2007/2008 Season Preview - Orlando Magic

Discussion in 'Pistons and NBA' started by mikhail1973, Oct 11, 2007.

  1. mikhail1973

    mikhail1973 All-Star Administrator 1x Fantasy Champion

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    Season 2006/2007

    Record 40-42


    Team’s season left dual impression. On one hand the team finally made it to the playoffs. However, if you look at making the playoffs as the stepping stone to the future, Magic has disappointed. After showing its best and collecting wins quickly before the New Year, Brian Hill’s team became to show weaknesses. Howard showed his offensive one-sidedness. Turkoglu was playing as an independent contractor. And Jameer Nelson never became that dreaded point guard that Orlando fans had dreamed about. They got swept in the first round by Pistons.

    Offseason

    Draft

    Nothing really to talk about here as Magic traded their first-round pick to Pistons. One of the past team draftees is still in Europe and doesn’t look like he’s every going to join the roster.


    Key Trades

    Signed: Rashard Lewis. Orlando signed this tall and thin (read injury-prone) sniper, paying incredible, even by NBA’s liberal standards money. Will the team get the return on the investment?

    Left: Grant Hill and Darko Milicic


    Offseason grade: C

    Season 2007/2008

    Last season, well at least in the first half, the team played pretty decent half-court offensive scheme (thanks to Grant Hill) and played organized defensively (third best opponents shooting percentage). Now without Grant and Darko team loses a lot on the defensive end. Shorter guards like Nelson, Arroyo, and Dooling are going to be struggling against Smush Parker/J-Will duo. And their division also has players like Gilbert Arenas and Joe Johnson.

    What will be effective this year with the addition of Lewis? No matter how you look at it, Magic’s success will primarily depend on how Rashard will fit in with his teammates. Orlando does not have many stars and Lewis will have to produce in order for team to win. He is tall and quick with an excellent jump shot and should benefit from Howard’s play down low. However, Howard would have to see the game and react quicker to the double-teams. He struggled with turnovers all year long. And in order for Howard to be more effective, Lewis has to produce and attract more defensive efforts from the opponent leaving Howard to operate under the basket.
    Now more on Howard. He is shooting 60% from the field. Lets look at how does he arrive at that high rate of success and if there is something that is a cause for concern. He attempts shots from the mid-range distance about 17% of the time (in comparison Duncan and Boozer get half of their points from there; Garnett, Jermaine O’Neal, and Elton Brand – 2/3) and he hits them at 28% clip. Every sixth his shot attempt is blocked because he can’t shoot jumpers and doesn’t get high off the ground. Everything else is dunks, offensive rebounds, and layups. That’s why his field goal percentage looks so high. His strongest and the only one-on-one move in his offensive arsenal at this time is a turn move where he dribbles with his left hand and uses right to ward off the defender. Like so:

    [​IMG]
    Once the defender is behind Howard throws the ball through the hoop. This is an effective move, but not against everyone because it is all so redundant
    You are going to hear a question posed by many basketball fans – “How about Shaq? Didn’t he reach success without a shot?” When he was 21, O’Neal averaged 30 points per game and he did it several times a season against the likes of David Robinson, Patrick Ewing, and Hakeem Olajuwon. Howard, being the same age, averages 17 points and he has to go against the likes of Brandon Haywood and Nenad Krstic.
    I don’t think Howard will ever be like O’Neal. He doesn’t have that size and that type of strength. As one Russian sports forum member rightly noticed: players like O’Neal only come around once every 100 years, and players like Howard once every 10 years. Dwight needs some type of a shot to be successful.
    Magic also lost one its starters to the season ending surgery. Battie is out and the team is going to struggle to replace him. This leaves Orlando even smaller all around.

    Note of importance

    Stan VanGundy the new coach. He left his last job under quite unpleasant circumstances – he was just told to get out of the way as not to prevent Pat Riley from doing the job. How much did it hurt his self-esteem? What can he get out of Orlando’s team this season? Who will be coach’s favorite and lead the team? I guess we’ll get all the answers in the next 10 months.


    Bottom Line

    6th-9th place in the conference look about right.

    Playoffs – maybe
    Championship - no
     
  2. TheeTFD

    TheeTFD All-Star

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    Star power vs team play
    with improved coaching
    39 and 43 and not in the playoffs.</p>
     
  3. TaS

    TaS All-Star Forum Donor

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    Big game by Carlos Arroyo today vs. the Chinese National Team.

    25 points, 3 boards, 9 assists, and 4 steals.

    Sidenote:
    The Chinese team has 3 Wangs and 1 Zhang.
     
  4. mikhail1973

    mikhail1973 All-Star Administrator 1x Fantasy Champion

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    :pound::pound::pound::pound::pound::gun1:
     

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