Tonight's Game: Orlando Magic at Boston Celtics

Loading Scores
2009 NBA Eastern Conference Semifinals
Orlando Magic main logo
vs.
Boston Celtics main logo
Series tied, 2-2
May 12th, 2009
TD Banknorth Garden
8:00 PM
TNT
Probable Starters
Rafer Alston PG Rajon Rondo
J.J. Redick SG Ray Allen
Hedo Turkoglu SF Paul Pierce
Rashard Lewis PF Glen Davis
Dwight Howard C Kendrick Perkins
Game Officials
Monty McCutchen
Mike Callahan
Bill Spooner
Series Central

Another day, another "biggest game in modern franchise history" for the Orlando Magic. A victory against the Boston Celtics tonight puts Orlando in great position to advance to the Eastern Conference Finals for the third time in franchise history. A loss makes that task all the more daunting. High stakes, indeed.

The keys to victory are the same as they've always been. Additionally, it is absolutely critical, as Michael White notes, that Rafer Alston stops shooting three-pointers. Everyone needs to make a concerted effort to drive the ball to the basket. Boston is rather infamously shorthanded this postseason, and could be even more so tonight, as forward/center Brian Scalabrine missed this morning's practice due to illness. Get in the bonus, earn potentially free points with the clock stopped, force the Celtics to play Mikki Moore. It really is that simple.

Dwight Howard needs to be more engaged offensively, and the team's reluctance to use him in pick-and-roll sets in this series is baffling. He tore apart the Celtics with 24 points and 21 rebounds in his team's victory over Boston on March 25th despite hardly having any plays called for him. He benefitted from dribble penetration by Rafer Alston and Hedo Turkoglu, who either dumped the ball to him after drawing his defender away or intentionally missed a shot off the glass so Howard could get the offensive board and clean it up. I hate to sound like a broken record, but the only way Howard is going to score efficiently against defensive stalwart Kendrick Perkins is if he's in constant motion.

Meanwhile, Rashard Lewis must assert himself tonight. Glen Davis cannot defend Lewis on the perimeter or off the dribble, so the Magic's highest-paid player needs to take it upon himself to score fairly easy buckets. And when Davis is out of the game, Lewis will tangle with Scalabrine (if healthy) or Moore, neither of whom stands a chance of stopping him on the left block. This series really should be his time to shine. He needs to seize the spotlight tonight.

For more on the game, which tips at 8 PM on TNT, check out Chris Sheridan's preview at ESPN.com.

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Orlando Pinstriped Post

You must be a member of Orlando Pinstriped Post to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Orlando Pinstriped Post. You should read them.

Join Orlando Pinstriped Post

You must be a member of Orlando Pinstriped Post to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Orlando Pinstriped Post. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9347_tracker