Dwight Howard Might Have to Wear an Eye Patch for Halloween
Tim Povtak of NBA FanHouse notes how Dwight Howard jokingly suggested he may start wearing a facemask or goggles after getting poked in the eye in last night's game against the Indiana Pacers.
Magic center Dwight Howard may have decided Wednesday night on what costume he will wear Halloween night. He might be the biggest pirate ever to go trick-or-treating. Howard got poked in the right eye by Solomon Jones late in Wednesday night's victory over the Indiana Pacers, giving the Magic a brief scare until his vision cleared.
Lakers, Celtics, Cavaliers lead strong NBA title race
Chris Ballard of Sports Illustrated notes how the title race in the NBA this season may be one of the most entertaining one in recent years.
The Magic has tried to keep up not only by adding Carter but also by bringing in free agent Brandon Bass from the Mavericks so that Orlando will at last have a traditional power forward. But have those moves made the team less dangerous? Three-point sniper Rashard Lewis, who is suspended for this season's first 10 games because he failed a drug test for a performance-enhancing substance, will now spend fewer minutes creating havoc at the four spot, and Hedo Turkoglu, the 6' 10" playmaking small forward who was crucial to Orlando's upset of Cleveland in the conference finals, has moved on to Toronto as a free agent. The Magic enjoyed some mismatches with its offbeat lineup last season, but as G.M. Otis Smith notes, that unusual style didn't bring Orlando a championship. "You can't expect fans to come pay to see us if we're going to be passive," says Smith, who must fill his team's new downtown arena, which opens in 2010-11. "We're going to be aggressive."
Defense should lead Celtics over Lakers for NBA title
Ian Thomsen of Sports Illustrated chimes in, as well, on how the Orlando Magic will fare.
Unless they beat out Cleveland for the No. 1 seed, the Magic will find themselves matched up against Boston in the second round. At that stage last year, they barely beat a Celtics team that didn't have Garnett. As much as the Magic have improved their talent with the return of Jameer Nelson and the acquisitions of Vince Carter and Brandon Bass, they still have to prove that they're better than the Garnett-led Celtics, who have also bettered themselves.
Acting just comes natural to me!!!
Dwight Howard posts on his official blog, today, and talks about being comfortable around other actors.
Of course, my focus is on basketball and leading the Magic to a championship. That’s what consumes me every day and it’s my first thought when I wake up in the morning.
But acting is something that I truly enjoy and I want to get better at it. I was in a lot of plays and short stories when I was in high school, so it’s something that I’ve always done.
Orlando Magic roster analysis 2009-2010 NBA preview
UPDATE: Here's an excerpt of an opposing team's scouting report on the Magic - I suggest reading this write-up because it is very thorough, even if you agree or disagree with the observations and opinions of another person.
There is going to be a lot of pressure on Van Gundy to pull all of these new pieces together while doing at least as well as last year's team that went to the Finals. He was in the same position with Miami where he had a team built to win a championship, and obviously the players and/or Pat Riley did not think he was the guy to get them there. I thought a lot of that was unfair, and really a lot of what undermined Van Gundy in Miami was that Riley was sitting there waiting in the wings. The harsh reality is that the questions about Van Gundy have not gone away despite the success he's had in Orlando, and they won't go away until he wins a championship. He is undoubtedly one of the best and most intelligent coaches in the NBA. Watching his team, you can see they've got a plan and they execute it. They're in the spots they're supposed to be and it's rare they have a clunker game or they play in an undisciplined way. In the end-of-game situations, he always seems to do a terrific job with getting the shot they need.
Orlando Magic ‘09-10 NBA season preview
UPDATE 2: Austin Burton of Dime Magazine previews Orlando.
Marcin Gortat continues his strong preseason
UPDATE 3: Zach McCann of Orlando Magic Daily talks about Marcin's Gortat strong game against the Indiana Pacers, yesterday.