Orlando Magic Playbook: Orlando Magic trying to get their defensive mentality back

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Mixed results

To this point, noting it is preseason, the Orlando Magic have given up 108.0 points per 100 possessions. That is in the bottom-10 in the league for the preseason. But it is still preseason. So every stat should come with some grain of salt.

More likely you will see plays like the one above. Where a few players maybe are not in the right position or not fully engaged defensively — in this case, it is Evan Fournier who is slow to cover Kevin Huerter.

But someone else on the team is able to recover and make a defensive play. Just a little increase in effort goes a long way.

The Orlando Magic have had some good moments defensively for sure — the team gave up 105.8 points per 100 possessions in the second half of Thursday’s game against the Charlotte Hornets. The team had some long stretches of solid defense where they got down and defended well to get stops and clean things up.

"“We definitely have spurts and segments where we are playing together,” Terrence Ross said after Thursday’s game. “I think the biggest thing for us is our defense. The defense is going to be the thing that charges us offensively. It’s going to make the offensive game easier. “I think that’s what we’re kind of understanding. We have stretches where we play good defense. It’s finding the intensity to maintain and have that defensive intensity the whole game and run the pressure up on the other team and take the pressure off on ourselves. We have to better understand how we play. But it’s coming along, I think we’ll get there.”"

In the preseason though it just has not been long or consistent enough.