5 questions the Orlando Magic must answer in final quarter of the season

The Orlando Magic are struggling to get their swagger back as the playoff race tightens. (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)
The Orlando Magic are struggling to get their swagger back as the playoff race tightens. (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images) /
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Markelle Fultz, Orlando Magic
Markelle Fultz’s thrilling first half of the season is already drawing comparisons to the Orlando Magic’s best players. (Photo by Fernando Medina/NBAE via Getty Images) /

Have the Orlando Magic found their offense at last?

The early part of the Orlando Magic’s season was filled with frustration. Really the whole part of the season was filled with frustration.

No matter what the team did, it could not get its offense moving. It could not get its shots to go in consistently even when the offense worked to get open shots. That has been a repeated problem throughout the course of the season. One that has had no easy answers.

Nobody expected the Magic to have a killer offense. Coach Steve Clifford said the goal for the team to have a successful season was to be in the top five in defense (they are currently 10th) and in the top-half offensively.

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That is the part that has not quite come to fruition. Not anywhere close. The Magic’s offense has been nearly abysmal. And it will always have moments — and lineups — that do not quite work well together.

But things are not all bad. In fact, it feels like things are starting to look up for the Magic offensively.

Orlando, after spending most of the season in 28th or 29th in offensive rating, are now up to 25th. The Magic score 106.7 points per 100 possessions. That is more than the Atlanta Hawks for the entire season actually (the Hawks have picked things up recently).

In the last 15 games, the Magic are 19th in the league with 111.3 points per 100 possessions. The team is not scorching the earth, but it does feel like the team is getting closer to its potential as an offensive team.

Terrence Ross has been on a tear since the All-Star Break, giving the team a much-needed spark. Evan Fournier has picked up his shooting too after a midseason swoon. The Magic are starting to put at least some things together.

If the Magic were playing defense at the level they were playing at in November and much of December, this would be a really dangerous team. A lot of Orlando’s offensive problems come from having to play in the half-court so much.

The Magic have to have some faith their defense will right the ship. Especially with the opponents coming up. It no longer feels like a struggle to reach 100 — or even 110 — points on most nights. That should be more than enough for this team to win.

That is if this offensive spark continues.