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.

Friday, July 31, 2009

Stan Van Gundy undecided on who the fifth starter will be

Here are excerpts from an article on orlandosentinel.com by Josh Robbins about how Magic coach Stan Van Gundy thinks the opening night starting lineup might look like:

Van Gundy said four players — Vince Carter, Dwight Howard, Rashard Lewis and Jameer Nelson — "would have to perform pretty poorly to play themselves out of the starting lineup."

For now, however, Van Gundy said he doesn't have his mind made up on the fifth starter. The competition for that spot will begin when the Magic begin training camp on Sept. 29. Probably the only guys who won't contend for a starting role are reserve point guard Anthony Johnson and Gortat because of the positions they play.

Last season, the Magic relied on an unorthodox formula offensively, with Howard surrounded by four strong perimeter players who were comfortable shooting from 3-point range.

But this upcoming season, that formula could change a bit if Bass cracks the starting lineup and Lewis moves to small forward. At 6 foot 8 and 240 pounds, Bass should offer a physical presence and additional offensive rebounding, but he also would give the Magic a more conventional look.

"I think we certainly have that option to play that way, but I think at the same time, we've still got very much the ability to spread people out and play the way we've played in the past," Van Gundy said.

"Brandon certainly gives us a chance to play more conventionally at times and get a more physical presence, but at the same time, I think we also can do even more in terms of keeping the floor spread out."

Van Gundy added he was excited about (Matt) Barnes' signing. At 6 foot 7 and 225 pounds, Barnes is best suited to small forward, but he has played on occasion at power forward.

The Magic's top remaining priority is to add another point guard, but unless they can work out a sign-and-trade deal with another team, there are fewer options. Already over the salary cap, Orlando can only offer free agents minimum salaries because it used its entire mid-level exception of $5.854 million to sign Barnes and Bass, and used its biannual exception last year to sign Johnson.


  • At 11:35 PM, Blogger Matt said…

    SVG is probably intrigued by keeping Rashard at PF and starting MP at SF. That would be an upgrade defensively compared to Hedo at that post while any shortage offensively could be more than offset by Vince's firepower.

    I prefer starting Bass or Anderson at PF mainly because starting MP at SF would thin out our substitution at SG and SF positions. Having that said the possibility is there for SVG to tinker with the team's structure.

  • At 5:45 PM, Blogger Big Figure said…

    I think MP has to start. To play the way we play,we like to see how teams want to defend us to start games and you cant do that if they can sag the defense because a traditional PF is on the floor. We will have the best starting five in the league with MP out there,five guys who can get you twenty on any given night. No other team can say that with real confidence.


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