San Antonio Spurs @ Orlando MagicAmway Center, Orlando, FL
November 28, 2012, 6:00 PM Spurs Time
TV: FSSW - RADIO: 1200 AM WOAI
The San Antonio Spurs look to notch another win as they face the rebuilding Orlando Magic.
San Antonio is having a wonderful time in the Eastern Conference. Their road record so far is 4-0 on this trip. They look to continue the streak without letting up on the gas. The last match against the lowly Wizards was a great time to rest the starters but Pop opted to put pressure on the young Wizards and played the starting five, although none was on the court for even half the game. With such a deep bench, Pop was soon able to sit the starters and play the reserves big minutes. Will tonight against the lowly Magic be any different? As the Memphis Grizzlies are quietly making a case for being championship contenders, Pop and the Spurs do not have too much wiggle room. Every win is a win closer to home court advantage and every loss is closer to letting the Grizzlies tie up the Southwest. No game is meaningless at this point and the Spurs could use the 'W' here in Orlando as well.
The Magic are one of three teams to have made the playoffs for 6 consecutive seasons starting in 2007, joining the Spurs and the Lakers. They used to have a guy named Dwight Howard on the roster (and said guy seems to be doing his best impression of Shaquille O'Neal so far in his career), but now they don't. After signaling a rebuild by relieving head coach Stan van Gundy (replacing him with former Spurs assistant and 2007 NBA champion Jacque Vaughn), firing general manager Otis Smith (replacing him with former Thunder assistant GM Rob Hennigan, who also began his career in San Antonio), and last but not least trading Howard to the Los Angeles Lakers and receiving solid, if unspectacular players Arron Afflalo, Al Harrington, and Josh McRoberts.
Nevertheless Coach Jacque Vaughn's Motley Crew (or JVMC for short; this is what I like call the Magic) scoffs at the idea of a traditional rebuild, what with this being a team coached by a guy plucked directly from the Gregg Popovich coaching tree. They started their season with two surprising wins, yet nevertheless sit at fourth in the "no one but the Heat" Southeast Division, as the solid Atlanta Hawks and the surprising and gutsy (yet prone to being curbstomped by elite teams) Charlotte Bobcats sit above them, with only the winless Washington Wizards (or should it be Ashington Izards since there are no W's in DC?) below them in the Division. Nevertheless, this is a team that never gives up, and competes for all 48 minutes. Despite the fact that Howard carried them on defense, this is still a team that not only retains most of the shooters that made up their potent inside-outside attack that got them to the NBA Finals in 2009, but also one that is running more creative sets than they had with Dwight Howard.
Orlando Magic perspective can be found at the great Orlando Pinstriped Post.
Game Prediction: The Spurs take control in the first half while keeping the Pesky JVMC away. Spurs by 6. Vegas says Spurs by 7.5
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Game Previewers Prediction Records & how many points off per prediction
Joe deLarios 5-0 (-1, 3, 5, 0, 1)
Wes Thorne 4-0 (-1, 0, 23, 2)
Racm 0-3 (-25, -14, -5)
Stijl 1-1 (-12, 11)
CapHill 1-0 (13)
As always Tony must dominate Fisher, and NBA league pass is recommended for those who are willing to pony up the cash. Almost every Spurs game will be broadcast there, which is especially helpful for those of us who aren't in the San Antonio area. Please don't post links to illegal game feeds in the game thread. Links to illegal feeds are not permitted on SBNation, but you can probably find them out there on the internets if you're resourceful and desperate.