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Orlando Magic News for April 8th: a Blueprint for Beating the Cavaliers, a Balanced Team, and More

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  • Ron Artest among leaders in art of playing NBA perimeter defense - Paul Forrester

    An NBA scout names one way the Orlando Magic could exploit the Cleveland Cavaliers' defense if the two teams meet in the playoffs.

    "Defensively, Shaq's return could force them into some tough decisions since neither he nor Zydrunas Ilgauskas gets out on pick-and-rolls. So the first thing any opponent is going to do is put those guys in pick-and-rolls away from the basket. While [Anderson] Varejao and [J.J.] Hickson can try to pick up that guy who sets the screen and is rolling to the basket, what happens if a team puts a pick-and-pop guy there? If Orlando sits Dwight Howard for a time and the screener is Rashard Lewis, are you going to put Z and Shaq on the bench? Then you're going to have [Antawn] Jamison out there and he's not a good defender."

  • NBA.com: Old adage proves true: Defense does win in postseason

    John Schuhmann of NBA.com posts this fact that bodes well for the Magic's championship hopes.

    Of the last 10 NBA champions, eight have ranked in the top 10 both offensively and defensively in the regular season. Only three teams meet that criteria this year: Cleveland (second offensively and seventh defensively), Orlando (fourth and first), and San Antonio (ninth and ninth).
  • Mike Miller might also want to play for the Magic - ProBasketballTalk

    John Krolik of ProBasketballTalk offers his thoughts on Wizards swingman Mike Miller potentially signing with the Magic this offseason. "it's nice to think about such a talented shooter playing for a team that has embraced the three-pointer the way the Magic have, he says.

  • NBA Awards: LeBron, Evans, McMillan and More - Sean Deveney

    Sean Deveney of The Basline picks Josh Smith, and not Dwight Howard, to win the Defensive Player of the Year award. He concedes that Howard will "likely" win, but chose Smith because "his athleticism allows him to get out and defend the perimeter, and is one of the chief reasons the Hawks are able to use their switch-everything approach to pick-and-rolls."