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Orlando Magic

Magic Battles The League’s Best And Falls Just Short

Cedric Donaldson

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sportsclubflorida.com

What a week of basketball the Orlando Magic have had. Orlando did not win every game, but they demonstrated that they are a team with a lot of talent and promise. One could argue that the Magic should have beaten both the Phoenix Suns in the beginning of the week and the Philadelphia 76ers at the end, but in the end they came up just short.

The week began with a close loss to the Western Conference-leading Phoenix Suns on Tuesday night. This game came down to the wire, with Orlando seconds away from forcing OT if not for Mikal Bridges’ amazing block on Franz Wagner’s 27-foot three-point jumper with 4.2 seconds remaining in regulation. The final margin of victory was 102-99. Phoenix was without two of its key players, Chris Paul and Devin Booker, but was led by center Deandre Ayton, who had 19 rebounds and 21 points, and guard Landry Shamet, who scored 21 points on 6-of-12 shooting. Wendell Carter Jr. led Orlando with 20 points and 12 rebounds. This was a huge confidence booster for a young Orlando squad, as it showed that they could compete with one of the NBA’s toughest teams.

On Wednesday, the Magic traveled to the Smoothie King Center to take on the New Orleans Pelicans. Orlando dominated this game, eking out a 108-102 victory over the Pelicans. This was a statement victory for the Magic, who faced a desperate Pelicans club coming off consecutive losses to the Denver Nuggets and Memphis Grizzlies. The Magic scorched the Pelicans for 30 points in the first quarter while keeping them to 17. Cole Anthony led the way with 19 points on 6-of-9 shooting from the field, including 3-of-6 from beyond the arc, while Gary Harris chipped in with 16 points off the bench. The Magic shot 47% from the field and 84% from the foul line (22 of 26).

Orlando resumed their winning ways on Friday night with a 118-110 home victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves. This game was a fight, as neither team held a commanding lead until the Magic pulled away in the final three minutes of regulation. Orlando went on a 9-to-1 run to close out the game and secure the victory. Mo Bamba had a monster game, scoring 27 points on 10 of 15 shooting while pulling down 12 rebounds and blocking two shots.

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The Magic had an opportunity to cap the weekend on a three-game winning streak with a victory over James Harden, Joel Embiid, and the Philadelphia 76ers on Sunday. Unfortunately, they were unable to finish the weekend with a victory, falling 116-114 in overtime against the 76ers.

On Tuesday, March 15, 2022, at 7 p.m., the Magic will host the resurgent Brooklyn Nets. The Brooklyn Nets have been one of the most surprising teams in the NBA on and off the court. They currently sit at the eighth spot of the Eastern Conference with a record of 35-33. Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant are the Nets’ two leaders. The Nets will be a tough challenge for the Magic but if Orlando can play like they did this past week, they have a chance to pull off the upset.

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Orlando Magic

Orlando Magic Linked to Career 38.5 3PT Shooter Player

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Malik Beasley

The Orlando Magic are one of the teams expected to pursue Malik Beasley once he hits the free agency market this July.

The Magic, who have already been linked to several incoming free agents with respectable shooting acumen, are reportedly among the teams showing some level of interest in Beasley.

Other teams linked to the sweet-shooting veterans are the Houston Rockets and Golden State Warriors.

“Houston has identified floor spacing and shooting as an area of need this offseason privately and publicly and have an interest in veteran sharpshooter Malik Beasley,” a source close to the situation told the New York Times.

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Beasley started 77 games for the Milwaukee Bucks this past season, converting 41.3 percent of his shots from 3-point distance. He’s a career 38.5 percent three-point shooter.

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Orlando Magic

Magic Have Interest in Sweet-Shooting Point Guard

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D'Angelo Russell

The Orlando Magic has reportedly shown interest in potential free agent guard D’Angelo Russell, the Athletic reported on Wednesday, May 21.

Russell, who can opt out of his $18.7 million player option with the Los Angeles Lakers, is expected to draw interest from teams looking to shore up their shooting in their backcourt.

The 28-year-old point guard averaged 18.0 points, 3.1 rebounds and 6.3 assists in 32.7 minutes per game while shooting 45.6 FG% and 41.5 3PT% during the 2023-24 season.

His numbers dipped in the playoffs as he averaged 14.2 points on 38.4 FG% and 31.8 3PT% in the five-game series with the Denver Nuggets.

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The Magic direly need some reliable shooting in their lineup for next season after shooting 35.2% from deep in the regular-season.

Aside from Russell, the Magic are also rumored as a potential destination for Golden State Warriors shooting guard Klay Thompson.

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Orlando Magic

Orlando Magic Linked to Big-Time Scorer in Free Agency

According to reputable NBA insider Ramona Shelburne, the Magic are one of the teams eyeing the service of NBA All-Star Paul George.

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Paul George

The offseason officially started for the Orlando Magic seconds after the final buzzer of their 94-106 Game 7 loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers on Sunday. According to reputable NBA insider Ramona Shelburne, the Magic are one of the teams eyeing incoming free agent Paul George of the Los Angeles Clippers.

“There’s two teams that are paying very close attention to Paul George: the Orlando Magic and the Philadelphia 76ers, because both of them have the money to throw at him and need a wing just like him, a veteran guy,” Shelburne said on “the Brian Windhorst & the Hoops Collective” podcast on May 1.

Sportrac projected the Magic to have a practical cap space of $19 million, but their maximum possible cap space could balloon to as high as $58 million if they forego their team options on Jonathan Isaac, Joe Ingles, and Moritz Wagner.

Despite turning 34 once the free agency window opens, George is expected to be a hot commodity on the market because of his reputation as a flat-out scorer and above-average wing defender. He’ll be looking for his final max-level deal of at least $45 million per year before he enters the twilight years of his career.

George averaged 22.6 points on 47.1 FG%, 5.2 rebounds, and 3.2 assists per game during the regular season with the Clippers. His scoring production dipped a bit during the six-game series against the Mavericks, putting up 19.5 points on 41.1 FG% and 36.7 3PT%.

NBA experts expect the Magic to bring over either a legitimate shooter or a scorer who will help address the lack of shooting on their roster. George, a career 38.5 3PT% shooter, would be a solid addition to a resurging team like the Magic.

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