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New Orleans Pelicans vs Orlando Magic Preview

The New Orleans Pelicans vs Orlando Magic tonight sees a run of four Western Conference playoff chasing teams coming into the Kia Center for this Magic eight game homestand. 

Regular Season Game 70 – New Orleans Pelicans vs Orlando Magic 

  • Venue – Kia Center, Orlando, Florida  
  • Tip time here in the U.K. is 11pm, which is 7pm in Orlando.
  • To watch in the U.K. tonight there are two options available. As always via an active NBA League Pass subscription allows viewing live or on demand. The alternative tonight is that TNT Sports 2 are broadcasting the game live.

Orlando Magic 

Season Stats

  • Regular Season Record: 41-28
  • Run: Won 4 and are 8-2 in the last 10 played.
  • Home Record 24-9 (24-8 in the Kia Center; one “home court” loss was in Mexico City).
  • Road Record 17-19
  • Standing: 5th in the East
  • Points Per GameFor 110.8 Against 108.8
  • RatingOffensive 24th Defensive 3rd
  • The Magic have on 20 occasions this season held opponents to under 100 points, winning 17 of those games.
  • When Orlando lead going into the final quarter of a game this season they hold a 34-1 record, leading the league in this category. 
  • Orlando remain perfect at Kia Center against sub-.500 teams (15-0) this season.
  • The Magic are now guaranteed some form of postseason involvement. The record is such that a play-in tournament berth is the lowest the Magic can now finish.

Last Time Out – vs Charlotte Hornets

  • The Magic cruised to a 96-116 home court victory over the Hornets on Tuesday night (19th March).
  • The Hornets were undermanned and the Magic ruthlessly took advantage.
  • With 5 minutes remaining of the first quarter Orlando hit the accelerator. What followed to half time was elite play on both ends. As always for Orlando defence was the foundation, building to a dominant 41 point lead, before going into the locker room with a 32-67 score. 
  • In the half Orlando shot 65% from the field and 50% from 3-point distance.
  • The second half saw many Magic players get vastly reduced minutes. Jonathan Isaac did not feature at all.
  • Cole Anthony led with 21 points. He hit 19 in the first half, on perfect 8-of-8 shooting from the field. Cole’s effort was a large part of building the lead in all areas of the game.
  • Jalen Suggs followed with 16 points and 6 assists. Suggs’ contribution included the highlight play of the night. Suggs stole the ball in his own defensive arc. Sprinting up court he fed Paolo Banchero. Paolo drove into the paint, before throwing a no-look-behind-the-back pass to Suggs. Jalen set his feet, sinking a left wing corner three. 
  • On limited action, Paolo Banchero had 13 points and 5 assists. Franz Wagner finished with 11 points but struggled from range.
  • Jonathan Isaac in under 8 minutes of play recorded 8 points and harried the life out of any opponent with the misfortune to be guarded by him.
  • The starting lineup was Jalen Suggs, Gary Harris, Franz Wagner, Paolo Banchero and Wendell Carter Jr.
  • From the bench came Jonathan Isaac, Markelle Fultz, Cole Anthony, Joe Ingles and Moritz Wagner. The final 6 minutes were closed out by Anthony Black, Caleb Houstan, Chuma Okeke, Admiral Schofield and Goga Bitadze.
  • Jett Howard, Kevon Harris and Trevelin Queen were inactive for the Magic.

Tonight

  • Jett Howard is out being assigned to the G-League with the Osceola Magic.
  • Trevelin Queen and Kevon Harris are listed as unavailable, being two-way players.
  • Therefore, it is reasonable to expect that Coach Mosley runs those favoured starting and bench rotations.

The New Orleans Pelicans 

Season Stats

  • Regular Season Record: 42-26 Run: Won 3 and are at 8-2 in the last 10 played.
  • Standing: 5th in the West 
  • Points Per GameFor 116 Against 110.7
  • RatingOffensive 8th Defensive 5th
  • On the season New Orleans have a 22-13 road record.
  • New Orleans do not shoot at anywhere near the highest rate in the league, but what they do shoot is done with accuracy. They have the 5th best percentage from the three and are 8th for over all field goal percentage. They also rank extremely well in points from turnovers, on fast breaks, in the paint and on second chance scoring. 
  • Defensive statistics are strong in restricting second chances points, along with points in the paint and from turnovers. Though the Pels allow teams to shoot the three almost 39 times a game they concede on only a third of those efforts. 
  • They have talent, size and are finally seeing a healthy roster.
  • Zion Williamson is averaging a shade shy of 30 points per game in the last five games played, on the season he leads the Pelicans with 22.7 ppg. Brandon Ingram weighs in with 21 points per game, CJ McCollum 18.3. Trey Murphy III, Jonas Valanciunas and Herb Jones all average double digit scoring.
  • Valanciunas, Williamson, Ingram and Larry Nance Jr are all very effective rebounders

Last Time Out For The New Orleans Pelicans 

  • New Orleans took a road win over the Brooklyn Nets by 104-91 on Tuesday (March 19th).
  • The Nets led for less than a total of 30 seconds. A big second quarter allowed for a comfortable margin of victory to be secured and maintained.
  • Zion Williamson led the Pelicans in scoring with 28 points. CJ McCollum added 16, with Herbert Jones and Brandon Ingram both dropping 11 points.
  • Larry Nance Jr led the bench with a 13 points and 10 rebounds double-double. Trey Murphy III rounded out the double digit scoring with 10.
  • Starting 5 – CJ McCollum, Herbert Jones, Brandon Ingram, Zion Williamson, Jonas Valanciunas
  • From the bench came Larry Nance Jr, Jose Alvarado, Trey Murphy III and Naji Marshall.
  • Cody Zeller, Jordan Hawkins, Matt Ryan and Jeremiah Robinson-Earl were unused by the coach.
  • Dyson Daniels, Malcolm Hill, EJ Liddell and Dereon Seabron were all inactive.

Tonight

  • Dyson Daniels is confirmed as out following a left knee meniscus tear.
  • Matt Ryan is questionable with an illness.
  • Malcolm Hill, EJ Liddell and Dereon Seabron all being two-way players are listed as unavailable.
  • Head coach Willie Green will likely use the same starting 5 as in their last matchup.

New Orleans Pelicans vs Orlando Magic – Head-To-Head

  • The head-to-head record across all the various franchise titles of the now New Orleans Pelicans sees the Magic leading 25-20 in the 45 regular season games played. Against the New Orleans Pelicans the Magic lead 14-6. 
  • The Magic are on a 3 game streak over New Orleans. Last season was a 2-0 series win for Orlando. The previous two seasons have been a 1-1 split, with both teams winning on the road. 
  • Tonight is the first meeting between the two teams this season. The road fixture comes on game day 76 (April 3rd), the Magic having won 6 straight in the Smoothie King Center.
  • Orlando have not lost the series since season 2011-12.

A Final Thought For The New Orleans Pelicans vs Orlando Magic

  • Being able to sit so many of his players in the second half of the Charlotte game is a bonus for Coach Mosley. Having reduced minutes in that game has given valuable rest ahead of a tougher run for the Magic, the next four opponents being the New Orleans Pelicans, the Sacramento Kings (40-28), the Golden State Warriors (36-32) and the Los Angeles Clippers (43-25).
  • This season continues to see the team hitting Orlando Magic milestones. A 35 point-plus lead at the half has only been achieved twice previously in Magic history. The record for Orlando is 38 on January 9th 2009 against the Atlanta Hawks. The other was by 35 against the Hornets on February 14th 2019. 
  • This game and what is to follow are undoubtedly valuable moments on the learning curve. The coaching staff are applying their experience to the team in building readiness to the postseason. 
  • The race for the playoffs in each Conference is exceptionally competitive. In the East the Magic are 3 games clear of the Miami Heat (7th) and the Philadelphia 76ers (8th); both with a 37-31 record. Orlando are chasing Cleveland in 3rd (43-26) and the New York Knicks in 4th (41-27). For the Pels it is a tight battle with the Clippers (4th) and the Kings (6th).

The Let’s Talk Magic Game Preview

GO MAGIC!