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Orlando Magic News for January 15th: Dwight Howard on the State of Big Men in the NBA; Ryan Anderson Earns Praise

  • Dwight Howard Would Take Carmelo over LeBron or Kobe
    Dwight Howard speaks.

    On the lack of big men in the NBA:

    "I don’t know.  I don’t know why I’m considered a big man.  I’m only 6-9 (laughing).  No, I’m just kidding.  I don’t know.  I think the game is just a different game than it was back in the day.  Not a lot of guys that play through the post.  There are a couple of guys, but it’s just tough when you’ve got so many guards, you’ve got so many big forwards who can post up, who can shoot threes and who can handle the ball.  I guess being a center is a lost art.  Nobody wants to be a center and just say I play the five position.  A lot of guys would rather play the small forward or the power forward.  Somebody says Center, they’re just like ugh."
  • The Dunk Contest Has Left the Building
    Bethlehem Shoals of NBA FanHouse expresses his disappointment on the fact that this year's Slam Dunk Contest may not be good.

    With LeBron tentatively committing, Josh Smith talking about returning, and Howard potentially in the mix, 2010 would've been a dunk contest like the olden days. Two huge names, one guy who has proved his legitimacy this season, all of them young enough to qualify but still major figures in today's NBA ... you can't overstate how rad an event this would have been. That would be the dunk contest coming back. Instead, we'll be left trying to figure out what the point is, and why certain cult favorites wouldn't participate, or weren't invited. What we won't be doing, though, is saying "it's back." Because for once, it almost was really, truly, back. And it got just close enough that we'll know what we're missing.
  • NBA Sophomore Rankings: Big men at head of class
    David Thorpe of ESPN Insider ranks the top 20 sophomores in the NBA.

    9. Ryan Anderson, Magic
    Struggling since Rashard Lewis returned to the lineup, Anderson averaged only 6.8 ppg on 33.3 percent shooting from 3 in December. So, he was benched for two games last week.

    The Magic promptly lost at home to Toronto then again at Washington, so Van Gundy put Anderson back into the lineup. He responded by scoring 26 points in the next two games combined, making 4 of his 8 3-point attempts. And the Magic won both games. That is how you earn back rotation minutes.
  • Rashard Lewis Wants More Shots
    Eric Freeman of The Baseline offers his opinion on Rashard Lewis' demands, which came after the Orlando Magic lost to the Denver Nuggets two nights ago.

    It's no surprise Lewis would want more shots -- he's a two-time All-Star and was a huge part of the run to the Finals last season. But Vince Carter is very different from Hedo Turkoglu and Courtney Lee, the men he replaced, and Lewis was bound to see fewer shots this year.

    These comments almost make it seem as if Lewis (and perhaps the Magic as a whole) expected Vince to be able to come in, play Hedo's previous role as scorer and facilitator, and give the Magic a boost through sheer force of talent. But he's not that kind of player, and the entire team should have been more prepared for these kinds of growing pains.