The Super Duper Amazing Unbelievably Magical Collapse featuring Dwight Howard Video
First half: Orlando leads 58-37 at the half. The 21 point lead actually had been brought down by Boston from the 27 point lead that the Magic held with 3:11 left in the half. They controlled the entire first half in every aspect of the game.
Flash forward to the end of the 3rd quarter. The Magic were hanging tight to their big lead and it still sat as high as 18 with 2:21 to play. The Celtics closed the 3rd on a 12-3 run to draw within 11. At this point, all hell broke loose and the Magic would never recover.
The 4th quarter stat line for the Magic was something straight out of a middle school gymnasium.
- 2-17 from the field. 1 of those 2 was a garbage time three pointer by Hedo Turkoglu with 39 seconds left and the Magic trailing by 7.
- 1-7 from the three point line. See above.
- 3-8 from the free throw line.
- 8, EIGHT, total points for the quarter.
Composure. An ounce of composure would have been helpful. As soon as the Celtics stepped up their physical play in the second half, the Magic had no answer.
Stan Van Gundy, “I think some things were deflating and we didn’t handle those well. We had a loss of composure and it’s a very difficult loss to take. We’ve got 48 games left to go and we need to get a lot better.We’re embarrassed as much tonight as we were the other night, but that’s not productive. There was a lot of frustration. We’ve got to get to where we can just play the game.”
A lot of that comes from your superstar team leader being able to round up his team and carry them on his back. Dwight Howard led the team with 16 points and 16 rebounds, but the stats are misleading. He never was in control and he never looked like it was HIS game. When his team was unraveling, he was doing the same.
We are quick to always give Dwight the pat on the back as the savior of the team, but he bears a large responsibility for this loss and wasn’t quite quick to accept any blame.
Two quotes from Dwight -“We gotta change what we do. Guys got to know their roles and know what they gotta do, and they gotta do it. That’s just the bottom line.”
And again, “Guys have to be on the same page and guys have to know their roles and do what they have to do. We can’t step out of what this team needs each and every player to do.”
Dwight would reiterate this answer for a third time and for the first time, included himself in that criticism. You can watch the full video below.
With two of the worst losses in Magic history coming just days apart, the team is showing signs that maybe panic is on the horizon.