Each week, we will gather all of the NBA Power Rankings from various outlets to see how the Magic fared.
Steve Clifford is flashing four fingers in the photo above, and for our purposes, it represents the Magic winning four of five games. That hasn’t happened very often in these parts over the last six years, and it helped the Magic climb a few spots in most NBA Power Rankings around the web.
The Magic’s standing in the rankings will be challenged over the next few weeks as they host the Sixers for Jimmy Butler’s debut, the Lakers for LeBron’s first game in Orlando as a member of Los Angeles, and the Raptors for a match-up with the owners of the league’s best record. The Magic will then embark on a five-game West Coast road trip.
Click on each publication for the full ranking...
ESPN - Magic jump from 26 to 23
The Magic ended their four-game losing streak last week with an upset against the Spurs and have taken advantage of an ease in the schedule with wins in three of their past four games against teams with losing records. The Magic have been led by Nikola Vucevic and Aaron Gordon, who have combined for 10 games with at least 20 points and eight rebounds. -- Andre Snellings
CBS Sports - Magic jump from 27 to 23
Nikola Vucevic isn’t this team’s future, but he’s been a surprising bright spot for this team’s surprising present. Vucevic is averaging 17.8 rebounds and 10.7 rebounds and posting a 24.6 player efficiency rating -- all team highs. -- Reid Forgrave
NBA.com - Magic jump from 22 to 21
The Magic have won four of their last five games, with Evan Fournier (the game-winner on Monday) and Aaron Gordon (the dunk on Wednesday) providing the highlights. They’ve seemingly risen above the dregs of the Eastern Conference with wins over the Cavs, Wizards and Knicks, but will face two of those teams again in the next seven days. Gordon is day-to-day with an ankle injury and both of those games (Monday in Washington, Sunday against New York) being the second of a back-to-back. Wes Iwundu has shot just 7-for-22 in his five games as a starter (in place of the injured Jonathan Isaac), but the Magic have allowed just 91 points per 100 possessions in his 91 minutes. -- John Schuhmann
SI.com - Magic remain at 24
Taking care of business against the Cavaliers, Wizards and Knicks isn’t going to turn around Orlando’s season, but those wins could keep the Magic excited for their season.
The franchise has topped 30 wins just once since Dwight Howard left, and those 35 wins in 2015–16 look even less impressive when you realize that’s fewer than the team won in the 66-game lockout season (37), which was Howard’s last ride with the squad.
The commitment to going big has paid off to some extent as the Magic have at least found decent guys to do damage on the block. However, in today’s NBA, they’ll need something more than a respectable four-man rotation in the frontcourt. -- Khadrice Rollins
NBC Sports - Magic at 23
We like the big man tag-team of Vucevic-Bamba. We like Aaron Gordon. As long as that’s all there is, good teams will keep eating their lunch. -- Monte Poole
UPROXX - Magic fall from 22 to 23
There isn’t much to suggest that Orlando’s semi-positive start is real, with bottom-10 metrics in most areas. Still, the Magic were able to bank some victories and they should be commended for that. -- Brad Rowland
Rotoworld - Magic remain at 25
After dropping six of their first eight games, coach Steve Clifford and his troops have won four of five. Underrated big man Nikola Vucevic continues to play at a high level. He is one of only two players currently shooting over 55% from the floor and averaging at least 18 points, ten rebounds and three assists. Giannis Antetokounmpo is the only other player in this club... Aaron Gordon (left ankle sprain) sat out Sunday’s win over the Knicks and is listed as questionable for Monday’s matchup vs. the Wizards. -- Tommy Beer
Bleacher Report - Magic jump from 27 to 25 (Posted Nov. 9)
Orlando got game defensive efforts from both D.J. Augustin and Jerian Grant in Sunday’s 117-110 win over San Antonio, and Aaron Gordon put up a combined 49 points between that win and Monday’s follow-up victory against the Cavs. Evan Fournier hit the buzzer-beater in that one, completing a comeback from a five-point deficit in the final minute.
One way to think of Orlando’s week: The Magic have now beaten the last two non-Warriors teams to win championships. Neat!
Another way: Orlando is still not very good, Jonathan Isaac is out with an injury to the same ankle that cost him months last year, and the lack of three-point shooting means average offense may be impossible. Less neat! -- Grant Hughes