The Orlando Magic enter the All-Star Break with a big game against the Detroit Pistons and a chance to enter the break with a comfortable playoff lead and a win streak.
Detroit Pistons (19-37) vs. Orlando Magic (23-31)
Time/TV: 7 p.m./FOX Sports Florida
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Tickets: $10-$310 on StubHub
2020 Season Series: Pistons 103, Magic 88 in Detroit on Nov. 23; Tonight in Orlando; March 17 in Detroit
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Things have changed a lot for the Detroit Pistons since the last time these two teams met. For one, Andre Drummond was shipped to the Cleveland Cavaliers and Blake Griffin is nursing an injury. The Pistons essentially called it a season and turned around their hopes for the playoffs. Detroit has lost all three games since the trade deadline and did not hit 95 points in two of those games. This one could get ugly. The Magic’s defense is not quite the juggernaut they want it to be. But they should be able to control the game some. Containing Reggie Jackson will be the biggest key as will be locking down the glass with the dynamic Christian Wood and Thon Maker’s size (a John Hammond draft pick!). If the Magic have the same groove as they did Monday, they should win.
1) The Orlando Magic are feeling some confidence and feeling good after an offensive outburst as they look to build momentum heading into the All-Star Break, Roy Parry of the Orlando Sentinel writes. The Magic hope they can build upon that performance, John Denton of OrlandoMagic.com writes.
2) The Orlando Magic found their flow offensively Monday and the question is now how do they do it again and again.
3) Josh Robbins of The Athletic sits down with Orlando Magic president of basketball operations Jeff Weltman after the trade deadline to help assess where the Magic stand.
4) The Orlando Magic have to make the most of themselves if they are going to make the most of this season.
5) The Orlando Magic need their best players to perform and lift everyone up to get out of this rut and push forward.
6) With Reggie Jackson as a potential buyout candidate, Aaron Ferguson of Piston Powered examines how the buyout market could affect the Detroit Pistons.
7) The Orlando Magic are likely only to have the mid-level exception available to them this summer with a big question surrounding Evan Fournier and his decision to opt-in or out of the final year of his contract, John Hollinger of The Athletic writes.
8) Detroit Pistons coach Dwane Casey is concerned with rookie Sekou Doumbouya and it goes beyond his shooting slump, Vince Ellis of the Detroit Free Press writes.
9) The Detroit Pistons expect 100-percent effort from Thon Maker on every play now that playing time has opened up for the young big man, Lauren Williams of MLive.com writes.
10) Like the Orlando Magic, the Detroit Pistons scoring woes are not from a lack of effort, Lauren Williams of MLive.com writes.
11) James Ennis is trying to get ahead by being a bit selfish and allowing the move to the Orlando Magic where he could get some playing time.
12) James Ennis’ energy was a big reason why the Orlando Magic defeated the Atlanta Hawks and is exactly what he hopes to provide the Magic, Josh Robbins of The Athletic writes.
13) Garrett Townsend of Orlando Pinstriped Post breaks down what James Ennis brings to the Orlando Magic.
14) Brandon Knight is one of the elder statesmen now as he returns to the Detroit Pistons for a second stint, Keith Langlois of Pistons.com writes.
15) Orlando Magic executives pitched the team’s playoff potential for their quiet trade deadline.
16) The Orlando Magic held onto Nikola Vucevic after the trade deadline, but undeniably the team is seeing the conditions form that might one day soon lead him to a trade, Spencer Henderson writes.
17) The Orlando Magic still have plenty of assets to play with in the offseason. Our ranking of the Magic’s trade assets.
18) The conditions for the Orlando Magic to make a meaningful trade did not form at the trade deadline this year.
19) The Orlando City Council approved a sale of land near the Amway Center the Orlando Magic intend to turn into a new practice facility. There are undoubtedly big plans to keep up in the NBA’s facilities arms race, Josh Robbins of The Athletic reports.
20) The Book of Basketball 2.0 podcast with Bill Simmons dives into the career of Dwight Howard and places him within the Basketball Pyramid.
21) Blake Stackpool of Piston Powered breaks down Memphis Tigers big man James Wiseman as the Detroit Pistons turn an eye toward the draft.