WDBO Sports Director Scott Anez has seen, or listened to, every Orlando Magic game ever played! A local boy who graduated from Lake Brantley High School and UCF, Scott began his career by covering the Magic's inaugural season in 1989 and he is known as the Voice of the Magic Fan in Orlando. This is Scott's 18th season hosting AM 580 WDBO's Inside Magic, the highest rated sports talk show in Orlando. He also serves as Broadcast Host for the Orlando Magic Radio Network. Scott shares his unique take on what's happening at Two Magic Place and beyond with ANEZ SEZ. Read more of Scott's previous blogs at the Anez Sez archive or at http://580wdbo.com.
Posted by Scott Anez, Wednesday, Feb. 9, 2011, 11:45 AM
What’s Otis Gonna Do This Year?
I remember a couple of years ago—about this time of the NBA season—we living in Magic Nation were pretty much resigned to the fact that our Magic would be bounced from the playoffs early.
Sure, our record was outstanding. On Feb. 2, the Magic were cruising at 36-10.
That same day vs. Dallas though, starting point guard, Jameer Nelson suffered what was thought to be a season-ending dislocated shoulder.
At that point, I think we were all resigned to the fact that, while the Magic had showed promise, we weren’t going anywhere without our leader, catalyst and NBA All Star point guard.
Then, two and a half weeks later (Feb. 19), GM Otis Smith pulled off a surprising 11th hour, three-team trade at the deadline—getting point guard Rafer Alston from the Houston Rockets.
It was a deal that didn’t make huge waves throughout the NBA—but as it turned out-- it was a deal that propelled the Orlando Magic to the 2009 NBA Finals.
A caller into WDBO’s Inside Magic asked earlier this week: What is Otis gonna do this year to catch Miami and Boston atop the Eastern Conference?
When you look back upon that move to get Rafer at the deadline, we caught lightning in a bottle. At the time, the Magic needed a dish-first point guard who could come in and run the show. Rafer was a perfect fit. He distributed the ball and got out of the way of Dwight, Turk and Rashard.
What does this team need this year to kick it up a notch this year?
I think we need more time.
Sure…I do believe that this team desperately needs a backup center. Dwight is playing way too many minutes right now and when Superman does sit, opponents are feasting at the rim on both sides of the court.
Problem is…No one’s gonna give up a quality big for, say a Quentin Richardson and or a Chris Duhon.
In short, I think Otis already made his deadline moves back on December 18 when he acquired Hedo, Gilbert, J-Rich and Earl Clark.
I haven’t counted….but I’d be willing to wager that this team, since the mega-trades, has practiced together only a handful of times. You can’t make that many changes on a team and expect things to click right away. See the Miami Heat. It took them a while even with a full training camp under their belts.
Yes, we were all spoiled back in ’09 when Rafer came in and took the Magic to the NBA Finals.
This is not ’09.
But, there are 29 games to go to build more cohesion.
The Magic have a seven game home stand on the way—a little less than a month without leaving the state of Florida--a time to get some practice time in and to get more comfortable with the surroundings.
Plus, Brandon Bass will be back soon to man his starting power forward position again.
What is Otis gonna do this year?
I think the best thing he can do right now is to give this team some much needed time.
Anez Sez is solely the opinion of Scott Anez and does not reflect the views of the Orlando Magic or the NBA.
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