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The Orlando Magic Play The Milwaukee Bucks

It is back home in the 407 tonight as the Orlando Magic play the Milwaukee Bucks. Challenges don’t come much harder than this in the NBA, potentially facing the new Giannis and Dame partnership.

Regular Season Game 9 – Milwaukee Bucks vs Orlando Magic

  • Venue – Amway Center, Orlando, Florida 
  • U.K. tip time is 11pm, which is 6pm for our friends in Orlando. 
  • To watch here in the U.K. you will need an active NBA League Pass subscription. 

Orlando Magic 

  • Season Record: 4-4 Run: lost 2
  • Home Record 2-2 Road Record 2-2
  • Standing: tied 6th (tied 6th-10th with the Miami, Toronto, New York and Brooklyn) in the East
  • Points Per Game: For 109.9 (21st) Against 107.2 (5th)
  • Rating: Offensive 22nd Defensive 4th
  • The Magic continue to rank second in the league 2nd for steals made per game and are 3rd for free throws attempted.
  • Scoring is being led now by Paolo Banchero (18.1) with Franz Wagner dropping back to 17.9 ppg after a couple of games where the points have been down. Cole Anthony is the third leading scorer on the team, coming from the bench for 14.8 points per game.
  • Paolo Banchero is also the team leader for assists (5.4) per game. Jalen Suggs is the team leader for steals per game at 2.3 per game.

Last Game 

  • As part of the NBA’s Global Games the Magic travelled to Mexico City for a home fixture against the Atlanta Hawks. In a tight, hard fought game Orlando came away defeated by 120-119.
  • Fouls and turnovers were to be expected against Atlanta who are league leaders in drawing fouls, shooting free throws and making steals. 18 Magic turnovers resulted in 27 Atlanta points. Some missed open threes hurt but Orlando shot 37% from distance (10-of-27). Failure again from the free throw line was ultimately the killer as Orlando shot 25-of-35 from the stripe. However all were contributing factors to the loss.
  • Jalen Suggs led seven Orlando players in scoring double figures, a season-high 21 points. Suggs also had 6 of the Magic’s 12 steals. Paolo Banchero scored 17, whilst Markelle Fultz and Moe Wagner each had 13 points.
  • Jonathan Isaac returned to impact on both ends, finishing with 12 points, 7 rebounds and 2 blocks. He also closed the game playing the centre role to the buzzer.
  • Against a leading rebounding team Orlando had a strong game on the boards. 
  • The starting unit was Markelle Fultz, Jalen Suggs, Franz Wagner, Paolo Banchero and Goga Bitadze.
  • The 4 from the bench were Cole Anthony, Anthony Black, Jonathan Isaac, Moe Wagner, Joe Ingles and Chuma Okeke.

Tonight

  • Our injury report is down to two. Gary Harris remains out with a groin injury. Wendell Carter Jr is out having had a fracture to the left hand middle finger surgically repaired. Wendell will be re-evaluated in 3 weeks (the last week of November), but could be out until the new year.
  • Expect our starting unit to continue as Markelle Fultz, Jalen Suggs, Franz Wagner, Paolo Banchero and Goga Bitadze. Coach Mosely will use his core second unit of Anthony Black, Cole Anthony, Joe Ingles, Jonathan Isaac and Moe Wagner. Situational need such as injury or foul trouble will dictate if any other player features from the bench.

The Milwaukee Bucks

Looking Back

  • Last season had a 58-24 record, seeing the Bucks finish 1st in the East. What followed was a 1-4 first round exit in the playoffs to the 8th seed Miami Heat.
  • The off-season saw new head coach Adrian Griffin appointed. 
  • The headline trade of the summer saw the key addition of Damian Lillard made. Malik Beasley, Robin Lopez, TyTy Washington Jr and Cameron Payne have also been signed. 

Season Stats

  • Season Record: 5-3 Run: lost 1
  • Standing: tied 4th (tied 4th-5th with the Atlanta Hawks) in the East
  • Points Per Game: For 118 (8th) Against 120.2 (25th)
  • Rating: Offensive 9th Defensive 25th
  • The Bucks have so far only played teams from the Eastern Conference and have lost two-of-three road games so far. 
  • Offensively this is a team that take the league’s most free throws (29.3 per game, making 22.8 77.8%). They shoot an average of 37 three-pointers per game and make 13.5 of them (36.5%). Dame (second most made, 4th most attempted) and Giannis (league leader in most attempted, 4th in free throws made) lead the team here. The team rank next to last for assists, with 22 per game. The 1-2-punch of Giannis and Lillard accounts for a combined 52.4 points per game.
  • Defensively they do limit personal fouls and so do not give up a high rate of free throws. Somewhat surprising is that they are not a strong as a team rebounding on either end of the court (though Giannis is top 20 in most rebound categories). Giannis and Brook Lopez are top 10 for blocks but again as a team they rank poorly. 

Last Time Out For The Bucks

  • Milwaukee tasted defeat on the road to the Indiana Pacers in in their last game by 124-126.
  • Having trailed by 18 in the first quarter the Bucks took a lead going into the final period. They pushed it out to 10 points with 7 minutes remaining, before the Pacers cut the deficit and tied the game with two minutes thirty remaining. A close battle the rest of the way saw the Pacers come away with the W.
  • Damian Lillard was out injured but Giannis led the team with a double-double of 12 rebounds and 54 points.
  • Starting 5 – Cameron Payne, Khris Middleton, Malik Beasley, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Brook Lopez

Tonight

  • Their injury report has just one name on it, Damian Lillard is questionable with a calf injury.
  • If he makes it then expect Cam Payne to drop back to the bench.
  • The starting 5 has featured Malik Beasley, Giannis Antetokounmpo and Brook Lopez in all 8 games. When fit Khris Middleton (6 games) and Damian Lillard (7 games) have started. 
  • Pat Connaughton, Bobby Portis, Jae Crowder and Marjon Beauchamp come from the bench.

Head-To-Head With The Bucks 

  • In 124 regular season games played and the score stands at 71-53 to Milwaukee.
  • Over the last four seasons the series has been swept by the Bucks. They have also won the series for the past 7 seasons.
  • The Bucks have won 14 straight regular season games. 
  • Orlando have only won 3 of the last 24 regular season encounters.
  • Throw in the playoffs and it is just 4 wins in 29 games for Orlando. 
  • The last time Orlando won at home was March 2018.
  • The last time Orlando won a series was season 2011-2012 (taking it 4-0).

As The Orlando Magic Play The Milwaukee Bucks A Final Thought

  • It has to be time to break their winning run!
  • Orlando will have to find some way of slowing Giannis, the 7 times All-Star, twice MVP and once finals MVP. If Damian Lillard is fit to play that task becomes so much harder. 
  • On defence Orlando will face a choice between trying to limit Giannis by double or triple teaming him. That gives space to allow others to flourish. Or do they focus on preventing others from playing and live with whatever Giannis does.
  • For certain to have any opportunity to win Orlando will need to be more effective down the stretch than against Atlanta. That is also true of their opportunities at the free throw line.

The Let’s Talk Magic Game Preview

GO MAGIC!