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The Magic Are Facing The Stampeding Bucks

  • Tonight the Magic are facing the stampeding Bucks in Milwaukee, on what is the second night of a back-to-back for Orlando. 

Regular Season Game 27 – Orlando Magic vs Milwaukee Bucks 

  • Venue – Fiserv Forum, Milwaukee, Winsconson
  • U.K. tip time is 1am, which is 8pm local for our friends in Orlando.
  • To watch here in the U.K. you will again need an active NBA League Pass subscription.

Orlando Magic 

  • Regular Season Record: 16-10
  • Run: lost 3 consecutively and are 5-5 in the last 10 games played.
  • Home Record 11-3 (10-2 in the Kia Center; the Atlanta “home court” loss was in Mexico City)
  • Road Record 5-7
  • Standing: 4th in the East 
  • Points Per GameFor 113 (19th) Against 110.1 (4th)
  • RatingOffensive 21st Defensive 3rd
  • Whilst it is disappointing to see that our form has fallen away on both ends of the floor in recent weeks it is important to remember a couple of things about what is still a developmental year.
  • The first is that last season at this point the Magic were at a record of just 6-20. 
  • Secondly, the team are in our toughest stretch of the season. At the schedule release everybody had identified the need for a good start as the schedule from December 11th through January 5th is rough. After that it is a schedule considered by many experts to be one that on paper is against “weaker teams”, featuring no long trips west and heavy on the Eastern Conference opponents.
  • So let’s not over react as fans to a loss or three, or to certain players looking for form for whatever reason.
  • Being a back-to-back I thought we would see how the Magic are fairing.
    • This Season – First Night 2-3 : Second Night 2-2
    • Last Season – First Night 6-7 : Second Night 1-12

Last Time Out – Miami Heat

  • A 9 game home winning streak for the Magic was snapped last night by a 115-106 loss to the Miami Heat.
  • The Heat made 11 straight floor shots going into halftime, smashing what had been a tight game wide open. Orlando never recovered 
  • The Magic shot terribly, particularly from range all game. When they forced turnovers they missed opportunities to score. 
  • Both Paolo Banchero and Franz Wagner were met by a physical Miami presence, that saw both struggle to get a rhythm and heavily impact on the scoreboard. Paolo struggled with his shot, making just 2-of-12 field goal attempts.
  • Cole Anthony gave the Magic a spark to lead the team with 20 points on 8-of-13 shooting. Franz Wagner finished with 15 points, 6 rebounds and 5 assists. Banchero ultimately recorded 8 rebounds and 8 assists to go along with the 10 points. 
  • Both Chuma Okeke and Caleb Houstan put in pretty decent late efforts.
  • The starting unit was Anthony Black, Jalen Suggs, Franz Wagner, Paolo Banchero and Wendell Carter Jr.
  • From the bench came Cole Anthony, Gary Harris, Moritz Wagner, Goga Bitadze, Jonathan Isaac, Caleb Houstan and Chuma Okeke. 
  • Jett Howard was a late recall to the squad but did not play.

Tonight

  • The Magic injury report sees both Joe Ingles (ankle) and Markelle Fultz (left knee tendinitis) listed as day-to-day. Both missed the Miami game.
  • Jett Howard is out, being again on G-League assignment.
  • Two-way player Trevelin Queen is again not part of the squad.
  • Kevon Harris has yet to suit up for Orlando this season and is again listed as a coach’s decision to not play.
  • Wendell Carter Jr played 23 minutes against Miami in his comeback game having missed the previous 20. It is not unreasonable to expect him to feature in the starting rotation again tonight. Anthony Black, Jalen Suggs, Franz Wagner and Paolo Banchero will most likely be others on court at the opening tip.

The Milwaukee Bucks

Season Stats

  • Regular Season Record: 20-7 Run: Won the last 5 consecutively, and 8 of their last 10 played.
  • Standing: 2nd in the East 
  • Points Per GameFor 124.7 (2nd) Against 119.2 (23rd)
  • RatingOffensive 3rd Defensive 19th
  • Give them an opportunity the Bucks will score. They have the second best over all field goal percentage at 50.1% and the second best percentage from the two at 58.7%. With the three-ball they hit 38.2%, the 4th best rate. They also take the third most free throws per game, making 20.6 of the 26.6 attempted.
  • Whilst the defence is not as strong as in previous seasons the Bucks still dominate the defensive rebounding against opponents. 
  • On home court the Bucks have been solid, winning 15 of the 17 played so far this season.

Last Time Out For The Bucks

  • Last time out Milwaukee took a home court 119-132 win over the struggling San Antonio Spurs.
  • Damian Lillard led the way hitting 7-of-12 from distance as part of a total 40 points scored.
  • From the bench Bobby Portis had a 23 point, 10 rebound double-double.
  • Giannis Antetokounmpo had a triple-double of 11 points, 14 rebounds and 16 assists. He also threw in 2 steals and a block.
  • Starting 5 – Damian Lillard, Malik Beasley, Khris Middleton, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Brook Lopez
  • Pat Connaughton, Bobby Portis, Andre Jackson Jr and Cameron Payne played the heavy back-up minutes. Marjon Beauchamp, Robin Lopez, A.J. Green and Thanasis Antetokounmpo also came from the bench.

Tonight

  • The Bucks have an injury concern over Giannis, who is listed as day-to-day and questionable with a foot issue. 
  • Jae Crowder is out.
  • If Giannis is deemed unavailable his absence should see Bobby Portis start.

Head-To-Head With The Bucks 

  • In 125 regular season games played and the score stands at 71-54 to Milwaukee.
  • The Bucks had won 14 straight regular season games going into the season. 
  • Orlando snapped this on Game Day 9 as they beat the Bucks in the then Amway Center, taking a 97-112 win. Paolo Banchero led five Magic players in double figure scoring with 26 points. Giannis led all scorers with 35 points.
  • This was a first home court win for Orlando since March 2018.
  • On the road the Magic last won in Milwaukee on Feb 9th 2019.
  • Over the last four seasons the series has been swept by the Bucks. They have also won the series for the past 7 seasons.
  • Orlando have only won 4 of the last 25 regular season encounters.
  • Throw in the playoffs and it is just 5 wins in 30 games for Orlando. 
  • The last time Orlando won a series was season 2011-2012 (taking it 4-0).

As The Magic Are Facing The Stampeding BucksA Final Thought

  • A second night of a back-to-back on the road at the juggernaut of offence that is the Milwaukee Bucks is far from ideal.
  • If the defence is a stroke off for Orlando this game could go horribly wrong.
  • Against Miami and Boston we saw consistent missed shots, but the greater concern had to be our defence not finding their match ups or contesting the long ball effectively.
  • That is not to be negative, just realistic towards the opponent we face.
  • It has also been true that this season if the Magic defence is locked in we see the offence flow better. The stops just seem to breath a confidence into this still young Magic team.

The Let’s Talk Magic Game Preview

GO MAGIC!