A perfect storm conspired against the Magic on Monday night.
For starters, Orlando had to travel across three time zones to begin a four-game road trip without their starting center and leading scorer. They also had to play against perhaps the greatest basketball team ever assembled, that was coming off an unexpected defeat the day before, and that had the opportunity to redeem themselves by setting an NBA record with a 45th consecutive home victory.
Despite all of those factors conspiring against them, Orlando nearly pulled of a miraculous comeback. On this night however, the Magic simply could not stand in the way of history and fell by a final score of 119-113.
The Erie BayHawks – NBADL affiliate of your Orlando Magic – have now lost 11 consecutive games after falling 98-94 to the Westchester Knicks on Saturday night. Erie is now officially eliminated from playoff contention.
Magic fans will be happy to know though that Dewayne Dedmon had a pretty great game as he tallied 17 points, 22 rebounds, and 3 blocks in 34 minutes of work. He shot 7-of-13 from the floor, including drilling a few jump shots that are impressive by Dedmon standards. He also grabbed 9 offensive rebounds, which was more than the entire Westchester squad could snag.
As reported by Josh Robbins of the Orlando Sentinel, this will be the 26-year-old’s only contest in a BayHawks jersey. The 7-foot center will be re-joining the Magic in California as Orlando takes on the dominant Golden State Warriors on Monday.
Adam Papageorgiou is Owner/Editor of MBO.
Orlando Magic guard Victor Oladipo on Saturday was named the 2015-2016 Rich & Helen DeVos Community Enrichment Award recipient at the 26th Annual Orlando Magic Youth Foundation (OMYF) Black Tie & Tennies Gala that was held at the Amway Center. The other finalist for the award was point guard Elfrid Payton.
Each year at the Gala, the OMYF honors a player who has dedicated his efforts off the court for the purpose of enhancing other lives. A panel selects the player. Oladipo will be granted $50,000 from the Richard and Helen DeVos Foundation to donate to the charity of his choice. It’s the second time Oladipo has won the award.
Past winners include Nick Anderson (1995-1996), Anfernee Hardaway (1996-1997), Darrell Armstrong (1997-1998, 1999-2000), Grant Hill (2000-2001), Monty Williams (2001-2002), Tracy McGrady (2002-2003), Pat Garrity (2003-2004), Bo Outlaw (1998-1999, 2005-2006, 2006-2007), Dwight Howard (’04-’05, ’07-’08, ’08-’09, ’09-’10, ’10-’11, ’11-’12), J.J. Redick (’11-’12), Jameer Nelson (’12-’13), Tobias Harris (’13-1’4; ’14-’15, co-winner with Oladipo) and Victor Oladipo (’14-15, co-winner with Harris; 2015-16).
The Orlando Magic on Saturday announced that they have assigned Dewayne Dedmon to the Erie BayHawks, the team’s NBADL affiliate. It’s a bit of a surprise move considering the 26-year-old hasn’t made a D-League appearance since the 7-foot center was a member of the Santa Cruz Warriors in the 2013-2014 season.
Josh Robbins of the Orlando Sentinel reports that Dedmon will only play 1 contest for Erie – a home game in Pennsylvania tonight (Saturday) against the Westchester Knicks – before rejoining the Magic for the start of their 4-game Western Conference road trip that begins Monday against the Golden State Warriors.
Dedmon will play 1 game with the BayHawks — tonight vs Westchester — then rejoin the Magic in San Francisco tomorrow.
— Josh Robbins (@JoshuaBRobbins) March 5, 2016
So in exchange for a night of extended playing time, Dewayne will miss the franchise’s annual Black Tie & Tennies Gala. It’s an opportunity for Dedmon to put up numbers considering he’ll be a free agent come this summer.
In 3 seasons with Orlando, Dedmon has played in 113 games including 25 starts. Other than raising his free throw percentage from 53.1 FT% last year to 74.4 FT% in the ’15-’16 campaign, Dewayne’s season has been an overall disappointment as Nikola Vucevic and Jason Smith have dominated the minutes at the center spot.
Scott Skiles has played Dedmon in 37 games (4 starts) this season as he’s averaged 3.4 ppg and 3.1 rpg on 51.6 FG% at around 10 minutes per contest. All of those numbers are decreases from when James Borrego and Jacque Vaughn were coaching this squad.
The BayHawks own by far the worst record in the D-League, at 11-27. Coach Bill Peterson’s squad is currently on a 10-game losing streak.
Adam Papageorgiou is Owner/Editor of MBO.
The Orlando Magic lost to a Phoenix Suns squad that had not won a road game since December 7th. Almost 3 entire months. One Magic guy shouldn’t take the blame for this as Nikola Vucevic tried to do. He wasn’t the only person defending Alex Len. I commend Vooch for stepping in as one of the team’s leaders, but the entire squad should be ashamed at that awful showing.
This probably will go down as the worst Orlando Magic defeat of the 2015-2016 season. There have been some notably awful losses, but this one may have unofficially ended any playoff hopes. In a game they needed to win prior to their upcoming 4-game Western Conference road trip, the Magic laid an egg. Orlando fell to a physically and mentally battered Phoenix Suns squad, 102-84 on Friday evening.
Phoenix had way more energy. Look at the fouls and free throws. Magic committed 31 personal fouls while the Suns only committed 16 fouls. Suns were 27-of-39 on free throws while the Magic were just 7-of-14 from the charity stripe. Orlando shot a horrendous 34.7 FG% (35-of-101). Alex Len had a career-high 31 points and 15 rebounds for Phoenix. Devin Booker and Ronnie Price each contributed 14 points.
Personal statistics don’t matter, but Orlando got 19 points and 11 assists from Elfrid Payton. Nikola Vucevic had a rare bad shooting night, posting 15 points and 12 rebounds on 7-of-19 FGs. Mario Hezonja and Evan Fournier each added 12 points. Orlando got little bench help. 2-of-14 shooting from Ersan Ilyasova. Devyn Marble and Brandon Jennings were each 0-of-6 on FGs.
Below is the game recap.
The Orlando Magic and the Chicago Bulls are near carbon copies of each other, both teams are fighting for their playoff lives in the tightly bunched Eastern Conference race, they both have struggled keeping their opponents from putting the ball in the hole of late, and both faced off against each other in Orlando one night after suffering an embarrassing defeat.
However, one team separated itself from the other. The Magic played like a team on the upswing, desperate to reach the postseason for the first time as a group. Meanwhile, the Bulls played like a team on the second night of a back-to-back set, without their full complement of players, and effectively falling apart at the seams. Orlando rolled past the Bulls 102-89 and secured a tie-breaker advantage over Chicago for playoff seeding purposes in the process.
The calendar has flipped to March and the Magic are running out of both days and games to turn their season around in order to make an honest attempt at gaining their first postseason berth in four years. They took a step back on Tuesday night as they fell to the Mavericks 121-108 in Dallas. Ersan Ilyasova was the game’s leading scorer with 22 points and 10 rebounds and Nikola Vucevic added 18 points in a losing effort. Future Hall-of-Famer Dirk Nowitzki contributed 19 points, and Wes Matthews poured in 21 points to pace the Mavericks in victory.
The Orlando Magic ended February with a 5-7 record. It’s way better than that 2-12 January. Even though they never trailed against Philadelphia, inconsistent defense continues to haunt their hopes of really digging into this Eastern Conference playoff chase.
Victor Oladipo singing is always a good sign when you enter the locker room. Justin Bieber is still popular on his playlist. Everyone was thrilled to see Mario Hezonja do well in his first NBA start. The Croatian is about as fun as any other Magic player right now, both on and off the court.
The Orlando Magic conclude February with 26 victories on this ’15-’16 campaign after a 130-116 win over the Philadelphia 76ers on Sunday night. That exceeds their 25-win total from last season. Orlando has a very intriguing final 6 weeks ahead as they claw to stay in the playoff hunt. The 130 points is the most Orlando has scored in a victory or in a non-overtime game since dropping 135 in a home win over Indiana on January 27, 2009.
It almost turned into a disastrous loss. Orlando was up by as many as 29 points in the third period. Philadelphia chipped away at that Magic lead and got it to within single digits. Philly never led. Some clutch play late by Elfrid Payton though, and Orlando secured the win.
Orlando shot 57.0 FG% but allowed Philly to stay in it as they hoisted up 53.2 FG%. Before fouling out, Nikola Vucevic had 28 points and 6 rebounds on 13-of-18 shooting. Victor Oladipo also contributed 28 points. Aaron Gordon notched a career-high 22 points to go with his 7 rebounds. Payton had 11 points and 10 assists. Jahlil Okafor led the Sixers with 26 points.
Below is the game recap.