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Magic At The Cavaliers

  • Tonight is the second preseason game for Orlando, another road game this time in Cleveland with the Magic at the Cavaliers. Last season, the Cavs won all four meetings against the Magic.
  • U.K. tip time is midnight, that’s 7pm for our friends in Orlando and local in Cleveland.
  • To watch here in the U.K. you will need an active NBA League Pass subscription.

Orlando Magic 

So Far

  • Magic basketball returned with a preseason opening road win over the New Orleans Pelicans by 122-105 
  • The Magic fell behind by double digits in the first half, expected rustiness was evident but their defensive intensity picked up and so did the scoring as a result. 
  • Rotations saw everyone get minutes except Joe Ingles, Caleb Houstan and Kevon Harris. Ingles makes sense having played big minutes with Australia very recently and at 36 deserves some extra recovery time. Houstan and Harris were held out through minor niggles. 
  • The starting 5 was Markelle Fultz, Jalen Suggs, Franz Wagner, Paolo Banchero and Wendell Carter Jr. The bench backup rotation that played during the first half was Anthony Black, Cole Anthony, Gary Harris, Jonathan Isaac and Moritz Wagner
  • Let’s do a quick rookie watch – Anthony Black scored just 2 points on 1-of-5 floor shooting, but his defence was excellent, seeing deflections and shots altered as a result of active hands. Jett Howard put up 8 points on 3-of-8 shooting.
  • Wendell Carter Jr led all scorers in the game. He sank four of his five 3-point attempts on his way to scoring 18 points. He could easily be on for a big season.
  • Cole Anthony came off the bench and scored 13 points. He was the man to cut into the deficit. I’m a Cole fan and can we just get him tied into the future with this team please?
  • I guess we should also mention Jonathan Isaac. JI is a difference maker to this team, his 8 minutes yielded 7 points, 2 blocks and a steal. 
  • As a team there were 10 blocks, 8 steals and 29 assists. They shot 43.6% from the field and 33.3% with the three.

Tonight For The Magic At The Cavaliers

  • The Magic will again play the majority of the squad in a lot of different rotations. No one will play starter minutes, expect no one to go much over 20 minutes. Last time out Paolo and Markelle logged 20 minutes and this was a team high. 
  • Our projected starting 5 for Orlando tonight is again – PG Markelle Fultz, SG Jalen Suggs, SF Franz Wagner, PF Paolo Banchero, C Wendell Carter Jr
  • Orlando again have no injuries listed, but remember there were the two niggles to Caleb Houstan (right ankle sprain) and Kevon Harris (sore right knee) in New Orleans that weren’t listed. 


Off Season Review

  • Last season’s 51-31 record saw the Cavs have their best campaign since LeBron left, finishing 4th in the East. What followed was perhaps a surprising 1-4 first round exit to the New York Knicks
  • Their aim for the new season is to remain a top 5 team in the East and make a deep run on the playoffs (not rocket science I know)
  • The top end rotation and back up core of the team was under contract and has been kept in tact, so they come in with the benefit of continuity and stability 
  • The have extend Caris LeVert at a reasonable cost. They brought in needed floor spacing and reliable shooting Max Strus and Georges Niang. They moved on from a lot of role players such as Cedi Osman, Robin Lopez, Danny Green, Raul Neto, Lamar Stevens and Dylan Windler.

Preseason So Far

  • Cleveland kicked off their preseason with a 107-108 loss in Atlanta, facing the Hawks on Tuesday night.
  • They made 13 steals in the game, getting 24 points from fast breaks. The 3 point shot was a little clunky at 27% but in total it was a nice overall 46.5% from the field.
  • They rolled out a starting unit of Darius Garland, Donovan Mitchell, Caris LeVert, Max Strus and Evan Mobley
  • Isaac Okoro led the team with 19 points on a team high 20 minutes played.

Cleveland Tonight For The Magic At The Cavaliers

  • Jarrett Allen and Ricky Rubio sat out the Atlanta game. Allen was listed as a game time decision so could again miss out.
  • Projected starting 5 – PG Darius Garland, SG Donovan Mitchell, SF Max Strus, PF Evan Mobley, C Jarrett Allen (if fit) otherwise it will again be SF Caris LeVert, PF Max Strus and C Evan Mobley.

Our Preseason Mantra

  • The win was a great start for the Magic, more importantly everyone came through it healthy. We said it previously; preseason is not all about results. It is as much about trying rotations, putting into practice what has been worked on in training camp and most importantly the conditioning. There may also have been some agreement between both coaches to play particular defensive sets, such as 5 minutes of zone. Don’t get hung up on the results.

The Penny For Your Thoughts Podcast Game Preview

Here is the Penny For Your Thoughts Podcast game preview for the Magic at the Cavaliers.