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Orlando Magic

Two Magic Blowouts: What went wrong?

Cedric Donaldson

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The Orlando Magic have undoubtedly had their share of ups and downs. They are currently rebuilding and are coming off two humiliating losses and one tight victory. While losing is expected during a rebuilding year, no fan wants to see their team in the news for allowing a player to score 50 points on them. That is just what occurred to the Magic last week, as they lost two consecutive games. The Magic were blown out by the Brooklyn Nets, 150-108, on Tuesday night, followed by another painful loss, 134-120, to the Detroit Pistons. Fortunately, the Magic prevail over the Thunder despite their clear disadvantage. What went wrong with the Magic?

The Magic enabled Brooklyn Nets star Kyrie Irving to score a career-high 60 points on 20 of 31 shooting, including 8 of 12 from beyond the arc. They not only allowed him to score 60, but they allowed him to do so in style. He drew multiple defenders, scored numerous three-pointers, and made countless trips to the free throw line. The Magic simply did not have a response for Kyrie, as evidenced by the scoreboard. The Nets shot 60% from the field and 59% from behind the three-point arc as a team. Magic defenses did not exist. On the other hand, Brooklyn limited Orlando to 37% shooting from the field and 36% from behind the three-point line. Cole Anthony led Orlando with 19 points on 5-of-11 shooting from the floor.

The loss was difficult for the Magic, but they attempted to rebound the against the Detroit Pistons. Unfortunately, they were unable to do so and were defeated once more, this time by a score of 14 points. Orlando faced a similar situation in the second game. The Magic surrendered another 50-plus point effort, this time to Pistons small forward Saddiq Bey. Saddiq finished with 51 points on 17 of 27 shooting, including 10 of 14 from beyond the arc, and nine rebounds. On both ends of the floor, he was a force to be reckoned with, and the Magic had no answer for him. The Pistons shot 50% from the field and 46% from beyond the arc as a team. Orlando shot 48% from the field and 36% from behind the three-point line. Franz Wagner led Orlando with 26 points on ten-of-fifteen shooting. In the end, Orlando’s offense simply couldn’t keep up with Detroit’s. The Magic performed a better job defensively, but it wasn’t enough.

Orlando overcame the struggling Oklahoma City Thunder in their final game of the week. OKC was without their top two players, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and Josh Giddey, who are currently on an eight-game losing run. The Magic should have capitalized on this, but they won by only five points. This demonstrates the Magic’s inability to compete against superior teams.

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What went wrong with the Magic? It’s simple; they lack a viable offensive strategy, and their defense has been non-existent. The Magic have a great deal of work ahead of them. They need to find a way to strengthen their offense and their defense. If they can accomplish it, they may be able to begin winning games. Until then, the Magic will face a difficult road. In a rebuild, these types of losses are expected, but it is still hard to watch as a fan. The Magic will look to bounce back against the Golden State Warriors on Tuesday night. We can only hope they put up a better fight.

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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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