Magic success to continue versus Pistons?

Essentials

  • Teams: Orlando Magic (14-26) at Detroit Pistons (15-25)
  • Date: January 22, 2013
  • Time: 7:30 p.m.
  • Television: FS Detroit Plus

What to look for

Entering tonight, the Orlando Magic have lost back-to-back games against the Charlotte Bobcats and Dallas Mavericks and will be looking to bounce back this evening when they take on the Detroit Pistons.

Jacque Vaughn’s group has been victorious against Lawrence Frank’s twice this season already; with both games having completely separate identities.

The first contest in mid- November proved to be a shootout as evidenced by the teams scoring a combined 216 points. Orlando was a little better, as they stretched the court with their shooting — they converted seven of their 17 attempts from downtown — and simply dominated the rebounding battle. Indeed, the Magic finished the contest with a 44-30 rebounding edge as well as 14 offensive rebounds.

The second game occurred in Orlando less than a week later and was a tough defensive battle in which both teams struggled from the field and points came at a premium. Orlando grinded out a double-digit victory by making a few more shots than their opponents.

Both teams devised better strategies the second time around to make the game a little ugly; and the Magic flexed their muscles on the interior and held Detroit to 16-for-29 shooting (55.2 percent) right at the rim per Hoopdata.

Not so coincidentally, the Orlando Magic have won the battle on the boards in the previous two games, and have been victorious in both instances. Needless to say, this area will go a long way towards determining the winner tonight.

Glen Davis in particular has been a menacing player on this front, averaging 13.5 rebounds per game against the Pistons this season, as well as 4.5 offensive boards.

While focusing on Big Baby, it will be important to pay particular attention to J.J. Redick because he has hurt Detroit this season. On November 16th, he came off screens and also took advantage of a rotating defense to score 23 points on 13 shot attempts.

On November 21st, with Detroit keying in on him a little more when coming off screens and daring him to put the ball on the floor, he struggled from the field but did a good job of creating scoring opportunities for his teammates and dished off seven assists in their comfortable double-digit victory.

The Pistons will have their work cut out for them tonight when they take on the Orlando Magic in what has been a one sided feud so far this season. However, Detroit will get a chance to strike back tonight and will travel to face Orlando one last time on January 27th. But if they plan on tying up the season series, they have to start with a victory tonight.

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Tags: Orlando Magic THN-ORL