Savage from the Sideline: Magic at Heat (12/18/11)

By Dan Savage
December 18, 2011


MIAMI -- It’s hard to imagine anyone went to bed on Sunday night feeling great about the Magic’s performance in their 118-85 road loss to the Miami Heat.

Orlando was simply out-shot, out-hustled and out-played in the second half as the Heat outscored the Magic by 26 points after halftime.

But it’s important to keep one thing in perspective: It’s the first game of the preseason!

Heading into the matchup, Orlando had won 21 straight preseason contests. And you what it got for that accomplishment?

Nope, not a banner. If you guessed trophy, sorry you’re wrong. A Medal? That’s incorrect; please try again.

All the Magic received for 21 straight preseason victories, we’re a few positive lines in Orlando’s pregame media notebook.

“We had won 21 straight exhibition games and have yet to win a championship,” J.J. Redick explained. “So in the scheme of things (tonight’s loss only) matters if we learn and improve from this.”

And believe me, if Stan Van Gundy has his way, the Magic will learn from this loss over and over again in every practice prior to Wednesday’s final preseason matchup at Amway Center.

In some ways, the Magic’s head coach probably prefers a defeat like this during the exhibition season, because it makes it easier to hammer home his points.

“Quite honestly, this is good for us,” Van Gundy said. “Hopefully it’s a wakeup call for everybody that you can’t go into practice in the week to come and keep doing things the way you’ve been doing them. It’s not going to be good enough. You got embarrassed out here. So you move on and you have to get better.”

So if you’re standing on a ledge after that defeat, take a few steps back. Remember, this is the first time the Magic have played a game together in about seven months.



Stan Van Gundy
“Do you really need me to get a take on that one? If you guys can’t figure that one out, then you are in the wrong business.” WATCH VIDEO

Dwight Howard
“We have to stick together. I told the guys, we’re in this together. We’re not going to go left or go right, we’re going to stay on the path to winning a championship.” WATCH VIDEO

Quentin Richardson
“I’m a competitor, I don’t want to lose a pick-up game by 40. I don’t want to lose to anyone that bad.” WATCH VIDEO



"So glad NBA is back! #GoMagic" - @OctaneBaby

"JJ, J-Rich and Anderson were good. Jameer's shot will come. Too many people focused on the negatives." - Luke Bush

Message Boards
"Scoring 85 points with both our captains going 2-19 or something is fine by me. The first quarter looked like we had an excellent half court offense. It was more than just regular pick and rolls and I enjoyed seeing that." - Mr13A

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