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No Dwight, No Problem – Magic Pummel Pistons

2012 April 9
by Brian Serra

It was an offensive explosion for the Magic tonight as they cruised by the Detroit Pistons 119-89. Dwight Howard sat out the game with back spasms, but that didn’t stop the Magic from putting up a season high 119 points.

And Stan was right. The energy, the hustle, the flow… it was all at an elite level for the entire game. Not one quarter, not two quarters, but the whole game.

Jason Richardson led the balanced team in scoring with 22 points on 6-7 from 3-point land and J.J. Redick scored 20 on 4-7 from deep. Collectively, the team shot the ball 15-28 from 3-point distance. Hard to lose when you shoot the ball like that.

Dwight Howard, still recovering from back spasms that began last week, sat out for the 3rd time since April 1st. Big Baby Davis started in his place and once again continued his stellar play with a 16 point, 16 rebound performance. Stan Van Gundy was complimentary of Davis after the game and his hope is to tighten up the minute rotation moving forward with Dwight at 36-38 minutes per game and Glen and Ryan Anderson each around 28-30 mpg.

Stan enthusiastically exclaimed Saturday night’s win over the 76ers as the best of the season. When asked tonight how this win compared to that game, he spoke positively about the team and it’s growth:

“We played better tonight from an offensive stand point. Our competitive level was very very high. Let’s hope we make this a habit because that’s two games in a row where we have just played harder for longer than we have the rest of the year.” – Stan Van Gundy

The losing streak is now distantly fading in the rear view mirror as this team is pressing forward, as a united bunch, towards the playoffs.

News, notes, tidbits, etc:

  • Chris Duhon was suspended for tonight’s game in what was described as “conduct detrimental to the team”. Ish Smith stepped up in his quest to CARPE DUHON with xxx points and x assists. It was more than just stats for Ish, as he showed he has the ability to actually create for his teammates. A skill that Duhon lacks. #ThatIshCray
  • The team’s 64 1st half points were the most the team has scored in the 1st half all year. And also of note, a LOT of points.
  • Coming into the game tonight, out of the teams that Orlando has played 2 or more times this season, only Boston, Chicago and Atlanta had allowed fewer points per game to the Magic than Detroit has. Boston (69.5), Chicago (80.3), Atlanta (82.5) and then Detroit (86.5). By comparison, Orlando averages 93.9 points per game, while Detroit typically allows 95.5 points per game.
  • I’m choosing to ignore that the Pistons played last night against the Miami Heat…
  • Rookie Justin Harper scored his first career points with 5:54 remaining in the 4th quarter when he knocked down a 20′ jumper from the left block. He finished with 4 points in 6 minutes. Congrats, Justin!

The team travels to face the Washington Wizards at 7pm EST on Tuesday night. Dwight Howard is currently listed as doubtful to play.

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