Orlando Magic News for March 19th: Orlando Roster Gets Critiqued, Dwight Howard Receives Praise, and More

  • Yesterday, John Hollinger of ESPN.com provided his thoughts on which teams will benefit from playing their reserves less minutes come playoff time. Second on the list under the ‘Stronger’ category is the Orlando Magic. Hollinger’s thoughts are below.

    2. Orlando: The Magic's starting five can hang with anybody -- in terms of season point differential, Orlando's starters are ahead of L.A.'s and in a statistical dead heat with Boston's.

    That's no big surprise considering the frontcourt trio of Dwight Howard, Rashard Lewis, and Hedo Turkoglu, and the paucity of quality backups behind them. The starting five and sixth man Mickael Pietrus all have strong plus/minus marks, but the likes of Anthony Johnson, Marcin Gortat, Tony Battie, and J.J. Redick do not.

    I would agree that the Magic will benefit from tightening up its rotation once the playoffs occur, but that doesn’t change the fact Orlando has an efficient and underrated bench.
  • Former Magic player Keith Bogans has shedded any hard feelings against Orlando for being traded last month. Brian Schmitz has the scoop.
  • In case you missed Dwight’s monster block in the Magic’s victory over the Bucks last night, check it out.


  • Likewise, I was able to attend the Orlando/Milwaukee game. If you’d like to read up on my experience at the Bradley Center, you can click here for the story. I provide a quick summary of my pre-game conversation with Orlando Magic play-by-play announcer (and 3QC reader) David Steele.
  • UPDATE: Take a snapshot of the Basketball-Reference team page for the Orlando. For the first time this season, the Magic are ranked FIRST in defensive efficiency. Doubt that ranking will last long so savor the moment.

Ed. note: the following bullets are from me. - BQR

  • Two different endorsements for Dwight Howard's winning the Defensive Player of the Year Award:

    • Kelly Dwyer:

      This guy could be averaging nine rebounds and one block, and if his non-block/rebound exploits kept up, he'd still deserve the award. He's Shane Battier, expect [sic] he can touch the top of the box on a 12-foot rim.

      So, so unbelievable. He's leading on the ballots for the voters that don't really watch enough of the NBA, but get to vote anyway (impressing them by leading the league in rebounds and blocks), and he's likely leading the ballots for those of us who don't even know how many rejections he ended up with until pulling up the box score hours later. Those of us that still came away gobsmacked at all the shots he changed, and offensive sets that he tore to pieces, without even knowing that he pulled in 15 boards.

    • John Hollinger:

      One more quick note from Tuesday night's Orlando-Cleveland game -- Dwight Howard had 15 boards and six blocks, which is his 10th game with at least 15 boards and five blocks this year.

      The rest of the league has four.

  • Ryan Schwan of Hornets247 attempts to determine who the NBA's greatest penetrators are. He considered how frequently the player is assisted on his baskets, then weighed that against field goal percentage. Jameer Nelson ranks behind only Chris Paul and Steve Nash in this respect. Anthony Johnson is 30th, Hedo Turkoglu is 40th, and Rafer Alston, at the 43rd spot, is dead-last among players whose data Schwan examined.

  • YouGotDunkedOn.com has video of Dwight Howard's vicious alley-oop finish over Dan Gadzuric and Joe Alexander last night. This is one of Dwight's best dunks of the year, and off a rare on-target lob from Hedo Turkoglu to boot. Is it just me, or has the birthday boy thrown errant lobs more often than not this year?

  • Speaking of birthdays, today marks the two-year anniversary of my starting the original 3QC. It's been a wild two years, and I'd like to thank everyone--every loyal reader, every family member, every teacher, everyone--for helping to make running this site such an enjoyable experience. Profuse thank-yous all around.

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