For the Magic it is the second night of a back-to-back as the Boston Celtics come to Orlando. The Magic must react after a mauling last night at the hands of the Memphis Grizzlies.
The tip time from Orlando is shown on the Orlando Magic website as being 11pm here in the UK (6pm Eastern for our friends in Orlando). To watch the game live or on demand in the UK you will need an active NBA League Pass 2021/22 subscription.
Here is a look ahead to the match-up tonight.
Last Games And Season Records.
The Orlando Magic
Saturday 5th February – Memphis Grizzlies 135 – 115 Orlando Magic
Magic Top Performances – Cole Anthony produced a better offensive game than of late. He was far more efficient scoring his 22 points, 6 rebounds and 5 assists. Jalen Suggs could have got more than the 17 points he tallied but missed a highlight reel dunk. He also added 5 assists. Franz Wagner had 15 points, for his 46th double-digit scoring game in 54 played this season. Wendell Carter Jr produced another double-double, his 22nd of the season. Ignas Brazdeikis came from the bench to produce a strong 13 point contribution.
Orlando now has a record of 12 wins and 43 losses. The Magic are at the bottom of the Eastern Conference and hold the worst record in the NBA. In the last 10 games played the Magic have won 4. The home record stands at 5 wins of 24 games played, whilst on the road it is 7 wins in 30 played. In points per game the Magic are scoring 103.3 whilst conceding 111.3. The efficiency rating for the Magic remains 28th on offence but dropped to 22nd defensively.
The Boston Celtics
Playing on Friday February 4th, the Celtics secured a win on the road in Detroit by 102-93. Jayson Tatum led the C’s with 24 points. The remainder of the scoring was spread across the team, as everyone contributed.
The Boston Celtics have record of 29 wins and 25 losses, seeing them 8th in the Eastern Conference. Of the last 10 games played Boston have won 7, including the last 4 straight. On the road Boston have a losing record, winning 11 of 26 games played. The Celtics score 108 points per game and concede 104.4.
Head-To-Head – The Boston Celtics
The head-to-head record sees the Celtics leading 71-51 in the 122 regular season games played. Recent history is not with us and sees the Celtics on a 8 game winning streak over Orlando.
This is the third meeting of the season. The first on November 3rd saw Orlando lose on a cold shooting night in the Amway Center 92-79. The second was a controversial loss in Boston, with the Celtics taking the win 111-116 on January 2nd. An exciting game, went to overtime before the controversy came. A clear foul on Wendell Carter Jr was challenged by the Celtics. Video clearly showed contact but the on-court decision was overturned. That denied Orlando two free-throws for an 8 point lead, handing possession to Boston who promptly cut the Magic lead to 4.
The last two seasons have seen the Magic swept 3-0 by Boston on each occasion. This was a marked turnaround from the 2018-19 season when Orlando swept Boston 3-0. However prior to that success the Magic had lost 7 of the 8 previous meetings, with the Celtics then also holding a six game winning streak.
In playoffs the Celtics and Magic have met in 3 series, playing 17 games. Orlando are up 2-1 in series and 9-8 in games. In 2010 the Celtics won 4-2 in the Eastern Conference Finals. 2009 saw Orlando win the Eastern Conference Semi-Finals, taking the series 4-3. In 1995 Orlando had won the series 3-1 in the first round of the playoffs.
Our Opponents – The Boston Celtics
The Boston Celtics are led by first year Head Coach Ime Udoka, who spent last season as an assistant coach for the Brooklyn Nets.
They are a patient team offensively but shooting effectively has been the season difficulty. However, on defence the Celtics remain hard-nosed and elite. Defence of the paint is where they build from, playing with grit and determination we all associate with the team. Rim protection is an area of huge efficiency, being a league leader for both rebounding and shot blocking.
Starting Unit – Jaylen Brown (PG), Marcus Smart (SG), Al Horford (PF), Jayson Tatum (SF), Robert Williams III (C)
Bench Unit – Dennis Schroeder, Josh Richardson, Grant Williams, Aaron Nesmith, Romeo Langford, Payton Pritchard, Bruno Fernando, Enes Freedom
For Boston Bol Bol is out injured long term, as is PJ Dozier.
The Orlando Magic Injury Report
As I write there has not been any update from the Magic. Feel free to skip ahead as there is no change here.
ESPN continues to show 5 absences:
RJ Hampton is out with a left knee injury.
Markelle Fultz is out indefinitely with no public timeline for his return.
E’Twaun Moore remains out with a sprained left knee.
Michael Carter-Williams is out after surgery to repair his left ankle ligament.
Jonathan Isaac continues to be out as he rehabilitates the repaired left knee. There remains no public timeline for his return to the court.
The Magic Lineup As The Boston Celtics Come To Orlando
Last night Coach Mosely openly withdrew players he felt were not giving enough to the cause. He is however unlikely to move away from his favoured rotations.
Magic Starting Lineup – Cole Anthony (PG), Jalen Suggs (SG), Franz Wagner (SF), Wendell Carter Jr (PF), Mo Bamba (C)
Magic Bench Unit – Gary Harris, Terrence Ross, Chuma Okeke, Moe Wagner, Admiral Schofield, Robin Lopez, Ignas Brazdeikis
Some Final Thoughts As The Boston Celtics Come To Orlando
The Magic have to react to a very much sub-par performance. The team will need to engage to their tasks on the defensive end, a failing throughout the Memphis game last night.
Offensively another improvement from Cole Anthony to his earlier season form would be a huge help to the team getting a victory.
These teams have been closely matched in both games this season. Keeping on top of Jayson Tatum is a must to keep it that way. Tatum has taken the most shots in the NBA this season, having attempted 1046 shots. He has also missed the most shots in the NBA, failing on 596 of those efforts. Keeping him off the free throw line will be important, him being sixth in both free throws attempted and made.
It is time to break that losing streak to Boston.
Lets Go Magic!