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Orlando Sentinel

Pistons end Magic's season in Game 5

Hedo is a sticky situation for the Magic. He has played very well overall, and certainly better than expected. However, he also happens to play the same position as the guy you just gave a max contract to. He had the ball in his hands three times at the end of a game in this series, and didnít convert once. Donít you want the guy you paid the max contract to, or even Dwight, with the ball at the end of the game? Lewis is so passive, heíll accept that, but I donít think thatís what you want as a team. Lewis (or Howard) needs to be your leader and finisher. Some have suggested playing Hedo at the SG position, but I donít think that would work defensively. Heís not a particularly good defender to start with, and most SGs are going to go right around him with no difficulty. You might be able to bring him off the bench as a 3 behind Lewis, but Iím guessing that their may not be enough minutes for both of them. You probably wonít be able to sign him after next year, so you probably should trade him next year to get something for him. Stan Van Gundy is definitely an improvement over Brian Hill and you probably have your coach for the next 3 or 4 years, but it was interesting to hear him in his post-game interview last night. He basically said he has to reexamine some of the things heís been doing, and I assume he meant the overall offensive and defensive strategy for the team. I donít know how much of that is just coming because of the loss, or how much is serious but it will be interesting to see how much the team philosophy changes next year. The scary thing for you guys is this: Where is the money going to come from to help you with some of these deficiencies? Is DeVoss likely to spend into the luxury cap? You should probably focus a little more on building the team to beat the Pistons specifically. Whether itís the 2nd round or the conference finals, Iím pretty sure weíre going to be meeting up again. Along those lines, Iíve also heard a lot of Magic fans say that itís only a matter of time; that the Magic are getting better and the Pistons are old and the ďwindow is closingĒ. Iím not trying to rain your parade, but the Pistons have young guys waiting to integrate as our ďoldĒ guys become less valuable. Rodney Stuckey should be making every Magic fan **** their collective heads against the wall. This was your pick (not that Otis necessarily would have picked the same guy), and he helped beat you this year. Aaron Afflalo is going to be our starting SG in 3 or 4 years. He plays great defense and has a good jump shot, as well as the ability to finish at the basket. Jason Maxiell might be starting next year (I know he didnít do much the last two games, but heís going to be good long-term). You didnít even see Amir Johnson this series, and he has the best rebound and blocks per minute stats on our team. And this doesnít even mention what Joe D might come up with in trades, signings, and drafts for the next several years. Peace to all Magic fans. See you in the Playoffs next year.  (May 14, 2008 | post #292)

Orlando Sentinel

Pistons end Magic's season in Game 5

The Pistons didnít shoot well (36%) and the Magic did (48%), but turnovers (21 vs 3), free throws (something like 57% for the Magic and around 86% for the Pistons), and rebounds (McDyess with 17 alone) were the tale of the game. Of course, you canít always count on your opponent setting the record for lowest turnovers in a playoff game EVER on any given night (especially with a rookie point guard). The Magic are a good team and they should be better next year because of experience. You mentioned the need for another big guy, and you are probably right. Although, Gortat may develop into a solid guy off the bench and if Cook is healthy and you decide that Vasquez or Augustine can actually play you might be alright. But that is a lot of ďmaysĒ. I was mostly surprised that Lewis came up so small in this game, with only 14 points. I think he played like a $15 Million man a grand total of once in this series. You donít sign him (or anybody else) for that much money to help you beat teams like Toronto. You pay someone that kind of money to help you beat teams like Detroit, Cleveland, and Boston. Jameer played pretty well, but honestly, heís a backup in this league. You have to have a point guard who can play defense and he just canít match up with the other PGís in the EC. He is doing better with turnovers and shot the ball pretty well. Honestly, I would think STRONGLY about letting him play the SG position, and although that doesnít hide him on defense, it does allow him to be more aggressive offensively and it also allows Otis to justify paying him so much and still replacing him at the PG position. Keep Evans as the backup SG (heís not really a starter in this league either) for size when you need it. Dwight played ok, but he honestly didnít have the impact on the game that you would expect from a max-contract guy either. You guys are banking on him developing his game significantly over the next couple of years, but I find myself saying basically the same things about him this year that I said last year. He doesnít have much offensively other than the dunk. He canít shoot free-throws. He has turnover issues (although he was a little better about that this series VS. last year). You need him to develop a shot to be a true Superstar.  (May 14, 2008 | post #291)

Orlando Sentinel

Orlando's players believe they can win

Those Magic fans who are worried about your team defense, and individual defenders, are on the right path. The teams that win Championships are teams that play great defense. The Magic aren't in that conversation yet.  (May 13, 2008 | post #90)

Orlando Sentinel

Detroit Pistons are wearing down the Orlando Magic in NBA...

With what money? I continue to be surprised by all the optimism about the "future" of the Magic. Don't you guys realize your GM has crippled your team financially and you won't have the money to attract the quality players you will need to fill in the holes that your team obviously has? Are you relying on the weather to attract players?  (May 12, 2008 | post #9)

Orlando Sentinel

Question: Did Magic learn anything?

The Magic and its fans can continue to think that in just a couple of years that they will surpass the Pistons in the EC, but it may not happen that way. Joe Dumars has a collection of talented young players at every position that are learning the game and will be ready to step in when it's time for the veterans to take reduced roles. Don't count your chickens just yet, Magic.  (May 11, 2008 | post #1)

Orlando Sentinel

ripped away

Rashard Lewis sounds exactly like Chauncey Billups. Pistons fans have been hearing that from the team for the last 3 years. Also, this is 2 times in the last 3 games that Hedo has been retarded at the end of the game. Maybe it's time to take the ball out of his hands on the final play?  (May 11, 2008 | post #6)

Orlando Sentinel

Heartache at home: Magic fall to Pistons

Just to be clear: the reason that Magic fans feel like they are not being taken seriously is because they are not. There are too many comments here about how the Magic got screwed by the refs, or about how much Detroit complains to the officials, or about what a crappy city Detroit is. If you don't talk about what really happened in this game (The Magic get outplayed down the stretch) and continue to hold on to your conspiracy theories, no one will take you seriously.  (May 11, 2008 | post #179)

Orlando Sentinel

Talented Pistons backup point guard Rodney Stuckey sore r...

I'm just stating the obvious, man. I was taking a poke at Otis. Man, you need to chill.  (May 11, 2008 | post #3)

Orlando Sentinel

Talented Pistons backup point guard Rodney Stuckey sore r...

Otis Smith should not be allowed to make any more trades with Joe Dumars. 'Nuff said.  (May 10, 2008 | post #1)

Orlando Sentinel

Orlando Magic look to get Detroit Pistons to play their f...

The playoffs is about imposing your will and style of play on the other team, regardless of that style. The Magic can be "dancers " and still be tough because they force the Pistons to play their style.  (May 10, 2008 | post #1)

Orlando Sentinel

Sore Billups forced to watch

Magic fans have been tricked into thinking that Chauncey Billups is a dominating player when he's really not. He has better-than-his-av erage games against the Magic because of their small guards. If you've been paying attention for the last 5 years you'd notice that the Pistons are the only conference champions without a true superstar. They can still play their game without Chauncey, it'll just be harder. Besides, Stuckey at up Jameer for 19. You may wish Chauncey was back on the floor before this is all over.  (May 9, 2008 | post #10)

Orlando Sentinel

Magic bounce back with big win over Pistons

it seems ridiculous for Rashard to imply that because the Magic hit more of their shots, that must mean they "Wanted it more" than the Pistons. I did not see a Piston's team that lost for lack of trying. They were definitely out of sync, but this was not an example of lazy play on their part. If making open shots was just a matter of focus and willpower, guys like Walter Hermann and Lindsey Hunter would shoot 100%  (May 8, 2008 | post #166)

Orlando Sentinel

NBA: Chancey Billups' 3-point shot shouldn't have counted...

It would have been nice if the refs had noticed that the clock wasn't running, but they were focused on what was going on in the play, not the clock. The clock system is designed to run almost automatically, and they weren't assuming there would be an issue. Those of you suggesting the refs should have acted otherwise after the play are just showing your own ignorance and giving Magic fans a bad reputation as fans that don't know or don't care to know the game of basketball. The refs acted in the only way the rules allowed them to after the play finished. They couldn't take the points off the board. They couldn't watch the replay. They couldn't replay the play. I know I'd be upset if it had happened to the Pistons, but you have to play as close to the rules as possible, even after a mistake. YES, the rules should be changed to allow limited use of video replay. But that is a completely different argument than the one that most of you are making.  (May 7, 2008 | post #35)

Orlando Sentinel

Rasheed now a masked man

This seems like a fun idea and I don't have any problem with it in principle. Unfortunately, someone didn't do their homework on Reasheed Wallace. He is at his best when he's worked up, and an arena full of taunting fans is sure to work him up. Another interesting fact: While many of you Magic fans will be wearing your Magic Blue to the game tonight, don't forget that the Detroit Pistons road colors are also blue. Interesting coincidence, huh? I'll be in my Piston's blue shirt and I'm sure I will fit right in with the crowd.  (May 7, 2008 | post #20)

Orlando Sentinel

Magic finally come to life against Pistons -- in defeat

Don't forget that the Magic basically don't have any help off the bench. Not only do you need help in the starting lineup, you actually need guys off the bench you can count on. I think there's more work to do that some of you would like to admit.  (May 6, 2008 | post #16)

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