Biyombo-Ibaka Frontcourt on Display in Loss to Hawks

The Orlando Magic lost to an Atlanta Hawks squad that rested a lot of players on Sunday, falling 105-98 at Amway Center. With Nikola Vucevic receiving the night off, Magic coach Frank Vogel pounced on the opportunity to see what a starting lineup that included both Bismack Biyombo and Serge Ibaka together on the court would look like for long stretches of a contest.

Statistically, the results were intriguing. Serge Ibaka had a game-high 25 points to go with 6 rebounds and 2 blocks on 9-of-15 shooting (1-of-3 on 3s) and 6-of-6 at the free throw line in 36 minutes of work. That’s the same amount of time Bismack Biyombo played as Biz had a game-high 19 rebounds and 5 blocks to go with 7 points, 1 assists, and 1 steal. That bad for Biz was the 2-of-7 shooting, but also the concerning 3-of-10 free throw shooting.

The Magic lost this contest because they gave up too many Hawks 3-pointers (10-of-27) and Orlando shooting just 12-of-24 at the free throw line. Hawks were held to 40.9 FG% Orlando shot 44.2 FG% and 10-of-25 on 3s.

At times, Atlanta figured out ways to exploit Biyombo by making sure he had to defend a Hawks big that was capable of hitting triples. After Orlando had the blocks advantage for the majority of the night, Atlanta got some key swats in the fourth period and won that statistic 11-10. When Orlando desperately needed any time of bucket, not having Vucevic available was a gaping absence.

Paul Millsap tallied 19 points, 9 rebounds, and 7 assists in just 19 minutes of action. Tim Hardaway Jr. also notched 19 points. Thabo Sefolosha added 15 points, and rookie Taurean Prince contributed thirteen. The Magic 22 points, 5 rebounds, and 4 assists from Evan Fournier. Elfrid Payton added 14 points, 5 assists, and 5 rebounds, but also 5 turnovers. D.J. Augustin poured in 12 points off the bench.