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Orlando Magic can only point to themselves in loss to Chicago Bulls

The Orlando Magic’s disappointing reduction to the Chicago Bulls arrived from a number of self-inflicted wounds. These problems are correctable if the team locks in.

Mentor Steve Clifford took the podium after his team’s disappointing 110-109 reduction to the Chicago Bulls at the Amway Center on Friday and set the blame on himself initial and foremost.

With the recreation tied, the Bulls experienced referred to as a timeout and Clifford envisioned them to arrive out with their small lineup. He matched, putting Jonathan Isaac at center with the functional defensive lineup all around him. Chicago experienced Robin Lopez on the ground nonetheless. The Orlando Magic did not substitute Nikola Vucevic again into the recreation.

Orlando received the first end, forcing a difficult shot from Zach LaVine on the perimeter. The Magic would get their opportunity. But Robin Lopez experienced the dimensions benefit over Wesley Iwundu on the block. He quickly reached over the box out attempts and scored to set the Bulls up two.

Clifford said after the recreation right before just about anything else this engage in was on him. He did not see Robin Lopez on the ground and could not act quick plenty of to get Nikola Vucevic again in. This was an occasion exactly where the coach manufactured a obvious error and it value the team.

It was just one of a number of problems the Magic manufactured down the extend of a near recreation.

A collection of problems

There ended up the skipped cost-free throws — 11 skipped cost-free throws in 24 attempts for the recreation and 4 of eight in the last quarter. That included two misses from 83-percent cost-free-toss shooter D.J. Augustin with 30 seconds left in a tie recreation (that preceded the Robin Lopez idea in).

There was Aaron Gordon‘s foul miscue on the last possession. He tried using too difficult to capture up to Lauri Markkanen and fouled him as he landed on his 3-pointer. Markkanen manufactured two of the 3 cost-free throws to give the Bulls the just one-position last margin.

Clifford would also position out the team’s lousy third quarter defense exactly where the Bulls scored 38 details. That reduction of awareness to detail and concentration is eventually what can value a team any recreation.

The excellent news of all this? These are all correctable problems.

Friday’s reduction was mostly out of character for the Magic. And so it could be easy to dismiss as an aberration. That is only if the team returns to its concentration and intensity — just one it mostly exhibited in the course of the fourth quarter in erasing a 7-position deficit.

Momentum is the upcoming day’s pitcher and the Orlando Magic will have to have to redouble its attempts in Sunday’s recreation towards the Toronto Raptors to set this recreation powering it.

An aberration?

The team shoots 78.1 percent from the foul line for the period, 12th in the league. Clifford is proper to feel that the cost-free toss taking pictures that marred the Magic’s recreation Friday was an aberration. A absence of legs coming from eight times off.

Then all over again, the Bulls skipped all but just one cost-free throws. It is not an excuse. All the video games count the exact in the end. Orlando dropped the ball at the foul line.

The Magic have crafted a solid defensive name in the course of the period. They are ninth in the league in defensive rating giving up 107.8 details for each 100 possessions.

The number of video games exactly where the Magic have provided up 112.2 details for each 100 possessions like they did Friday are less and less. Teams have scored additional than 110 details for each 100 possessions five instances in the past 10 video games.

The Magic have been ready to endure some of these poorer defensive performances thanks to some stronger offense. That ongoing in this recreation. But defense is eventually what helps make the variation for Orlando. The team will not acquire many video games performed in the 110s.

The other small problems all people acknowledges too. This was a absence of concentration and a absence of execution. And nonetheless, the Magic gave by themselves a opportunity to acquire.

A fourth-quarter revival

Awaking from their slumber, Orlando set on a fourth-quarter comeback that gave the team a opportunity to acquire. The Magic held the Bulls to a recreation-small 21 details in the quarter. Chicago manufactured only 7 of 21 photographs and experienced only that just one essential offensive rebound.

The Magic erased a 7-position deficit to start off the quarter, building 10 of 19 photographs. Their only flaw was that cost-free toss taking pictures and then those gaffes around the end.

It is discouraging the team missing. Finally success make any difference for a team in a limited Playoff race. There is no acquiring this just one again — or acquiring again the third quarter exactly where the team permit go of the rope. But the Magic did all the proper issues for most of the recreation. And it appreciates it.

The Bulls performed well to get the acquire. But the recreation nonetheless felt like it was additional about what the Magic did completely wrong alternatively than what the Bulls did proper. Orlando with momentary lapses of concentration set by itself in a position to shed.

Players appeared to figure out that after the recreation. Even though Clifford shouldered the blame for that just one engage in initial and foremost, all people else acknowledged that is not what manufactured the recreation. It was the skipped cost-free throws, a little something absolutely in just their control. It was the third quarter exactly where the team appeared to sleepwalk via issues and wrestle defensively.

If the Magic tighten up in the third quarter and make cost-free throws, they stroll absent with an imperfect acquire. And that acquire would be all that mattered in the end.

No cause to panic

1 reduction is no cause to panic, even towards an opponent with a history like the Bulls. The team nonetheless requirements to locate wins exactly where it can and compete with each team.

As it has recognized in the course of the period, the margin for error is small. Lapses in concentration for extensive stretches of time can sink this team even towards a team like the Bulls. If just about anything, the recreation could have taught the Magic how devastating their concentration can be.

That fourth quarter looked like a large waking from a slumber and storming all the things in its path. In opposition to a team like the Bulls, that kind of engage in can erase about any direct. Orlando will have a good deal additional video games left towards groups like Chicago. And if they consider the lessons from this recreation, they must acquire those.

The team will locate out Sunday if Friday’s reduction was an illustration of the All-Star Break lingering or some pattern that is a little bit additional critical.

The Magic know it was their reduction of concentration that value them Friday. This is not a team that can manage to simplicity again into the video games and their routine. They required that dose of actuality. Now a harder extend and a harder opponent await.

Following: Grades: Chicago Bulls 110, Orlando Magic 109

The Magic will have to be locked in now and limit those self-inflicted problems.

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