The Orlando Magic, winners of their last two games, will play host to the Houston Rockets Wednesday night. The Magic come with a 21-7 record while the Rockets stand at 17-11. Orlando is 11-2 at Amway, but the Rockets are a good road team as their 9-7 road record shows.
The Magic defeated the Utah Jazz Monday night 104-99. The Rockets are also coming off a win, a 108-99 victory over the L.A. Clippers.
Tip off from Amway Arena is set for 7:00 pm EST. The game will air on Fox Sports Florida. As always, if you can’t watch the game, you can hear it locally on WDBO 580 AM and in Spanish on WONQ AM 1030.
The Line: Orlando -9
As reported earlier, Jameer Nelson will start.
The game marks the return of Tracy McGrady to Orlando. The Rockets are trying to ease T-Mac back in. T-Mac has played in five games this year, playing just 7.6 minutes per games. He’s averaged 3.4 points per game. McGrady has averaged 15.3 points per game and 5.9 assists per in his career against the Magic.
Rockets Rookie Forward Chase Budinger is out with a severely sprained ankle.
The Rockets are a middle-of-the-road team in most statistical categories.
They score 101.5 points per game, but rank just 16th in offensive efficiency. Houston’s starting Point Guard, Aaron Brooks loves to get in the lane and make plays, so Dwight Howard will have to continue his dominating play in the paint against the Rockets. Brooks 17.1 points per game and 5.4 assists per game, both team-highs.
Former Magic swingman Trevor Ariza averages 17.0 points per game.
Carl Landry had 27 points in his return to actions Tuesday night against the Clippers. He lost three teeth after a collision with Dirk Nowitzki on December 18th.
The Rockets are very undersized. Chuck Hayes is just 6-6 and Carl Landry is just 6-9 but both players play much bigger, so the Rockets are still 16th in rebounding rate, very good for a team with such limited size. Forward Luis Scola leads the way, grabbing 9.3 rebounds per game.
Defensively, the Rockets rank 15th in efficiency.
On paper, this is a game that Dwight Howard should dominate on both ends of the floor and that the Magic should win, but the team has lost their last seven home games against the Rockets. Orlando will have to keep their effort up to win their third straight game.