Denton: Magic-Raptors Postgame Analysis
By John Denton
April 3, 2011
WHAT WENT RIGHT
Howard had three dunks in the first half and avoided getting in foul trouble against Evans, who has given the Magic’s star center trouble in the past with his flopping defensively. Howard had no trouble converting inside, once backing Evans down for a dunk and converting baskets three times early on as he was fouled.
But the game went sideways for the Magic early in the fourth quarter when Howard went to the bench for a rest. The Magic led 81-73, but crumbled when the Raptors routinely attacked the rim with the two-time Defensive Player of the Year resting on the bench.
``It’s a little ridiculous that we can’t even let Dwight get a drink of water, but that’s the way that it is,’’ Van Gundy fumed. ``When he leaves we have no defense and today we had very little defense. It’s crazy, but we should be able to take him out to get a drink of water.’’
WHAT WENT WRONG
Richardson had three 3-pointers, but he struggled defensively throughout the game. In his 43 minutes on the floor, the Magic were outscored by 22 points.
Orlando’s reserves – what’s left of them at least – were outscored 34-9. Ryan Anderson (six points) and Quentin Richardson (three points) combined for three 3-pointers, but neither was on the floor for long. Earl Clark is no longer in the rotation and Malik Allen struggled trying to fill in for Howard at center.
``I don’t have an answer to that question right now,’’ Redick said when asked when he might return. ``After my time in Vancouver I realize that I can’t target a date or pinpoint a date because I was doing that before and it just led to more and more disappointment.
``The frustration right now is very high,’’ Redick continued. ``I’ve missed a good chunk of the season and the important time leading up to the playoffs. I expect myself to be as sharp as possible when I do return – whenever that is.’’
Howard did not commit a foul over the final 8 minutes, 10 seconds of Wednesday’s game in Atlanta. He played 38 minutes against Charlotte on Friday without committing a foul. And on Sunday, he made it the first half without picking up a personal foul. His streak finally ended with 7:42 left in the third period when DeRozan threw his body into Howard as he was having his shot blocked and he was bailed out by the foul call.