The Orlando Magic will try to pick up their second consecutive win against opponents boasting double-digit win streaks this afternoon when they host the Boston Celtics, who've won 14 straight games, at Amway Center. On some level, Orlando must feel like it has something to prove. Last Christmas, the Celtics held the Magic to 8 points in the second quarter in a 9-point win. More importantly, Boston rudely took the first two games from the host Magic in the Eastern Conference Finals in May. Boston's additions of Shaquille and Jermaine O'Neal have them as ready to battle Dwight Howard as ever, while questions about the Magic's ability to match up with the Celtics, even after their trades last week, linger.
We'll get a better idea of what to expect later this season after watching this game, though I do believe the Magic team we see today will look sharper and more cohesive in a few months. That's not to excuse Orlando if it loses, though; it beat the San Antonio Spurs, on a 10-game streak, two nights ago with just two practices under its belt.
Brandon Bass will make his seventh start of the season this afternoon for the Magic. The veteran power forward did not play at all against the Celtics last regular season.
|2010/2011 NBA Season|
|23-4 (10-3 road) |
|17-12 (10-5 home) |
|December 25th, 2010|
|Nate Robinson||PG||Jameer Nelson|
|Ray Allen||SG||Jason Richardson|
|Paul Pierce||SF||Hedo Turkoglu|
|Kevin Garnett||PF||Brandon Bass|
|Shaquille O'Neal||C||Dwight Howard|
|2010/11 Advanced Stats|
|91.0 (T-20th)||Pace||91.4 (19th)|
|109.4 (10th)||ORtg||106.1 (16th)|
|99.3 (1st)||DRtg||102.2 (6th)|