RECAP: Detroit 98, Orlando 94
Quote of the night: "Have you ever seen the movie 'Groundhog Day' -- it is the same story over and over," Orlando coach Stan Van Gundy said. "I told them late that either we were going to change things against this team or we weren't. All three games this year have been winnable, and we haven't gotten them. Last year in the playoffs, we each had a blowout, and three games went to the wire, and they won them all."
Ugh. Just when it looked like that Magic would break through and beat both Boston and Detroit on the same road trip they ran into a brick wall. His name? Kwame Brown?!?! This is really a tough one to swallow. When Rasheed went down with an injury early in the game, it looked like the Magic would have a serious advantage down low. But along came Kwame. The former No. 1 overall pick played well, scoring 10 points and grabbing four rebounds in 26 minutes of action. Brown also did a more than adequate job boxing out Dwight Howard, while also playing some pretty good defense. Brown's play enabled Antonio McDyess to kill the Magic on the boards for the second time this season. McDyess finished with 18 rebounds, seven of them coming on the offensive end. On a positive note, Dwight continues to have success at the free throw line, converting on 9-of-13 attempts. But his two big misses with less than two minutes left and the Magic down one at 91-90 sure didn't help. All-in-all it was another impressive game for Dwight, as he finished with 27 points, 14 rebounds and four blocks. As a team the Magic shot 29-of-35 from the line and had 18 assists on their 29 converted field goals. Detroit had some very impressive numbers show up in the final box score. The Pistons had just seven turnovers, compared to 15 for the Magic. Detroit also had 30 assists on its 40 converted field goal attempts. Richard Hamilton also continued his Magic-killing ways, scoring 29 points while dishing out 14 assists and blocking three shots. As I've said before, the Magic have got to find away to slow down other team's opposing shooting guards. I think it could ultimately be the team's downfall in the playoffs, especially against a team like Miami or Detroit. In off the court notes, does anyone else hate the public address announcer for the Pistons? I honestly dread listing to him a-a-a-a-a-a-announce in the background. I understand that most announcers have the shtick, but his routine just gets annoying.