The Orlando Magic will look to bounce back after blowing an 18-point lead in a 104-94 loss to the Utah Jazz Wednesday night when they take on the Toronto Raptors Friday night at the Amway Center. The Magic fell to 5-2 after the loss while the Raptors stand at just 1-7 and are coming off a close loss to the Charlotte Bobcats Wednesday night. The Raptors had a chance to tie the game in the final seconds but Andrea Bargnani had the ball stripped away by Stephen Jackson before he could attempt a potential game-tying 3-pointer.
The game will be shown locally by FSN Florida. As always, if you can’t watch the game, you can listen on the radio – in English on AM 580 WDBO and in Spanish on AM 1270 WRLZ.
Tip-off is scheduled for 7:00 pm EST.
The officials will be Derrick Stafford, Brent Barnaky and Courtney Kirkland.
Opponent To Watch: Andrea Bargnani, C – The former #1 overall pick is coming off a good game that had an awful finish. The big man isn’t much of a rebounder and isn’t quite the Dirk Nowitzki-like player some hoped he would be, but he’s a solid scorer and a very good shooter. He’s averaging 19.5 points per game this year and is shooting 44.2% from the field. Bargnani has had some big games against the Magic and is averaging 13.7 points per game against the club in his career. He averaged 16.8 points per game and shot 49.0% from the field against the Magic last season.
What To Watch For: How the Magic bounce back from a disappointing loss. After their last loss, they responded by beating the Timberwolves by 42 points. You can’t even expect that but I’d expect the Magic to play well. Another thing to keep an eye on is how Van Gundy uses his bench with his new, set rotation.
(Andrew Melnick is Howard the Dunk’s lead blogger, co-host of CB Sports Radio from 5-7 pm week days (1420sports.com) and ESPN 1080′s Magic Insider (http://espn1080.com). Subscribe to his RSS feed, add him on Facebook and follow him on Twitter to follow him daily. You can download the HTD app here).