Magic Go Bird Hunting

By:
Published: November 1, 2013
Monty Williams Eric Gordon

New Orleans: 12 turnovers, 20 made free throws, 44 rebounds, 92 field goal attempts
Orlando: 19 turnovers, 21 made free throws,  44 rebounds, 70 field goal attempts

What a beautiful stat line! New Orleans didn’t turn the ball over, got plenty of shot opportunities, and matched Orlando on the boards.. and got DEMOLISHED.

In a first half that could only be described as a train wreck, the Pelicans scored 35 points against an allegedly inferior team.. well, it sure didn’t look like the Pelicans were better tonight.

The tone was set early by Vucevic and Nelson, as Vucevic took Smith in the post and faced him up, and Nelson was bombing 3s from downtown. Davis got out to a hot start with 2 early buckets, but soon hit a cold spell.

After that, it was all Afflalo, who just wrecked the Pelicans all night long en route to 30 points on 14 shots.

Quite frankly, I don’t even know what to say about this game. The Magic just destroyed us. The Pelicans offense looked stagnant and the Orlando Heat–er, Magic, played as if they were one of the best offenses in the league.

Remember how I said the Magic were a jump shooting team? Well, apparently New Orleans was unaware, as the Magic hoisted up jumper after jumper as if it was a shootaround.

Notes and Observations

-Davis may have been inefficient, but he posted a monster line. 26 points, 17 rebounds, and 3 blocks for AD, who was one of the lone bright spots in the game. AD’s preseason was no fluke: this guy is going to be scary good.

-Gordon ran very little of the offense tonight, as Jrue commandeered the Pels squad almost the entire time he was in. This may have been a product of Monty wanting to attack Nelson (guarding Jrue) rather than attacking Afflalo (guarding Gordon).

-Tyreke is very, very rusty. He only got into 2 preseason games because of that ankle injury and his rust is showing. Evans was 0-7  on the night.

-Smith stayed out of foul trouble, but his game was off tonight. He went 3-12 from the field.

-Stiemsma either needs to do something on offense or needs to be off the floor. Defenses simply don’t respect him and passing to him is essentially a reset of the offense. Defenses are sagging off of him and just helping on everyone else and it is making it much harder on the other Pelicans.

-Rivers got his first time of the season after sitting the bench for the entire Pacers game. The Pelicans became a noticeably more energetic squad with him on the floor. Granted, his playing time happened when the game was essentially over, but there is one undeniable truth: when Rivers plays, he works his butt off. His effort may have been meaningless in terms of the outcome, but I really appreciated his effort.

-Morrow can flat out shoot. He got fouled on a corner 3, didn’t get the call, and somehow still drained the shot. He is one of the best pure shooters we’ve ever had sport a New Orleans jersey.

-Withey made his first appearance in the regular season in garbage minutes and did a solid job defending Nicholson in the post. Again, it was in meaningless minutes, but I think he needs to get a shot at some playing time. He is at least athletic enough to crash the rim on offense and block shots on defense. New Orleans has gotten virtually nothing from Stiemsma and Onuaku and at this point, I don’t see why Withey can’t at least get a chance.

 

26 comments
Major504
Major504

I was at the game last night and the Magic players we hitting damn near every shot even with tight defense. We miss damn near every shot even the easy ones. And I agree that Withey should get more mins, can't learn how to play NBA ball if your not on the court. His future is brighter then those other two guys who names I don't need to mention. Once Ryno comes back, we will see the team we were hoping to see the team we saw in preseason, but thats 3 or more games away.

yaboytonez
yaboytonez

Listen people it takes time to build a team. These guys have to learn who can do what. Evans does not look good, Holiday is turnover prone, Smith is struggling right now, Rivers is not seeing a lot of playing time, and Ryno is out. This season was supposed to be about development and ressurection right from the jump. If you were expecting playoffs shame on you. It took the Thunder a couple years, give Monty time.

Come On Pelican
Come On Pelican

The shooting last night was atrocious (34.8%), but the truth is in an 82 game season even good teams sometimes have games like that (yes, it's a shame it came for New Orleans in Game 2).  The obvious weakness on the team is the absence of a legitimate center.  This is one fan who's hoping Eric Gordon will continue to stay healthy and will continue to generate decent stats so the Pelicans can trade him sooner rather than later for a solid starting big man.

Papa Pelican
Papa Pelican

With first pick the New Orleans Pelicans select in the 2014 draft is oh thats right they don't have a 2014 draft pick..That Monty Williams is a joke i hope he's replaced by Geroge Karl.

Nithenz
Nithenz

Our offence was hurting my eyes last night and that is Monty responsability to fix. I thought the Stiemsma signing was a good one, but never realized how stagnant an offence could be with him. I know we were spoiled by the best poing guard in the last 20 years, but i cant avoid complaining about PG that do not get teammates involved. Lets hope Ryan's shooting is the key to fix this, but we certainly looked like a bottom 3 team last night.


cjkirby19
cjkirby19

Withey and Rivers need to be the options off the bench, not Stiemsma and Roberts. Roberts can't create enough for others and gets torched defensively and Stiemsma has no offensive output. Rather Withey receive 15 minutes a night, blocking shots and having at least one post move. Things will get better once the team gels, just hope we don't live to regret a poor start and missing the 7-8 seed as a result.

xman20002000
xman20002000

Well stranger things have happened...  the other night the Lakers beat the Clippers with their bench in the 4th quarter...  more strange was the play of their SG... Xavier Henry was the leading scorer with 22 points...  We draft Quincy Poindexter trade him for Vasquez....  and both are gone...  

I am sure Coach knows that playing competitive in a loss vs being unprepared is a coach killer.... 


TalkingBasketball
TalkingBasketball

Also it's hard to play the slash and kick game when you only have one shooter who's going to make the other team pay. Could not have imagined being without Ryan Anderson would be this detrimental

TalkingBasketball
TalkingBasketball

The Magic are a better team than people think. There front court is deep and they are burgeoning with young talent with a couple savvy vets in Nelson, Afflalo, and Big Baby thrown in. I wouldn't be surprised if they made the playoffs at the 8 seed (and I've been saying that since June). But tonights game was terrible. New Orleans got outclassed in every manner. Did anyone really think we'd hemorrhaging low post ability when we gave away the bad Lopez brother? The Big 3 of Davis, Gordon, and Jrue is solid as ever but they aren't going to be able to compete with scrubs around them. Expected more out of Aminu and Stiemsma; both of there defensive games have regressed and they seem to be even more anemic on offense- if thats possible. Playoffs teams don't lose games like that to an Magic team missing their best player (Tobias Harris).

PelicanDownUnder
PelicanDownUnder

Uhhh........

so good to care about these bad losses again, haven't had this feeling in 3 years, good to have real New Orleans basketball back! But let's get up for the next one lads! Gotta beat them Charlotte horbobnetcats

LaNative
LaNative

Disappointing and shocking loss is what comes to mind.  Seems like the Pelicans either took the Magic for granted or weren't prepared.  The Magic shot uncontested and/or smashed at the rim.  If Ryan's chip takes the full three-weeks to heal, we may not even get a win if tonight is any indication.  Tyreke obviously is rusty and trying to find his rhythm but he is definitely out of sorts. As a Monty fan some of this has to be on his shoulders.  He's going to have to change up something to get these cats to realize that they have got to bring it every night and that even bad teams will beat them without effort. From tonight's showing you'd think the Magic weree champions.   

Jason Quigley
Jason Quigley

If Anderson doesn't play, the team may not win a game if they play like they did tonight. Our already thin frontcourt is even more depleted, and we also lost a great shooter that would have helped our guards do what they do better (hey Tyreke).

Games against teams like the Magic are games you're usually expected to win and therefore must win...but it just seemed like the team didn't show up tonight. Even though the outcome of both games so far was the same (90 points scored in a loss), I was much more impressed with the team in the game against the Pacers. Tonight, while the Magic did have a good game (give credit where credit is due), play just seemed sloppy for the Pels all night. I'm glad we did have some garbage time though, so Rivers was able to play more. I think it's ridiculous that Roberts has played over him 

504ever
504ever

For the second game in a row, I will post calling the game disappointing.  Yet this game goes beyond disappointing and approaches being called a disaster.  Things don't get any easier tomorrow night, and this team needs a win.

xman20002000
xman20002000

Great analysis of the game... moving forward however... We could be shocked without Ryan Anderson...  We miss his length and he changes the defensive scheme being a big who can shoot from the 3....  In deference to the effort...  These guys don't know each other but we are a different team without Anderson...  

Your point about the Center position...  someone suggested a possible trade with Houston for Asik.... giving them Ryan Anderson.... NO....  Smith had 6 points and Aminu had 4....  Roberts had 4 and Evans was 0-7.....  Frankly I am happy we lost like this....  considering preseason is over.... Stop Trippin...  and get well soon Ryan Anderson...AD needs help since other than he our Bigs didn't do anything....   Jason Smith not fouling out early in the game isn't an accomplishment...
 

yaboytonez
yaboytonez

Agreed. Roberts is a take over we need a quick bucket type player. Rivers defends better and distributes more.

yaboytonez
yaboytonez

This is good. We have to find a way to get Morrow involved

yaboytonez
yaboytonez

When we traded Nerlins I came on here and blasted Demps. I caught a lot of flack for that. Holiday is not a point guard. He is Westbrook. Defense and athleticism.

yaboytonez
yaboytonez

Mid season I expect all these issues to be fixed.

yaboytonez
yaboytonez

Rivers does too lol. He is a better option. I like him better than Holiday honestly. Way less turnovers.

xman20002000
xman20002000

@504ever Please don't contend things don't get any easier and we are playing the Bobcats...

yaboytonez
yaboytonez

If we get it we should pick up Marcus Smart. We have no point guard.

bucklezzzman
bucklezzzman

@yaboytonez the same guy who averaged 9 assists the first half of last year?! How about there was a lack of assists last night simply because nobody could hit a shot?! Idk how many times Jrue fed Smith alone when he was wide open and he missed. And  nobody is on Westbrook's tier as an athletic PG not named Wall or Rose, that was a horrible comparison.

504ever
504ever

Tonight is a back to back with travel for the home team. And remember how "easy" the Magic game was supposed to be.