NBA Summer Forecast: Eastern Conference champions - ESPN
16 of ESPN's 93--count 'em!--panelists picked the Orlando Magic to win the Eastern Conference this season. J.A. Adande is among those 16, and explains his decision in part by saying, "[t]hey tried playing the 'nobody respects us' card for the past two seasons and maybe it will finally take effect now."
Marc Stein is among the dissenters, picking the Miami Heat instead. "My days on Orlando's bandwagon are a memory," he says, due to their poor playoff performance last year, their unimpressive additions this summer, and the fact that Dwight Howard did not play for Team USA in the FIBA World Championships.
J.J. Redick Never Thought He’d Last In Orlando | Dime Magazine (dimemag.com)
Jack Jensen of Dime Magazine chats with Magic shooting guard J.J. Redick and tries to catch him saying he wants to start. But Redick, by his own admission, gives the "politically correct" answer. Here it is, in part:
You know, I just want to be a part of a great organization and a winning team, and I have it with the Magic. Whether Vince [Carter] sticks around for two more years or one more year or four more years, I’m not going to complain. I’m happy with my situation.
The whole interview is well worth your time.
Video Highlights: Marcin Gortat | Magic Basketball
Eddy cut together this highlight reel of Magic center Marcin Gortat's performance as he tries to lead his native Poland during EuroBasket 2011 qualifying. Yes, Gortat is spending another summer with the Polish national team, which could indeed affect his performance for the Magic in the season ahead. Last year, he said fatigue affected him in the early stages of the season.