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.

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

Game review: Pacers (11-23) 97, Magic (24-10) 90

The Magic, who were 11 1/2 point favorites going into the game with Indiana, suffered through a woeful game offensively and never had the lead in the fourth quarter on their way to an inexplicable loss, their second loss in a row to a sub-.500 team, and to a team in the Pacers who were coming off a 43 point loss to New York Sunday and who were without their best player in Danny Granger.

The Magic never had more than a one point lead in the first quarter, and trailed going into the second quarter 24-19. The Magic briefly held a 27-26 lead in the second before the Pacers went on a 13-2 run for their largest lead in the first half at 10 points, and led going into the half 45-39. The Magic clawed their way back in the third quarter to briefly tie the game at 60 with under three minutes remaining before the Pacers regained the lead once again going into the fourth quarter 68-62. Two three pointers by the Magic tied the game at 68 to open the fourth, but the Pacers went on a 20-8 run for an insurmountable 88-76 lead with just over 5 minutes remaining on their way to the surprising victory.

Magic leading scorers

Jameer Nelson: 16 points (7 of 15 FGs), 4 assists
Mickael Pietrus (bench): 16 points (6 of 9 FGs)
Matt Barnes: 13 points (6 of 10 FGs), 7 rebounds
J.J. Redick (bench): 13 points (3 of 5 3 PT FGs)
Dwight Howard: 11 points (2 of 6 FGs), 15 rebounds, 5 turnovers, 2 blocks

Overall Game Statistics

FG%: IND 42.9% (36 of 84) ORL 38.4% (33 of 86)
3 PT FG%: ORL 40.9% (9 of 22) IND 31.2% (5 of 16)
FT%: IND 69.0% (20 of 29) ORL 62.5% (15 of 24)
REB: ORL 52 (16 offensive) IND 44 (9 offensive)
AST/TO: IND 20/13 ORL 12/20

Other game notes and stats:

-Five Pacers scored in double figures, including a career-high 26 points from C Roy Hibbert, along with 8 rebounds and 4 blocks; G Luther Head added 18 points
-Vince Carter (2 for 15, 6 points) and Rashard Lewis (2 for 8, 4 points) combined to shoot 4 for 23 for 10 points
-Howard fouled out in 28 minutes
-Pietrus, Redick, and Marcin Gortat (8 points, 8 rebounds) combined for 37 points off the Magic bench on 13 of 21 shooting, including 5 of 8 three point FG shooting
-Lewis, Carter, Howard, Jason Williams, and Ryan Anderson combined to shoot 7 of 38 from the field for 24 points
-Lewis almost had as many blocked shots (3) as points scored (4)
-The Pacers' starters outscored the Magic starters 74-50, including their starting frontline outscoring the Magic's starting frontline 50-28
-Only Anthony Johnson did not see any action for the Magic

Here is the complete box score and recap from nba.com


  • At 3:27 AM, Blogger Ken said…

    What a pathetic performance.. After the embaressing loss to the Bulls I expected the Magic to come out firing on all cylinders.. What a disappointment. What was just as agrivating as this loss was seeing Carter and Howard yukking it up on the bench with 10 seconds left to go. To me, that speaks volumes about their heart and passion to win..

    This constant early foul trouble with Howard has to stop. He has no post moves and is constantly being stripped and turning the ball over. His game has regressed. Opposing teams can now read him like a book. A couple of good, hard fouls get him annoyed and totally throws off his game. Then he starts commiting stupid fould of his own and then its bench time for him.

    I never thought i'd say this, but i'm getting tired of all these 3 point shots. There is no ball movement. Maybe 1 pass to Howard in the post and if he doesn't turn it over someone launches a 3. It has become stagnant and predictable.

    One more thing.. I think we need the old SVG back. I'm sorry if the players got their feelings hurt when Stan criticized them. Tough shit, grow a pair. They are highly paid professional grown men. If they can't take the criticizim they are in the wrong profession. The warm and fuzzy, i'm ok, you're ok, everybodys right, nobodys wrong SVG has turned this team soft.

    If the Magic continue as they are, they are a one and done playoff team at best. This team is too deep to be losing games like this. Something has to change. Quickly

  • At 4:33 AM, Blogger Mike from Illinois said…

    Some post-game quotes from the Magic, from Josh Robbins' recap in the Sentinel:

    Stan Van Gundy: "Look, we're just playing terrible," Van Gundy said. "Offensively, it's just really bad right now. We can't score. We cannot score. I don't know. I need to look at everything."

    "To be honest, I don't know what needs to be done right now," Van Gundy said. "I need to obviously try some things."

    Dwight Howard:

    "I just told the guys I know we're frustrated, and I know we're out-of-sync and not playing like we wanted to or how we hoped to play," Howard said. "We've just got to continue to fight even though everything is ugly out there. "I told 'em I'd rather have these mishaps now," he added, "instead of later on in the season or when we're going into the playoffs."

  • At 4:52 AM, Blogger Mike from Illinois said…

    A bad loss for the Magic, no question. Poor field goal shooting (38%), poor free throw shooting (62%), and a poor assist/turnover ratio (12/20) against an Eastern Conference bottom-feeder missing its best player and a couple other key players.

    I never imagined the offense would be struggling the way it is now; and that so many Magic starters would have poor games at once.

    Carter, Lewis, and Howard all have been playing sub-par during this two game losing streak. How come VC gets 15 shot attempts, while Lewis and Howard get a combined 14 shot attempts. Jameer is not doing a good job facilitating the offense as point guard. The offense is completely out of sync now.

    Only 12 Magic assists indicates the lack of ball movement.

    A few minor positive things from the game... the performance of Pietrus, Redick, and Gortat off the bench, and Matt Barnes being the most consistent starter since he's been inserted into the starting lineup.

    It's going to take time for the team chemistry to develop offensively after all the injuries and lineup changes. The more the guys can play together, the better the chemistry should get. The season isn't even half over yet; we all know the team isn't playing to its potential, but there is time to turn this rough stretch around the Magic are going through.

    Like Howard said after the game, better that this is happening now rather than playoff time.

  • At 5:17 AM, Blogger Mike from Illinois said…

    Ken, I don't think three point shooting is the problem for the Magic, as you mentioned that you are getting tired of all the threes the Magic put up. The Magic made over 40% of their three pointers against the Pacers, and when they shoot that well from long range, they usually win.

    The problem is, when three of the starters (Carter, Lewis, and Howard shot a combined 6 for 29 for 21 points) play so bad offensively, the Magic are going to have a hard time beating anyone, regardless of how well the reserves play.

  • At 9:33 AM, Blogger Matt said…

    I refer back to my post after the loss to CHI, which was an offensive failure but not as bad as this last one. This was an example in bad offense and defense both. Then I said that the problem was in two spots; PG and PF, and I still hold the same is true. Jameer is not playing worth a starting position, and Rashard has become invisible, offensively as well as defensively. I think Jason should start at PG, and Rashard moved back to SF. If Brandon is not a good fit in PF, we should start Ryan at that position. On offense, the problems are: 1) we are not moving the ball well - something Jason and AJ were doing as good as expected; 2) the players are engaged in a lot of one-on-ones - especially Vince, and this seems to be by design - but the end result is that volume shooters like Rashard never find a rhythm; 3) players are tight now - and that is why the shooting percentage is down - and SVG needs to calm them down; and 4) The team looks tired, and this could be the result of too many back-to-back games or hard practices. The coach needs to give them some rest to re-energize. This may just happen on the tough West Coast trip when they may not have enough time for practice.

    Regardless, the team as it plays now could not be considered an elite team since they are involved in too many close games with unworthy teams, and now these miserable back-to-back losses.


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