Magic Radio producer Jake Chapman spends hours on end alone in his studio. If that’s not depressing enough, he regularly talks to himself. Jake’s Take is an aggregate of his ramblings, musings, and occasionally coherent thoughts.

Posted by Jake Chapman, Tuesday, January 29, 2013, 12:45 PM

Rainy Days

“They want rain without thunder and lightning. They want the ocean without the awful roar of its many waters.”

Frederick Douglass said that. Not sure if he was referring to Magic fans, but I’m gonna go with “yes.”

So here we sit. A promising start to the season has given way to a brutal stretch as we approach the all-star break; 17 losses in 19 contests, injury woes across the roster and significant trade buzz surrounding an all-time Magic fan-favorite. The writing was on the wall as early as a year ago in fact, the trade-me/trade-me-not charade foreshadowed a period of change and turnover for the Magic’s basketball operation.

But as Magic fans all we can ask for is effort and dedication, and Jacque Vaughn’s team is nothing if not dedicated.

Watch Nik Vucevic outlast the game’s best centers for 2, 3 or 4 tip-ins before converting.

Watch Arron Afflalo fight through screens on the perimeter.

Watch young Maurice Harkless’ jump-shot develop, the product of months of practice with his coaches.

Watch Glen Davis tumble to the floor for a loose ball, his 290-pound frame shaking the very foundation of the Amway Center.

Watch JJ Redick play basketball. Period.

These are tangible, graspable displays of effort and passion that shouldn’t be ignored. Teams across the league have begun mailing it in. It’s just about February, that time when your roster “is what it is” and you’re either headed for the postseason, headed for the golf course, or headed for a blockbuster deal before the Feb. 21 trade deadline.

This is when teams give up. And while Coach Vaughn’s team could be forgiven for going through the motions, playing out the string and looking toward next season, the young head coach won’t allow it, and his roster wouldn’t dare try it.

There will be smooth sailing eventually, but for now let’s appreciate what the ocean has to offer, despite its awful roar.