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Preseason games don’t matter. Except tonight in Orlando… then it matters A LOT.

2011 December 21
by Brian Serra

 

It shouldn’t matter. It really shouldn’t matter. A silly preseason game should never matter. Let me repeat that… It shouldn’t matter. It really shouldn’t matter. A silly preseason game should never matter.

But it does. It matters so much more than it ever should, it’s almost comical.  With every Sacramento King-esque Magic performance, the star of Orlando gets pushed further and further to 100% departed. 

The Magic are playing the Miami Heat again tonight in their second and final preseason game. If you missed the first game on Sunday night, consider yourself lucky. Even though Orlando was within 7 at halftime, it was never close. The game ended with the Heat Training Camp Practice Dummies raining shots all over Orlando’s starters as Dwight stared on from the bench. Dwight said all of the right things afterwards, all while trying to pretend that his lame-duck captain status actually matters to his at-the-moment teammates.

Sadly, the Magic front office has already shown an inability to upgrade the team from last years embarassing ouster. This is what Dwight has to live with for now.

A win, or at least a strong performance, against an elite Miami team, provides the tiny glimmer of hope that Dwight needs to see. The last elite win for the Magic came on March 3rd of last year against the Heat. That victory capped a 6-1 stretch that saw the team win against OKC, New York and the Lakers as well as the Heat win. Dwight Howard hasn’t been able to hold a true, positive, winning attitude towards his teammates in over NINE months.

Or maybe it doesn’t matter at all. Maybe this is just the holding pattern Magic fans are stuck in until the inevitable Dwight Howard departure.  But until that door is completely closed, performances against championship level squads have the opportunity to sway.  A silly preseason victory won’t make Dwight stay, but a win over LeBron and Co. does keep that all-important voice in his head reminding him that the grass is not always greener.

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