The Orlando Magic take on the Indiana Pacers in an Eastern Conference showdown on Tuesday in Orlando, Fla.
The first two games for the Magic have seen them average 130 points per game, something we could have never thought possible in the first part of the year. A defensive-oriented team, the Magic do have a few scorers but usually win by simply getting more stops when it matters.
We’ll see if they can give Indiana the same treatment they gave to both Brooklyn and Sacramento, making it rain all game long. A 3-0 start would go a long way toward helping them secure the seventh seed in the East.
Indiana’s TJ Warren is proving to everybody that didn’t pay attention to him before just how good he is. He opened with a 53-point performance against Philadelphia and followed it up with a 34-point, 11-rebound game against the Wizards. He is just the player the Pacers have been missing and could have used last year.
As Indiana is without some of its top guys, everybody has to step up. And through their first two games, that has been the case for them. Great to see.
The Pacers are set as two-point favorites for the matchup.
Orlando Looking to Stay Hot
Despite the 2-0 start, there is a lot of pessimism surrounding this Magic team, now. Jonathan Isaac, who has been oft-injured in his NBA career, suffered another catastrophic injury in their last game. On a drive to the rim, he planted funny and wound up tearing his ACL as a result. His comeback effort was for naught.
Isaac hadn’t been starting but was playing a key role off the bench. This will mean more minutes for James Ennis and a consistent backup role for Wes Iwundu.
This is a Magic team that is set for a second straight playoff trip but will have to play without their promising young forward now, and likely for the entirety of next season.
Isaac would have been the one to check Warren, so that burden likely falls to Ennis and perhaps Michael Carter-Williams now. Let’s see how they can respond.
Indiana Looking to Keep it Rolling
While the Pacers’ win over Philadelphia proved to many that they might be better than the 76ers, the win over the Wizards was to be expected. And playing on the second night of a back-to-back, we’ll see just how fresh they are. Indiana had Victor Oladipo out against the Wizards, but he will likely be coming back to play in this one.
It is unclear if Malcolm Brogdon is playing in this game, but if so, they can finally have the roster at “full strength” sans Domantas Sabonis. The Pacers haven’t had too many games this year with their starting backcourt guys both in, but it would be fantastic to see them out there together.
The game plan will continue to remain the same. Pass the ball to Warren and get the heck out of the way. He will just not be stopped.
Pacers Pick up the W
This will be a close game, and Indiana is going to come out on the right side of it. Warren is truly something.
Free Play: Indiana -2
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