At Orlando December 8th, 7:00 PM

Discussion in 'December 2006' started by TheeTFD, Dec 8, 2006.

?

Call your shot

Poll closed Dec 9, 2006.
  1. 2 point game either way

    3 vote(s)
    20.0%
  2. Pistons walk over these pups

    9 vote(s)
    60.0%
  3. Magic too young and too Darkod-up [they shock the world]

    2 vote(s)
    13.3%
  4. Blame it on the Back to Back and travel

    1 vote(s)
    6.7%
  1. roscoe36

    roscoe36 All-Star Administrator

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    Because if they do, it will mean they can't be a big player in free agency.

    It's debatable what you or I think, but there is a certain attraction for the Magic to sign Vince Carter.

    Stranger things have happened. If Hedo is seriously injured, and Hill retires, they will have big holes to fill in the starting front line.
  2. Slippy

    Slippy All-Star Administrator Forum Donor

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    in Darko's interview the magic offered a deal that darko would have taken but at the last minute rescinded it.
    And as Blakely said, its not how Darko does this year but next year after his contract is signed that will tell you what kind of player he will be.

    This is still sort of Milicic's first real opportunity so i wouldn't sweat his mistakes or flaws.
  3. roscoe36

    roscoe36 All-Star Administrator

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    PopcornMachine.net

    It's an excellent resource.

    There was an element of home cooking going on in that game that cannot be denied. Which is fine, because home court is supposed to be an advantage and the referees are never perfect.

    Orlando played well. Darko played ok. The expectations have been revised to where if he scores 4 or 6 points, that is supposed to be ok. I don't buy that. In his 4th year, we're still waiting for him to become a Chris Kaman quality starter.
  4. max

    max All-Star

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    Thats the best post in here.


    Guess I just expected to see more given all the Hype. The way bbaljay and others were talking about him I was expecting to see Darko come crashing into the game like a bull through a china shop.
  5. lazyberbs

    lazyberbs First Round Draft Pick

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    Two things I must very respectfully take opposition to there:

    I really didn't see any real difference in the refs. They were crappy on both sides and good on both sides. I think they called it pretty fairly.

    I agree with you and I don't buy settling for 4-6 points and I hope the others are not, either. That is totally not OK. He will not end the year with less than 10-12 per, and has been doing better than 4 or 6. What I disagree with is that this is his 4th year (of real experience). Sure, he has been around for that long but not playing. He normally would not even be through college by now. Small point and not one to get into a big argument about but it is not like he has played much, no matter on whom you lay the blame.

    Oh, yes. If the Magic do not resign DMC, they will have still further big holes to fill in the front line. They are counting on Ariza to plug the hole if Grant retires but they are figuring that he will stick around for a couple more years at a much, much lower salary. Hedo will probably not be injured enough to be a non-factor but they are figuring Ariza to be a major contributor, anyway. JJ has not even played yet and will be a
    pretty big factor in the future in their opinion. You don't lead Duke and their conference and not be a good shooter.

    They don't know it yet but their problem is at PG. An under 6' point guard does not start successfully in the NBA. They can come off the bench but the odds of them leading their team to a championship are not very good. I still do not understand why he is one of the building blocks for their future.

    I think they are figuring on resigning DMC but I have to wonder if DMC will be resigning there. When he came to the Pistons they were a major contender and now that he is with the Magic, they are a contender, and he has not had good luck playing with contenders. He might be like the others in his draft class and go to a team who will depend on him like the Serbian team. In that way, he will progress faster, or fail. At least, he and all of basketball will know for sure.

    And at 23 or 24, he will not be too old to finish high school and college, and make something of himself.

    Who knows??
  6. lazyberbs

    lazyberbs First Round Draft Pick

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    From your mouth (keyboard) to God's ear. I was hoping for something like that. When he came in and had a bucket, a steal and a rebound all in the first minute, I was feeling pretty good about it, but then he went away. Not getting the ball does that to some people.

    I think that if one of the Pistons came into the game like that, they would get him the ball and ride him until he stopped.

    But that's just me.
  7. roscoe36

    roscoe36 All-Star Administrator

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    Putting aside Darko for a bit, I was really happy to see Max get to play. The brahma was totally rusty but he ran around and banged a bit and that is a real positive. It seems that young Pistons go to the bench and never return sometimes. I truly believe this guy can be a contributor, even if it is as a 7th man.

    I forget if it was mentioned but Billups tweaked his neck and had to get therapy from Arnie Kander during the game. Hopefully this long layoff gives him a chance to heal up (and maybe Blalock some more practice reps).

    Last night, Amir Johnson was inactive along with Lindsey.
  8. max

    max All-Star

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    Pistons are still a better passing team and at exploiting mismatches. Yes he would have scored more but we never played him.

    I though Sheed kind of abused him on a couple of plays and that one of the stops on Dyess was a foul. Even so stopping Dyess is not a hard thing to do these days.

    Overall Darko does stay with his guy and get his hands up. Text book style defense, just not the dominator I was expecting to see.
  9. MotownPride

    MotownPride Starter 2x Fantasy Champion

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    MotownPride & Lazyberbs'
    Back2Back Recap
    Lazy resides in Central Michigan and vacations in Florida and cheers for both the Orlando Magic and the Detroit Pistons. Motown cites his location as Tampa Florida and is a die hard Detroit Pistons Fan. Mo' yelled DEEEtroit basketball in the Orlando stadium while Lazy did a split personality routine in the comfy confines of his own home in Mich.

    Motown says:

    It was Dwight Howard’s birthday and no one in the building appeared to take this matchup lightly. Fans wore the special D-Howard 21st birthday giveaway tee-shirt with pride. The Magic wanted a win and the fans were visibly ready to see one. Upon arriving I couldn’t help myself. I had to search the arena to see if Darko madness had affected the people of Orlando as much as it had seduced some of my esteemed colleagues at PF.com. With all the hoopla in the forum on the emergence of Darko and the Magic’s commitment to building the franchise around the "new twin towers" I was ready to face Darko mania head on. Bring on the bobble head dolls. Show me the jerseys. Show me the posters. The video feeds in the background. The fire truck posters. I’m ready to see bballjay’s fantasy come to life.

    But alas…

    There was nothing.

    No posters. No bobble heads. No videos. No jerseys. No….commitment and no…buzz from the fans.

    This can’t be true can it? Could the Orlando Magic fans and ownership be a bit less impressed with Darko than the media machine and PF.com’s Darko Hall of Fame Club have communicated?

    Early signs point to yes. Orlando is in love with its players. They just don’t have the human victory cigar stigma following them around. The heart of the fans and management go to Howard, Hill, Arroyo, Nelson…and Ariza. Yes Ariza!

    From speaking to the countless Orlando fans I was surrounded by it appears that the jury is still out on Darko. Fans still seem to be in a wait in see mode. Orlando Magic merchandising apparently shares that sentiment.

    First quarter starts. Tales of Chauncey’s non-start and Darko’s push to the starting rotation appear to be premature. The starting fives responsible for the Eastern Conference's best records would face eachother for early bragging rights.

    The Magic go to Dwight Howard in the post immediately to set the tone. Dwight Howard looks huge out there. Hard to believe he is only 21 years old. Nazr does his customary disappearing act, 2 personal fouls in the first 4 mins. Detroit, while Nazr is on the court, gets off to an early 10-4 lead initiated by Chauncey controlling the pace of the game, Detroit dominating the boards and a lot of missed layups by the Magic. Right after Dale Davis enters the game, Detroit gets a beautiful 3 point shot from Sheed to stretch the league to 13-4. The Magic call a timeout and begin to run the offense through Grant Hill. It is an efficient strategy as Orlando goes on a run to drop Detroit’s lead to 15-14.

    Beginning of Darko section:

    Here comes the Serbian Gangsta!

    Bucket 14 comes off Darko’s first shot of the game, a pretty layup. I can see bballjay’s words in my head, “Darko is going to have a big night tonight”. Remember that bucket though, folks. It would be half of Darko’s point total for the night. Darko makes an immediate impact on defense. A steal, a rebound over Flip Murray leading to a fast break. You could feel the optimism of the crowd. Unfortunately, this would be yanked from the crowd as the next play would see Turkoglu inadvertedly land on Tay’s foot attempting to defend Tay’s layup. Turk would be helped off the court. Unfortunately for the Orlando fans he must have taken Darko’s fire with him. His stat line would read 4 pts 5 boards 1 steal 1 steal and 1 block. His second bucket would be off a pretty hook shot in the second quarter. The rest of his game was relatively quiet. He did a decent job defending, nothing amazing though. I will say that his inability to score on smaller sized players…Tay, Maxiel…consistently received groans out of the crowd. I heard constant Darko sucks references around me from fans apparently unsold on his potential. Again the jury is still out, and there appears to be no commitment to the Darko investment. Sounds like the type of Detroit déjà vu that I am happy to pass along to an opposing team. I chuckle to myself and find myself wondering that if this performance was done by Pat Garrity would I even be paying attention.

    This ends the Darko section as he really did not have a great bearing on the final outcome.

    End of Darko section:

    After Turk is carried off the court, Chauncey is the first of the all-star 4 to go to the bench. Enter Flip Murray. He takes a bad shot and makes some poor decisions on offense as point guard. I’m thinking man, this dude is horrible. That opinion changes quickly as Flip lights up. He was easily the most difficult player for Orlando to guard for the rest of the night, finishing with 13 pts off 50% shooting with most shots being challenged. I was constantly asked by Magic fans…who da hell is that guy? He doesn’t pass, but man he’s unstoppable. Lol.

    The rest of the first half saw Detroit characteristically play uninspired basketball for a stretch. But, this time around we saw Flip rely on his bench strongly to get the game back under control. The tactic was successful. Halftime score. Magic 44 – Pistons 40.

    Couple of notes on the first half:
    • Guards for Orlando constantly got dribble penetration to create easy shots. (To the surprise of no one here in the forum) Nelson and Arroyo look extremely quick on the court and try their best to pick up the pace of the game. Flip Murray’s effectiveness was most likely attributed to a huge height advantage over what has to be the smallest PG combo in the NBA. Detroit was content on playing a slow paced efficient attack.
    • Darko spends most of his time on the offensive end throwing awkwardly stiff picks on his man. He rarely roles to the basket. Reminds me of the Indian dude from One Flew Over the Coocoo’s Nest.
    • Detroit is boring to watch on offense and defense. No ball movement and the zone allows them to conserve energy. A great deal of their defense appears to be focused on preventing the opposition from taking comfortable shots close to the basket and forcing jump shots. We looked lethargic. The Pistons are very efficient, but compared to the Magic it is not pretty basketball to watch. In contrast, Orlando plays aggressive defense and looks to score on turnovers. They really do look like a younger, less experienced version of the 2004 model Pistons without the 4th quarter efficiency.
    • Dale Davis did an excellent job on Dwight Howard practically taking him out of the game offensively in the first quarter
    • Detroit’s bench did an excellent job getting the team back into the game in the 2nd quarter. Flip went to the bench much longer than I expected with Maxiel putting in some good minutes at the Power Forward position.
    • The Magic’s cheerleading squad was awesome. They have a segment where they bring out trampolines and do these amazing dunks. One cheerleader even successfully completed the JR. Rider/Kobe Bryant ball between the legs dunk. Fans buzzed about the dunks all game.
    • Detroit interior defense is horrific.
    • Sheed sat 10 mins in the 2nd quarter after a hot first quarter. Not sure why. We didn’t see Darko vs Sheed until the second half.
    • Points in the Paint first Half – Orl 24 – Det 10
    • Fast break Points – Orl 10 – Det 2
    Coming into the third quarter it was painfully obvious that two Pistons were determined to make their presence felt, Chauncey Billups and Rasheed Wallace. The Magic’s point guards were exposed defensively in the first half making it obvious that Billups would need to have a big night to guarantee victory. He did, dropping 31 points (16 pts in the 3rd) as he looked to score first and Tayshaun became the ball distributor with 6 assists. Nazr citing at the 7 min mark. He gets a steal and a block, draws a foul and then disappears back to Flip’s doghouse. Flip’s confidence appears to be growing with Dale Davis. Arroyo, Ariza, Hill, and Howard kept Orlando in the game the 3rd quarter. All of this seemed to take a back seat to Sheed’s battle with the refs though. Lol. The quarter was filled with “Ball don’t lie”s, referee taunting and Sheed using all of this to pump himself up to go inside. Darko draws Sheed as a defensive assignment twice and both times the ball rattles out. The Orlando fans hate Sheed but they all seem to be entertained by his theatrics. Orlando 67 – Detroit 66

    Flip goes back to the bench in the 4th quarter bringing in Maxiel and Dice and Flip Murray. Flip is doing a masterful job mixing in starters and bench players. This particular group has Rip and Prince as the leaders on the court. Hamilton heats up and does an excellent job going after loose balls to the tune of 10 boards for the game! In crunch time the Pistons show why they are among the elite in the league. A picture of offensive efficiency. Orlando folds and it becomes a free throw exhibition with a minute left in the game.

    Closing Thoughts:
    • It became painfully obvious to me that without Sheed this team has no swagger or fire. Rasheed brings energy to this team and although his constant battles with the refs seem counterproductive often times he is the one that gets the team fired up about winning the game. Sheed played Dwight Howard aggressively on defense forcing Howard to the line and taking Orlando out of their offensive rhythm. Sheed is still very critical to this team’s success.
    • Tayshaun Prince shut down Darko. I find that to be kinda funny and sad. Lol.
    • First time I’ve ever heard the opposition’s retort to the “Deeee-Troit basketball” slogan…. Something about… “Deeee-Troit suck my ….” Lol.
    • Pistons fans are everywhere! ¼ of the jerseys worn around the arena had to be Pistons jerseys.
    • Orlando is still a force to be reckoned with. Their formula is more conducive to playoff basketball than the Pistons as they play inspired defense and look to get easy baskets based on dribble penetration. We’d be unwise to take these guys lightly.
    • Simply no other team executes better in the stretch offensively than the Pistons. With no offensive liabilities we are going to be tough to beat in the fourth quarter. Unfortunately, if the jump shot fails us…. we could be in big trouble as I’m not so sure this team is still a good come from behind team.
    • Great win! Bench substitutions and the exploitation of defensive matchups should be applauded.
    • Darko layed an egg in his biggest game so far of the season.
    Lazy says:
    Anyway, going in, I figured there was not much advantage or disadvantage because coming home from a long road trip, your own floor is much like another away game. And all the news about CB not playing and Battie not playing and DMC starting, all came to naught. Just so much trash talk.

    Anyway, right from the beginning, CB really kept the game in check, set the pace, and for most of the game, I did not know whether the defense on both teams was really good or whether the offense was very bad. I opted for the good defense.

    The Pistons started out making 3s and the Magic could not make two footers. And where was Dwight for most of the first quarter. Piston D on him was really good, and stayed that way all night. He didn't score until 5 minutes left in the quarter and his first board came at 4 minutes.

    Here comes Darko and the second unit, and in a minute, DMC had a bucket, a steal and a board. Good start and with the second unit in, (for most of the run) the Magic went from 9 down to 6 ahead. A 19-4 run with mostly the second unit in, with a starter or two.

    Arriza is a good addition to the second unit, Darko played Dyce well, forcing a travel. Then he picked up a mystery foul; during all the replays no one could see a foul. But one was called on DMC.

    Darako went out with the Magic +8 and in a couple of minutes, it was +2. And the Pistons were still keeping Dwight out of his game.

    Both CB and Murray abused Jameer and I expect that to continue. He is just not a starting guard in this league. He is flat not big enough. But then when CB got another 3 and it looked like the Pistons were getting something started, Jameer answered with a 3, tying it up again. Sheed had a nice block and the Magic lead at half 44-40.

    In the second half, they both still were showing good D, and neither could get much going. Jameer got the ball to Ariza on the break one time and I would have sworn it was Rip to Tay. Jameer is trying to force things too much rather than being a point guard and getting the ball to his teammates.

    The Pistons also made a game out of abusing the Magic's lack of a perimeter defense. Sheed, CB, Flip all had uncontested perimeter shots all night and the Magic knew going in that the Pistons are a jump-shooting team. No reason why the Magic did not concentrate on that.

    Carlos does the same thing. When DMC came in and got that lob, so pretty and so uncontested, I just cannot imagine why the Magic does not do more of it. With Dwight in the game or not, Darko is so open after the pick and rolls that if they would only call his number, the lobs are there for the taking. Do it until somebody stops it.

    Carlos dribbled into trouble and tried a leaping, twisting shot that had no chance of going in while DMC was right there for the lob. When this happens so much, I just wonder what is going on.

    Going into the 4th, it is just too much CB because he is so darned good and the Magic just have no answer for him.

    Then, late, Rip is just indespensible. And to boot, in the last two Magic possessions, Darko screwed up. 3 second call and missed a pass. I guess he was just too surprised to catch it.

    Bad floor spacing all night for Orlando didn't help and there was just no answer for Chauncey. And I wish the refs would not make any foul calls on Sheed during the entire game. It just pisses him off and he takes it out on the Magic. Just let him do whatever he wants and keep him happy.

    Well, that's about it.
  10. TheeTFD

    TheeTFD All-Star

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    Brahma's game is to stand under the basket and lift 2 or 3 guys up to the hole.
    Isn't this how coaches want new guys to come into the game, play defense and rebound.
    Darko has 35 to 40 games with decent minutes to draw from.

    Berbs, good point about Darko and contenders. However he makes any team a contender with just a little help. So I think he stays with the Magic. Darko never cared if he scored, he just wants to contribute. He knows he's the man.

    As for the Pistons, Nazz once again was 2 for 2, let's see if he can do 3 for 3.
    If you go to Fox Sports and look at their "head to head" numbers you'll see the Pistons are once again #1 in only one category...points of turnovers.
  11. roscoe36

    roscoe36 All-Star Administrator

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    Great recap MotownFD
  12. max

    max All-Star

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    Mainman - thanks for the recap.

    To borrow lazybers line. After reading the glowing reviews here on Darko's performance I thought I must have had my head up my @$$. to not have seen it.

    Pistons are an odd team. On paper they look like one of the best teams in the league. Then you watch the games and see the opponents seem to drive in at will for easy baskets while we settle for jump shots. Missed rebounds. How many times have the Pistons stepped it up on defense only to lose the offensive board.

    Somehow they find a way to win.
  13. TheeTFD

    TheeTFD All-Star

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    Great approach MoPi.
    It's clear MoPi is struck with Darkoitis and needs to scratch that itch.
  14. MotownPride

    MotownPride Starter 2x Fantasy Champion

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    I'm just giving the people what they want TheeTFD. lol. I think it would have been a bit of a letdown if I covered the Magic game and dedicated two lines to Darko's output which in reality is all he deserved.
  15. Slippy

    Slippy All-Star Administrator Forum Donor

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    I edited Mo's post to include Lazy's comment as we were trying to do a double recap. Most have read both by the time they get to this post but I figured it wouldn't hurt to follow through. Mo's content is untouched and lazy's has only slight editing.

    Thanks to both guys for agreeing to this. now back to the battle;
  16. Dumars4Ever

    Dumars4Ever Bench Warmer

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    Great recap, FD!
  17. MotownPride

    MotownPride Starter 2x Fantasy Champion

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    Thanks for the compliments PF.com fam'. :)
  18. Jackattaq

    Jackattaq First Round Draft Pick

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    Sheed shot 1-5 against Darko and 4-7 when Darko wasn't on him, if that ain't stopping him I don't know what is? Did he have to make him 0-10? Dice was 0-2 against Darko and 0-3 for the entire game. Darko didn't give up points to HIS man, he did come over to try to cover up for some of his teammates that couldn't defend their man (Garrity).
  19. Dumars4Ever

    Dumars4Ever Bench Warmer

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    I saw at least two plays where Sheed got around Darko but missed easy shots near the basket. I'm not saying Darko sucks, but I didn't see him do much to prevent Sheed from scoring.
  20. himat

    himat Bench Warmer

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    Thank you.

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