Bloglando Magic

A blog primarily focused on the Orlando Magic?

Monday, July 14, 2008

Take a chance, Otis.

I was looking through the NBA headlines today at ESPN.COM, and I came across one in particular that interested me:

"Artest hopes for trade from Kings, will act as own agent."

As a fan of the Orlando Magic, this didn't interest me because I want the Magic to trade for Artest; we already have Turkoglu and Lewis as small forwards who at times are forced to play out of position, no need to have another small forward swapped in for one of them to play out of position.

This interested me because the article stated that the front-runner for Artest appears to be the Lakers. The Lakers, as in the same guys that last year made a big trade to get Pau Gasol. This trade would give them Gasol, Bryan, Bynum, and Artest in the starting lineup.

Of course, this may never even happen. What upsets me is that it is conceivable. And realistic.

And why is that a problem?

The Magic just seem afraid to think so big. A starting lineup of Howard, Lewis, Turkoglu, Pietrus(???), and Nelson will NEVER win an NBA championship. In fact, I am willing to state that it will never win a conference championship, either. Last year, I was content to see Lewis and Turk start together. It was better than what we had, and Turkoglu really proved himself this year. But, that doesn't mean we can't improve. In fact, I wouldn't even mind seeing Turk at the off guard spot if we can pull in a new, legit power forward, and not Tony Battie. Though I do say he is definitely a legit backup, he is NOT a championship caliber starter.

We have redundancy in skills between Lewis and Turkoglu in the regard that we have two 6'10" guys who are better suited to perimeter play than to banging inside. Neither are rebounders.

And that is ok. That is their game. What is not OK is that we maxed out with them in the lineup together last year. Why aren't we being named in trade rumors? We need either a good solid power forward with a mid-range game and solid rebounding skills, or a better shooting guard than Pietrus.

The obvious candidate for trade is Turk. I love Turk, and I love what he did, but let's face it- he is worth more now than he probably ever will be, and this is his last year under contract. Let's work out a sign and trade for one of the free agents or another player.

Elton Brand was out there. Missed him. Maggette was out there. Missed him. We are sitting back on our laurels signing mediocre players while the rest of the league is stockpiling legitimate starters. Look at the Lakers and Celtics, and tell me honestly we can compete with either of those teams with our roster.

We can't.

At least go out and figure out a way to get Vasquez over here already. He has said he wants to come. Make it happen. Take a chance SOMEwhere.

And don't trade away Reddick. Please. I am sick of seeing talented players on the Magic roster not get a chance with us before proving themselves with another team. (see: Maggette, Billups, Wallace, and now Ariza. And that is a short list. Let's not even talk about the players we didn't draft that we could have. . .) The Magic have to be one of THE worst organizations in the league when it comes to developing and/or recognizing young talent on its own roster.

The Magic are going to have to take some real chances and make some REAL moves if they are ever going to get beyond the conference semis. Why? Because thats what champions do. Just ask the Lakers and The Celtics. Last summer, Danny Ainge could have been content with the addition of Ray Allen, but he wasn't. He went and also added KG. The Lakers could have been content with waiting for Bynum to come back from injury and help them this year, but they weren't. They also added Gasol. The winners win more because they work to win. The losers continue to lose because they fail to think like winners; they just want to stop losing. Otis needs to start taking some real chances, and shoot for the moon if he wants to play with the big dogs in the NBA. He started to when he signed Rashard, but that move alone simply is not enough.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008


The NBA finals are just starting, and all I can think about is next fall, and Fran Vasquez.

Friday, November 2, 2007

Brighthouse won't carry FSN. . . who is to blame?

This year the Orlando Magic decided to let FSN carry the home games. Only problem? The local cable company doesn't carry FSN. Who is at fault?
The Magic organization should have had a bit more foresight and done a bit more work prior to agreeing to a deal with FSN, and had done they done so while communicating with Brighthouse, things might be different now. I think now Brighthouse feels "forced" to add in FSN. When it all comes down to it. . . it makes no sense that other markets would get FSN included, and ours does not. Why would we be any different? Only because Brighthouse is playing hardball. Just make our package comparable to that of other sports cities. . . Brighthouse is ultimately at fault for treating us differently. I took the liberty of checking other markets that Brighthouse services that are sports markets. Detroit carries FSN in its basic cable package. Indianapolis carries FSN. Bakersfield, California carries FSN. Birmingham carries FSN. Tampa- our neighbors- get FSN. And when I say these places get FSN, I mean, it is included as part of their standard cable packages. This is all available to see at I find it ridiculous that these other markets would get FSN and we would be denied it, especially now that our only hometown team has taken up residence on the network. If anything, Brighthouse should be giving it to us without being begged, as a show of how dedicated they are to serving a city of Orlando that clearly showed they support the Orlando Magic when they approved the arena deal. I don't know how often it is a cable carrier gets their market research done for them via public vote. . .

Thursday, October 25, 2007


The preseason is not even over yet, but I wanted to highlight something I have noticed: The Magic may have upgraded going from Darko Milicic to Adonal Foyle:
Not only has Adonal not gone on any profanity laden tirades, he also appears to be doing much better statistically, too.
Here are their per 40 minute averages for the preseason, so far:
Adonal Foyle
16.6 points
2.3 blocks
13.2 rebounds
57.1 fg%

Darko Milicic
9.6 points
2.8 blocks
8.5 rebounds
35.4 fg%

Granted, this is the preseason, but the difference there is pretty noticeable. I don't think there is a GM in the league that would take Darko over Adonal based upon those numbers, unless maybe he was already stacked with veterans in the middle and could afford to gamble on Darko's potential.
I will be honest, I do believe Darko has potential. It isn't just a matter of if he has the ability, it is a question of if he can tap into his ability. Mentally, I am not sure if he can pull it together. I really think the guy is a headcase. I hope I am wrong. . . but if you have viewed the transcript of that he said about those FIBA refs and their families. . . well, you wouldn't want him around your family.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Jameer jealous?

"It's been hard to get back to sleep and get used to U.S. time again, but that's why they pay some of us the big bucks,' said Nelson, obviously referencing the fact he's yet to sign a contract extension with the Magic. 'We're athletes, and really we're not normal human beings. We're expected to do things most people can't do. Whether we're tired or not, we have to get back out there and perform to the best of our abilities."*
Yeah, I guess they do pay "some of you" the big bucks, huh? I would be willing to travel to China and sit on an NBA bench for free! Or maybe just $100,000 a year. I would be such a bargain. And great for bench-energy.

*quoted from John Denton at (probably the best source for Orlando Magic news on the net)

Friday, October 19, 2007

Speaking of Wang. . .

From Hollinger's column at
"• Van Gundy offered effusive, unsolicited praise for China's Wang Zhizhi, which given that a) Wang played for Van Gundy in Miami, and b) Orlando has a glaring need for another frontcourt player, certainly raised an eyebrow or too. "I enjoyed seeing Wang Zhizhi again," said Van Gundy, who added that the two exchanged gifts. "He's a very good player and a great, great person. I hope our paths will cross again some time.'"
Let it be. . .

New Season, Fresh Start!

And all that jazz.
A new season is nearly upon us and so I have decided to revive the old Orlando Magic blog (after cleaning some things up, etc.) and start fresh (close enough.)
Right now I am watching the Orlando Magic take on the "China All Stars"- you gotta love DVR and having NBA TV. This brought to mind a few thoughts:
  1. Does a 7 foot tall man with the name, "Wang" get made fun of much in an American locker room?
  2. A Chinese locker room?
  3. How is it that Wang Zhizhi is better than Yi Jianlan and gives Yao a run for his money with the Chinese National team, yet could not cut it in the NBA?
  4. How can a player be as inconsistent as Hedo Turkoglu?
Now don' t get me wrong- I love Hedo. There are few players in the NBA whose name opens the door to more puns than Hedo Turkoglu's, and to an English nerd such as myself that is just plain fantastic. The problem is, the guy kind of reminds me of a crazy ex-girlfriend: up one day, down the next, mysterious illnesses, never quite living up to your hopes and expectations. I think even once knew a girl who claimed to have Turkoflu (which Healtho claims he is no longer stricken with.) The guy will go off one night, shoot 10-15, and then the next night hit 2-6. It is remarkably rare for him to put together two solid games in a row. It is such a tease to see the guy shoot the lights out one night, and bomb the next.
The reason I bring all this up is I have been watching him closely. I really think either Hedo or JJ Reddick needs to be a consistent third option this season for the Magic to be anything more than an average team. Sure, Rashard is supposedly a reliable scoring option, and Dwight seems to have added some jump shooting to his repertoire ( do you think JJ gave him a free copy of his instructional video? ), but there are going to be plenty of nights where Dwight gets himself in foul trouble being over-eager on defense, and/or Rashard's shot just is not falling. I don't even think Tim Donaghy (or MJ for that matter) would take odds on Turkofluke's shot falling on those nights when needed most. (by the way, I just watched Hedo miss two free throws, his new name is Hedo Chokeoglu. Or maybe Freethrow Chokeoglu if you're really reaching.)
I relent. I actually have a real soft spot for Hedo, he is one of my favorite players. I constantly read other people saying that he should be trade-bait to pull in a legit power forward or shooting guard to augment the Magic's perceived weakness at each of these positions, but I am content with a potential starting lineup of Dwight at center, Rashard and Hedo at the forward positions, Jameer at point, and JJ/ Ariza/ Bogans at guard, at least at this point. JJ and Ariza are both young prospects who still have the potential to breakout.
This actually reminds me of another thing about Hedo: people say the guy cannot defend. I don't buy into that. I have watched him defend some pretty impressive players one on one and hold his own.
I suppose only the start of the regular season will tell, but at this point I like Hedo as a third option for this team- if he can pull it together. If not, I say we sign Wang Zhizhi so I have a different person's name to make fun of. Actually. . . that isn't a bad idea. Could he be a worse option off the bench than James Augustine (guy looks serious nervous when he gets on the floor- like Anthony Avent nervous) and Marcin Gortat?