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, May 18, 2010

Game 2 ECF Preview

8:30 PM ESPN

From the Orlando Magic press release:

The Orlando Magic will try to utilize their Game 1 defeat to the Boston Celtics as a wake-up call and a reason to exert even more effort at practice as they gear up for Game 2, which tips off on Tuesday at 8:30 p.m. ET on ESPN.

Game 1 obviously didn’t go as planned for the Magic, but as this team has proven all season long, they are driven to bounce back from adversity.

Sunday’s loss was the first defeat for Orlando since April 2. It had won 14 consecutive games, including an 8-0 start to the postseason.

“Our team has responded to everything,” Magic Head Coach Stan Van Gundy said. “Our guys aren't going to fall apart.”

The best news from Game 1 was that the Magic battled back from a 20-point deficit, 17 in the fourth quarter, to close within two in the final 10 seconds. They showed tremendous determination and resilience, but Boston managed to hit its free throws to seal the victory.

“It's going to be a battle,” said Vince Carter, who led Orlando with 23 points. “It’s going to be a war.”

The outcome of this series may come down to how well Dwight Howard, the league’s best defensive player, performs. The four-time All-Star didn’t find his offensive rhythm in Game 1, finishing with 13 points on 3-of-10 shooting from the field.

“I just have to come back in Game 2 and not try to force anything,” Howard said. “But at the same time just still be aggressive.”

Many NBA critics and spectators are already blaming Orlando’s meager shooting performance (5-of-22 from 3-point range) on the extended layoff. While the Celtics just came off an exhilarating series triumph over the top-seeded Cavaliers on the Eastern Conference Semifinals, the Magic earned rest for their dominant performance against the Hawks.

But, Orlando doesn’t think rust had anything to do with it.

“We were just anxious,” D12 said. “I think they did a lot of good things on defense.”

Game 2 now sets up to be the most important contest of the year for the Magic. It’s extremely rare for teams, especially when they started the series at home, to overcome a 2-0 deficit and advance.

There is no doubt that Van Gundy and the rest of the coaching staff will have the Magic prepared to even up the series before heading to Boston for Games 3 and 4.

Here is the complete preview from Yahoo! Sports.

Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports details in his column about how tough the Boston defense really was in Game 1.

Here is a column from cbssports.com columnist Gregg Doyel that is very harsh on the Magic's Dwight Howard.

Bleacher Report writer Adam Davis writes how the Magic showed their toughness in the Game 1 loss.

The Magic are 7 point favorites at -330 odds to win Game 2.


  • At 6:01 AM, Blogger Mike from Illinois said…

    Honestly, if the Magic didn't learn anything from their Game 1 loss and don't come out and play better in Game 2, then the Magic don't deserve to win this series, but I'm confident we'll see a much better Magic team than the one we saw on Sunday and the series will be tied going to Boston.

  • At 9:27 AM, Blogger Matt said…

    I agree. Patience is the operative word. Magic should be patient if their offense doesn't run fluidly due to BOS's defense, and quickly concentrate on defense. BOS had it so easy on offense, and if that happens again - and we don't match their offensive output -, we would be going to BOS down 0-2.

  • At 1:40 PM, Blogger Matt said…

    Wojnarowski is clearly biased in his writing. BOS is an old team, and sooner or later this would show up. They are lucky that after tonight they will have 3 days to rest before they play again in BOS, but from thereon, all games are separated by only one day. But first things first, Magic needs to win the game tonight, and they will. Dwight needs to keep his cool on the offensive end and channel his energy towards the defensive end. Rebounds need to be secured and guards should not be allowed to roam in the paint.

  • At 2:21 PM, Blogger Big Figure said…

    First thing first. Boston made that game ugly. After watching the replay,the game was actually tough to watch. The magic had plenty of open shots and just missed partly due to them rushing everything and trying to play offense for the first time in the play-offs against a defense who wont double dwight. Most of our offense was one-on-one and we didnt get into any secondary offensive sets,we would execute one offensive set then shoot the ball. Alot of times the celtics would get shots off of the second or third pick-and-roll within one offensive set. I wish i could give the celtics a bunch of credit but they werent that great offensively or defensively in the first half we were just that bad.

  • At 2:31 PM, Blogger Big Figure said…

    So tonight? Two simple things. (1) Turnovers. I said it before game one that if the magic can protect the ball the magic will win big. The celtics cant match our offensive production when we play sound,they want to make the game ugly and score a ton of two point shots and make you miss yours. We are the best three point shooting team in the league,we dont always need three's out of dwight double teams. If we make them miss we'll get three's in transition,i think the guys need to remember defense and taking care of the ball always come first. (2) Dwight has to score in the twenty's rather than the teens. Bottom line,dwight has to start killing kendrick perkins. When dwight scores it sets our defense because everybody can get back,PP's first basket of the game was a transition three. Rasheed does a pretty good job on dwight and always has,dwight has to at least get to the line when sheed is guarding him and never let sheed get under his skin "just keep playing". And when big baby is in the game they should try and go back-door lobs for dwight.

  • At 2:36 PM, Blogger Big Figure said…

    And one defensive adjustment SVG needs to make is VC needs to be forcing PP to his left. PP went right all game and got to the basket with ease causing some three point plays,problem is PP is old and isnt supposed to be killing us like that. We have to do a better job on him and i would even like to see MB and JJ play with VC out of the game,that way MB could get some minutes trying to slow PP and JJ could run off screens chasing RA.

  • At 12:57 AM, Anonymous Tom said…

    Watching the game, and not listening to the unbelieveably biased commentators, you can tell that Jameer Nelson is not the right point guard for that team. He dribbles around too much, he plays bad d, he won't accept any critique and he just doesn't pass. Last year they were breezin by with Alston because he passes. This team is way to talented to play this poorly. They are primarily a jump shooting team that NEEDS TO GET THE BALL TO DWIGHT ON PICK AND ROLLS, not have some ego maniac dribble around and hock up some crappy shot. Why does ESPN love Jameer Nelson so much. They refuse to critisize him and end up blaming the coach or Howard. Howard needs someone to get him the ball so he can have a rhythm. ESPN loves tghe guy, they give you his bio every time he does something mediocre. bol

  • At 8:24 AM, Blogger Big Figure said…

    Tom,thanks for mentioning the elephant in the room. I completely agree with you in the difference a year makes. Last year RA did a great job offensively and defensively,but the most important thing was he went toe-to-toe with rondo and faired much better at 6ft2 than jameer does at 5ft10. Offensively 9 points from jameer just aint gonna get it done,and because of jameer's lack of height the celtics are basically just keeping a man trailing him so that he cant get off any good shots. Game one the whole first half jameer wasnt taking shots,same thing last night but you start to realize watching the game that jameer cant get off any shots because he's the smallest guy on the court.


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