Denton: Magic vs. Mavericks Analysis (1/13/14)

   

By John Denton
Jan. 13, 2014

DALLAS – The one-sided final score resembled many of the others before it, but for a stretch of Monday night’s second half the Orlando Magic looked like a well-oiled machine and seemed to be every bit the equals of the veteran-laden Dallas Mavericks.

The Magic ran their offense with a distinct crispness to find hot hands and set up open looks. They took the life out of an opposing arena and, for a change, forced the other team into an emergency timeout. And, for a while at least, Orlando got a string of defensive stops and seemed poised to grab control of the game.

Ultimately, none of that lasted beyond the midpoint the third quarter, leading to a 107-88 Magic loss to the Mavericks at American Airlines Arena. But for a depleted Orlando team looking for something to cling to and believe in, the spirited run just after halftime gives it hope of brighter days ahead.

The Magic’s next goal: Make the positive spurts last much longer than just a six-minute stretch and turn the losses into victories that the team can build upon.

``We got stops and an opportunity to run and we were able to run our offense against their transition defense instead of a set defense. We got layups and found the open guy and made the right play,’’ Magic point guard Jameer Nelson said. ``I keep it’s a process to winning and this is part of the process. This is a stepping stone and we’re not going to learn this stuff overnight. Over the last few weeks we’ve gotten better in some areas. Now, we just have to put a full game together.’’

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