The Orlando Magic started the 2019-20 season on the right foot on Wednesday night with an ugly 94-85 win over the Cleveland Cavaliers.
The Magic are now set to hit the road for the first time on the young season with contests against the Atlanta Hawks and reigning world champion Toronto Raptors. Before the Magic and Hawks tip things off on Saturday night, here are five fast facts pertaining to the opener:
1. Orlando’s victory is the only NBA game so far this season where neither team scored 100 points
It’s long been no secret that shots and particularly three-point shots are more abundant in the modern NBA and therefore, scoring is up. That wasn’t the case at the Amway Center on Wednesday night. Through the first three nights of the NBA regular season, Orlando’s 94-85 victory over the Cavaliers is the only game this season where neither team hit the 100-point mark. It should be noted that there was another game where neither team eclipsed the 100-point mark as the Utah Jazz defeated the Oklahoma City Thunder on Wednesday night, 100-95.
2. The 85 points allowed is the fewest by Orlando in an opener since 2010
Keeping with the theme of little scoring, the 85 points allowed to the Cavaliers on Wednesday was the fewest given up by the Magic in an opener since holding the Washington Wizards to 83 points in the first-ever game at the Amway Center on Oct. 28, 2010. Orlando held Cleveland to 37.5 percent shooting. That’s also the lowest percentage against the Magic in an opener since the Wizards shot 37.2 percent in the 2010-11 opener.
3. Vucevic’s 21 points is career-best in season opener
As he has so often, All-Star center Nikola Vucevic led the Magic in scoring on Wednesday night. Vucevic recorded 21 points on 8-for-16 shooting to go with 10 rebounds. For Vucevic, the 21 points is the most that he has ever scored on opening night. Prior to Wednesday, his highest total to open the season was 19 points in last season’s win over Miami.
4. Every No. 1 overall pick to play for Orlando has scored 12 in Magic debut
As noted earlier this week, Markelle Fultz became the fourth-ever No. 1 overall pick to play for the Magic. Interestingly enough, each of them have scored 12 points in their Orlando debut. Fultz finished with 12 points on 6-for-12 shooting to go with six assists and two steals on Wednesday night. Shaquille O’Neal finished with 12 points, 18 rebounds and three blocks in his debut against the Miami Heat on Nov. 6, 1992. To begin his final season in the NBA, Patrick Ewing finished with 12 points, eight rebounds and three blocks in a win over the Toronto Raptors on Oct. 30, 2001. Dwight Howard recorded 12 points, 10 rebounds and four blocks in his debut against the Milwaukee Bucks on Nov. 3, 2004. All four contests resulted in victories for the Magic.
5. Orlando has won three straight openers for first time in more than a decade
With Wednesday’s 94-85 victory over Cleveland, the Magic have now started 1-0 in three straight seasons. Orlando opened each of the previous two seasons with victories over the Miami Heat. That’s the longest streak for the Magic since winning five straight openers from the 2000-01 season through the 2004-05 season.