The top 10 individual Orlando Magic season performances

Shaquille O'Neal stands tall over every figure in Orlando Magic history. (Photo credit should read TONY RANZE/AFP via Getty Images)
Shaquille O'Neal stands tall over every figure in Orlando Magic history. (Photo credit should read TONY RANZE/AFP via Getty Images) /
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Scott Skiles, Orlando Magic
What Scott Skiles lacked in skill sometimes, he made up for in grit. And he sure knew how to rack up assists for the Orlando Magic. (Photo by Focus on Sport/Getty Images) /

8.  1991 Scott Skiles

Per Game Table
1990-91 26 79 66 34.4 .445 .408 .489 .902 3.4 8.4 1.1 17.2

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The image of Scott Skiles most fans have is of the gritty and tough point guard who was not afraid to challenge Shaquille O’Neal to a fight when it called for. That is what defined Scott Skiles and endeared him to Magic fans in the early years.

But he was a whole lot more than that. In winning the 1991 Most Improved Player Award, Skiles established himself as one of the tentpoles of early magic history.

Skiles took over the starting role in 1991, averaging 17.2 points per game with an astounding 8.4 assists.

Almost averaging a double-double per game, Skiles was known for a couple of things. Namely, not missing any shots — and what shots he did miss were probably from him driving in for a layup wildly at 20 miles per hour which often made for a good highlight. His motor never stopped.

With a 5-22 start, the Magic were lost early in the year.

In that 22nd loss of the season, Skiles gave one of his finest performances in the loss to John Stockton and Karl Malone of the Utah Jazz. He had his season-high 34 points against them as Orlando fell 104-96. The Magic matched the Jazz for three quarters but faded in the fourth.

They played close to .500 ball the rest of the season after the bad start, but would ultimately go on to lose a total of 51 games.

But the 1991 season saw Skiles put together the game that is his claim to fame.

December 30, 1990:  Skiles set the NBA record for assists in this season at 30 against the Denver Nuggets. Really this alone gets my vote for a place in the top 10. Appreciate this great assist montage put together here from that night. You have gotta love how the announcers and fans gradually catch on to what is happening, oh it is real:

Legend has it also Skiles could be found shooting hoops at Sanlando Park in Altamonte Springs during these years. He was very approachable and was known not to miss on the playground. Ever. Three after three.

Skiles never quite reached the heights he did individually in the 1991 season again. He averaged 15.4 points and 9.1 assists per game in the 1993 season. Pretty soon, the Magic would find a superstar to take over at point guard.