter is, if I can complain this much about game 1 and the Magic still stomped a talented Bucks team into the ground, that can't be anything but a positive.

  • At 9:54 AM, Blogger Matt said…

    What came to my mind in comparison with the team run by Brian Hill was the freedom of players. First, all were allowed to shoot when the opportunity was there; even Carlos and Keyon made a 3-pointer. Second, no one was punished for occasional mistakes or bad shooting; Jameer had a horrendous shooting night at 2-10 and was there throughout to do things that he was doing right.

    As for Trevor and J.J., I don't know why they were not used more. I guess there was some injury concern that the coach did not want to aggravate. SVG is well aware of what he has in all players available to him.

    As for Garrity, we have to remember how thin we are on the front-line. He shot well in the preseason - not too well last night - but he could be used at nights where matches revolve more around offense not defense. I doubt he will be used as much against Detroit.

    I agree that using Keyon as a back-up shooting guard is not the best option. I like to see him involved as a PG where the pace of the game could pick up. Last night, it seems to me that Keith got into early foul trouble, and if we assume that Trevor and J.J. were not 100%, Keyon would be the natural substitute to slow down Redd.

    Regardless, that was a good win and we have to look forward to the early-season test against Detroit on Friday

  • At 11:15 AM, Blogger WeRDevos said…

    The first half had me worried. Looked like the old Magic under Hill.

    Second half gives me hope, but must admit that Milwuakee is a very bad team. The Chinese guy looks like a fraud.

    The best part of the game to me was they figured out how to stop Redd and Simmons in the second half. All last year Magic were torched by guys like them and never adjusted.

    Must be the coaching.

    I really like the number 9 guy. I had never seen him play before last night. It takes him a nanosecond to catch and shoot.

  • At 2:15 PM, Blogger Mike from Illinois said…

    From Brian Schmitz's Basketblog:

    When a reporter asked him if Ariza had fallen behind, Van Gundy bristled and said, "We were trying to get more shooting on the floor. It's tough. It's situational. We're not real settled into a rotation if I have to play 11 guys."

    I guess whoever plays on a given night will depend on the matchups for that night's game, like Matt said.

    It's not going to be every game that Garrity plays 25 minutes and Ariza and Redick play only 7 or 8 minutes each, or Dooling is the first SG off the bench.

    It'll be interesting to see how the rotation develops from game to game.

  • At 2:26 PM, Blogger Mike from Illinois said…

    Here is Chicago Tribune basketball writer Sam Smith's prediction on the Magic season:

    Getting Rashard Lewis isn't enough to replace Darko Milicic and Grant Hill. Dwight Howard is beginning to forget he's there to defend and rebound. Just not enough pieces, though coaching is better.

    Smith predicts the Magic to finish 11th in the East.

    I normally respect Smith as a very knowlegeable writer, but he is way off base here, especially with his comment about Dwight. Also, even though he admits the coaching is better, and with the Lewis signing, he doesn't think the Magic can finish better than the 40-42 from last season?

    He picks the Bucks to finish eighth in the East, saying they are deep and did a good job of retaining talent.

    Smith says his predictions are for entertainment purposes only. That's obvious, as I had a good laugh reading them.

  • At 3:08 PM, Blogger WeRDevos said…

    I am so freeeekin sick of over rated Grant Hill. Grant Hill's career has sucked, with 0 playoff series wins to his credit. He is the A-Rod of basketball. If the NBA were a stock market I'd be selling short on Phoenix.

    Darko was all about unfulfilled promise. Darko is still about unfulfilled promise. There are at least 9 guys picked after him in the 2003 draft that are still better than him.

    Dwight Howard is now the best defensive center in the East. He spent all summer with the USA team proving it.

    And clearly no one in the east watches the west coast games because anyone who can draw a conclusion that Rashard Lewis is not miles better than Grant Hill has not seen Lewis play. Make that miles better than Grant Hill & Darko combined.

    And Turk sure looked like he was having fun last night sharing the court with Howard & Lewis.

  • At 3:51 PM, Blogger Matt said…

    Come on WeRDevos. If you need to be mad at somebody, let it be Sam Smith. Rashard Lewis is a lot better than Grant Hill at this point of time, but he is not better than Grant and Darko combined. Grant was our best player in an open court last year, and a consistent 15-20 point producer. Darko is still a kid who was never nurtured to his potentials but the doors are not slammed at him. So let's put those guys aside and talk about Magic today.

    I had a post on Whit Watson's blog when he had a prediction on the current NBA season. I agree that the Magic is somewhere in between 4-6 seed in the East and no less than second in the Southeast division, most probably finishing 1st. The coaching change itself is at least worth 7-10 games but they have glaring deficiencies in front court that would be exploited by good teams. The PG position is also an area of concern, especially now that Jameer has the contract in his pocket, and next summer we could not expect any upgrade. A wise GM would have kept the fire under Jameer, Keyon and Carlos for the whole season. The salaries of two out of three combined with Garrity's salary could have landed a high prized PG.

  • At 5:31 PM, Blogger WeRDevos said…

    It's not worth it getting mad at the Sam Smith's and Chris Sheridan's of the world. They are lazy and only occassionaly rise to the level of mediocrity. That big institutions like the Trib and ESPN employ them is worth more ire.

    I have no problem with Nelson getting paid. If the Magic are to improve it will be from an in-season trade. Howard's big raise next year already had them out of the free agent hunt except for the exception.

    If they need PG or PF help it will have to come buy moving the expiring contracts of Arroyo, Dooling, Garrity, Augustine, Outlaw, etc. Last year they passed on moving Hill, Milicic, Diener, etc. and were a poor team. Hopefully they do better this year if the need arises.


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