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Orlando Magic Embarrassed in New York

2013 December 7
by Brian Serra
Story of the night for Big Baby and Arron Afflalo in New York.

Story of the night for Big Baby and Arron Afflalo in New York.

The Orlando Magic went into Madison Square Garden with organizational motivation to put a whooping to the struggling New York Knicks. The players lost the message at some point late in the first quarter. After a Moe Harkless layup put the Magic up 27-20 with 1:31 left in the 1st, New York would go on to outscore Orlando by 45 points for the remainder of the game for the 121-83 win.

The Magic were without starting center Nik Vucevic (ankle) but his presence would have done little to support the overall flat defensive effort put forth. Jameer Nelson returned to the starting lineup for the Magic after missing 3.5 games and seemed to give the team a nice push, scoring eight first quarter point – but like the rest of the team, was ineffective through the rest of the game. Nelson finished with 13 points and nine assists. 

Offensively, the Magic were stymied as soon as the Knicks ratcheted up their defensive effort. They switched nearly every pick and roll and perimeter screen, preventing the Magic from getting anything going towards the basket. When Orlando got to the basket, they just couldn’t convert (see below shot chart), shooting just 11-26 around the rim.

The Magic were led in scoring by Arron Afflalo’s 20 points, while Victor Oladipo scored 17 points and grabbed 9 rebounds. Outside of those two and Jameer’s 13 points, no other Magic player scored in double figures.

Defensively, red-hot outside shooting from the Knicks prevented any semblance of a Magic comeback – as J.R. Smith and Tim Hardaway Jr. combined to make 10 three’s and the Knicks made 17-34 total. The Knicks had seven players score in double figures, led by Carmelo Anthony’s 20 points. Andrea Bargnani and J.R. Smith had 17 each.

Notes, news, randomz and funziez:

  • Andrew Nicholson started his first game of the year. With Vucevic out, Baby manned the middle with Nicholson at the 4. He scored eight points on the night on 4-6 shooting, but three early fouls prevented him from making any first half impact. Nicholson remains one of Orlando’s most efficient scorers and you hope that the coaching staff can start to work him into the flow of the offense at a higher rate.
  • Big Baby continues to struggle over the last few games, shooting just 1-7 in tonight’s game – including two missed free throws. He doesn’t seem to lack the quickness on his feet that he had before his injury, that made him slippery around the rim and got him easy baskets. It’s unclear to me if it’s an issue of health or just a lack of confidence in his body.
  • Iman Shumpert continues to leave me polarized on his ceiling, depending on the possession. Sometimes he looks completely lost, other teams you see that explosion return. He had a strong drive and nasty throwdown in the 3rd quarter to remind everyone what he has the potential to do. He finished with 10 points.
  • Despite Jameer returning to the starting lineup, he played off the ball most of the game. Oladipo handled the majority of the PG duties – though the team was using Jameer to run high pick and rolls as the shot clock wound down and Oladipo had dribbled around nowhere for 10-15 seconds. #process
  • Funziez: The Magic would have lost by 40 if not for a ferocious and heroic defensive effort by the bottom of the Magic bench in the last 46 seconds. Get that weak shit out of here Cole Aldrich and Toure’ Murray.
  • Make this game go away.
Orlando Magic shotchart against the New York Knicks - 12/6/2013

Orlando Magic shotchart against the New York Knicks – 12/6/2013

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