It was hardly a season to remember for the Orlando Magic during the 2021-22 campaign. With a young head coach and a good core of young players, however, progress was certainly made.
The Magic finished just 22-60 a season ago, but there is plenty of reason for optimism. Franz Wagner, Cole Anthony, Markelle Fultz and Jalen Suggs provide a solid young core to build around. Last season, center Wendell Carter Jr. was one of just 17 NBA players to average a double-double.
One of the highlights of the 2022-23 offseason will be the release of the NBA schedule. That has not happened yet. In the meantime, however, here are five fun facts about how Orlando fared against last season’s slate:
1. The Magic were 2-7 in games decided by one possession
There were plenty of close games last season, but in contests decided by one possession – three points or less – Orlando was just 2-7. The Magic’s two victories came over a four-day stretch. After topping the Dallas Mavericks 110-108 on Jan. 30, the Magic held off the Indiana Pacers on Feb. 2, 119-118.
2. The Magic were 0-4 in overtime games
Orlando didn’t fare well in 48-minute games last season, but it was even worse in 53-minute games. The Magic played four overtime contests but lost all four. Orlando didn’t play its first overtime game until Jan. 2 when it melted down late in regulation against Boston. The Magic also suffered overtime losses to the Indiana Pacers, Philadelphia 76ers and Sacramento Kings. Orlando hasn’t won an overtime game since beating the New Orleans Pelicans on April 1, 2021.
3. The Magic only defeated three teams more than once
Given the 22-60 record, there weren’t many teams the Magic did well against. There were, however, three teams that the Magic beat more than once. Although the teams split the season series, two of Orlando’s first four wins came at Madison Square Garden against the New York Knicks. The only Eastern Conference team that the Magic had a winning record against was the Pacers as Orlando’s first and last wins in February came over Indiana. The only Western Conference team that Orlando swept was the Minnesota Timberwolves. The Magic won 115-97 in Minnesota on Nov. 1 and 118-110 in Orlando on March 11.
4. The Magic were swept by four Eastern Conference teams
While Minnesota was the only Western Conference team swept by the Magic last season, six teams form the West managed to sweep Orlando. In the East, four of the 11 teams enjoyed perfect records against the Magic. Unsurprisingly, the Boston Celtics, Milwaukee Bucks and Philadelphia 76ers were all perfect against Orlando. The surprise was the Washington Wizards going 4-0 against the Magic. Four of Washington’s 37 wins came against Orlando and two came by double digits.
5. More than half of the Magic’s wins came against playoff teams
Orlando won just 22 games last season, but 12 came against teams that reached the postseason. In addition to the two wins over Minnesota, the Magic also collected victories over the Utah Jazz, Denver Nuggets, Dallas Mavericks, Brooklyn Nets, Atlanta Hawks, New Orleans Pelicans, Toronto Raptors, Miami Heat, Chicago Bulls, and eventual champion Golden State Warriors.