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, January 09, 2008

Awful first half costs Magic in loss to undermanned SAC

Going up against injury-plagued SAC, who were missing Kevin Martin, Ron Artest, and Mike Bibby, the Magic came out surprisingly flat and trailed at the half 53-38. The Magic briefly cut the lead to 6 in the third qtr, only to see SAC (13-20) extend to a 88-69 margin with about 7 mins remaining. The Magic finally woke up, going on a 31-16 run to close the game to make the final score more respectable, losing 104-100. The Magic (22-14, 15-6 road) came as close as 103-100.

Four players scored in double figures for the Magic, led by DHoward with 29 pts (11 of 13 FGs, 7 of 8 FTs), 15 rebs, but 6 TOs; RLewis 22 pts (6 of 11 3 PT FGs); HTurkoglu 14 pts (5 of 14 FGs); and JRedick, who led the Magic comeback attempt in the fourth qtr with 10 pts (3 of 6 FGs), all in the final 8 mins.

Five players scored in double figures for SAC, led by John Salmons with 21 pts (8 of 14 FGs) and Brad Miller with 20 pts, 6 asts.

The statistical breakdown:

FGs... SAC 36 of 72 (50%) ORL 34 of 75 (45.3%) SAC 79 ORL 78
3 PT FGs... ORL 10 of 28 (35.7%) SAC 7 of 15 (46.7%)
FTs... SAC 25 of 30 (83.3%) ORL 22 of 25 (88%)
REBs... ORL 37 SAC 34
AST/TO... ORL 19/19 SAC 17/17
BENCH... ORL 30 SAC 27

Despite the Magic scoring 38 pts in the 4th qtr to make the final score more respectable, this will have to go down as probably the worst loss of the year for the Magic, losing to a sub-.500 team missing three of its top players, and having lost 6 of its last 7 games. Magic, who lead the SE by 3 1/2 games over WAS, go right back at it WED night at the Clippers.


  • At 3:37 AM, Blogger Mike from Illinois said…

    I have a feeling that SVG will be making another change at starting PG as CArroyo (2 pts, 2 asts, 2 TOs) had his second straight ineffective game as starter. JNelson, even though he scored just 6 pts in 31+ mins off the bench, had 7 asts and 5 rebs with just 2 TOs.

    One of the few positive things that came from this game was the 4th qtr performance of JRedick (despite the TO in the final seconds) off the bench, helping spark the comeback. I hope this shows SVG that Redick can be a spark off the bench, despite his defensive shortcomings, and should be part of the rotation. It had been a week and a half since J.J. saw his last game action, so it was a good sign to see him shake off the rust and contribute right away.

    MEvans played decent off the bench also, with 9 pts and 3 asts in 24 mins.

    The only other thing the Magic did well was making FTs, as they missed only 3 of 25, with DHoward making 7 of 8.

    Some +/- numbers from the game... MEvans +15, Redick +12, JNelson +7. HTurkoglu -17, KDooling (who is supposed to be our great lockdown defender) -13, CArroyo -11.

    I don't mean to pick just on Dooling, as basically the whole team stunk on defense against SAC, allowing guys like Quincy Douby, who had been averaging 4 ppg, to score 14; and allowing Beno Udrih, who had been averaging over 13 ppg, to score 16 first half pts.

    Definitely not an All-Star night for Turk, playing against the team who originally drafted him.

    Nice to see RLewis shooting so well from 3 pt land.

    The Magic now have the same exact record (22-14) as they did one year ago after 36 games.

    Magic are now 4-3 in this stretch of 8 straight games against sub-.500 teams. I was hoping they would do no worse than 6-2 in this stretch. Oh well... maybe things will turn around against the Clippers WED night.

  • At 10:51 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I don't know what it is with Orlando these days, but last night's game was just pathetic. The Kings are without 3 of their stars, and up until the last 8 minutes or so of the game, Orlando played with no desire at all. They couldn't be bothered to at least play hard and hustle on the floor. Orlando couldn't stop the SAC's guards from the paint or blowing past them on almost all possessions.

  • At 11:00 AM, Blogger Big Figure said…

    Wow the magic seemed like they werent interested at all. Seems like the carlos arroyo honeymoon is over and he's barely staying on the floor now. SVG is finding out slowly but surely that his defense or should i say "Slow foot speed" isnt helping us slow any opposing point guards to start games,he's basically keeping the seat warm for jameer,udrich is just another point guard in the last 5 games that started of the game torching carlos which is why SVG benched his behind to start the third. Keith and keyon werent any better,to be honest they stunk like mike said,but we know what they can do defensively when the team is right,and right now there's something wrong (in my opinion bad rotations/lack of toughness is our problem). Hedo and rashard are too soft,and JJ needs to play more. Pathetic effort from the team,the only positive is they have to get right back going tonight.

  • At 11:07 AM, Blogger Big Figure said…

    If a player is good enough to be a starter,why only play him 16 minutes? This is like the second time. Things that make you go Hmmmmmmmm? SVG should just go back to what got us to 16-4 like he said in the paper yesterday,there's no fault on carlos's behalf,this is something SVG has to get right before we will get any better or out of this funk.

  • At 12:17 PM, Anonymous MagicPaul said…

    WOW! i completely agree with mike......this was the ugliest loss this year by far as we got manhandled inside and out the whole first half. Once again inconsistency is starting to kick in at the point guard spot and spreasing throughout the team. Lewis had a good shooting night but in the big picture....Does it really matter that he had a good shooting night?????

    Once again we are turning the ball over and not getting back and stopping the fastbreak!! It happened on friday night against the rockets and again last night against the kings. Turk's play last night was difficult to even watch as he looked like someone who didn't give a rat's ass that his team was losing to a team that is considered to be one of the worst in the nba. That inconsistency from him has been his problem since he came in this league which is why rick adelman and gregg poppovich let him go. Believe me i think he has earned himself an all star spot but games like last nights' from him are unacceptable period end of story.

    Moving on.... lets see how SVG takes care of last night's issues and puts a winning team on the court tonight in staples against a clippers team that also has been bitten by the injury bug. Guys seriously we need to get these wins against these teams are obviously not on our playing field when it comes to talent and athletisism!!!!

    Big figure you know that we dont always agree on things but one thing that i do completely agree with you on is SVG stepping up to the plate and getting this team back together and he should begin that process with blaming himself for the latest slumps. The fact that right now our record is identical to the one that we had last year at this point in the season is a mindblowing one!!! Wake up guys were we all not aiming for for hill's head last year when the same started happening. SvG is great fit here in orlando but mediocrity is not what orlando desires, we have a team that has the talent to be a contender in the east but for some reason we cannot win the "gimme" games and we should all have a prolem with tha gents.

  • At 6:02 PM, Blogger OVERWADED said…

    Van Gundy obviously isn't happy with a single player in our backcourt. Before the game started it was said that Arroyo and Dooling would start. When the game started, it was Arroyo and Bogans. After halftime, it was Nelson and Evans.

    Any team is going to struggle with that many changes in the backcourt.

    Still, SVG is making a bold statement; he isn't satisfied with any of our backcourt players. How much more blunt could he be by giving Redick playing time in the 4th quarter, when he's been all but buried at the end of the bench for weeks.

    Speaking of, if last nights play of Redick doesn't earn him some solid playing time, nothing will. As Mike mentioned, he sparked our comeback. He came out confident and aggressive. He took his shots, made smart plays, and when defenders crowded him, he took it strong to the basket. We need his swagger. After not playing much again this season, I’m surprised and impressed that he still carries that cockiness with him.

    As for the overall game, it was tough to watch. There are college teams that could beat the squad the Kings had out on the floor. The Magic lost, not because of anything the Kings did. The Magic lost because of what they didn't do. They played with no effort, and didn't actually TRY until the 7 minute mark in the 4th quarter. That's pathetic.

    Another note; last night helped show what I’ve been trying to get across in regards to defense. How a group of "not so good defenders" can play good team defense, as long as they bring energy and hustle. We finished the game with a poor defensive team (supposedly); Nelson, Redick, Lewis, Evans, and Howard. This group actually played with some effort, and played good team defense.

    I’m not sure who is responsible for our team’s letdowns, lack of focus, and energy. I know for the most part we have a close group of players, but whether it’s one, or more, someone needs to light a fire under these guys (on the court). A coach can only do so much. We need at least one guy out on the floor, busting ass every night the way Daryl Armstrong used to. That kind of play is contagious. Unfortunately, all kinds of play are contagious, and we’re seeing the bad version of that right now.

    The Magic really could use a true power forward. While I really like our front court of Lewis, Turk, and Howard; we still need an enforcer/true power forward. Considering that Turk is playing the best ball of his career, would it be crazy to entertain trading him? If we packaged him, with some other player/players, maybe expiring contracts we could possibly land a really good player. I’m not saying I don’t like Turk, because I do. I think he’s more than earning his pay this season, especially compared to Lewis. But if the Magic could find them a solid power forward, wouldn’t they have to consider trading Turk? Am I crazy to think that?

    I expect to get some "heat" for bringing this up. But the Magic really could use Fran Vasquez right now. After this season, he’ll only have one more season on his contract. We need to get his punk ass over here as soon as possible.

    As of today, we could trade Nelson, Bogans, Arroyo, Dooling, or Redick and it really wouldn't hurt our team...as long as we got something in return. We need some consistent production in our backcourt. But more than anything, we need consistent effort and energy from our entire team.

  • At 7:25 PM, Blogger Mike from Illinois said…

    Interesting thoughts and ideas from you guys about the current state of the Magic...

    Like a lot of people, I think the Magic would be more successful with a "true" PF in the lineup next to RLewis, with HTurkoglu moving to the bench as a sixth man. It's obvious right now that that Magic could use some real toughness at the PF spot.

    OVERWADED brought up the possibility of trading Turk along with some expiring contracts if we could possibly land a real good player in return. Well, it would have to be a really good player, otherwise I wouldn't be in favor of trading him. Turk is one of the toughest matchups for opposing teams, because of the versatility he brings on offense, and I believe he would be the ideal sixth man if we could land a legit PF.

    I agree, it would be nice to see Fran Vasquez here now, but who knows if he'll ever believe he's ready to play in the NBA?

    It's also interesting that a lot of teams are showing interest in JRedick. His keen shooting eye (despite his defensive shortcomings) would be an asset for many teams. I still hope the Magic keep him and continue to give him, say 15-18 or so mins a game off the bench.


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