The Orlando Magic will look to bounce back from a tough loss in game 3 and even up their best-of-seven series first round series when they take on the Atlanta Hawks Sunday night.
The game will be shown nationally on ESPN 2 locally on FS 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 from Phillips Arena in Atlanta, Georgia is scheduled for 7:00 pm EST.
The Line: Orlando – 2.0, 178.5u
Both Jason Richardson and Zaza Pachulia are suspended for their altercation in game 3. Quentin Richardson will start in Jason’s place.
Michael Cunningham of the Atlanta Journal Constitution reports Jason Collins (back) is feeling better.
The officials will be Dan Crawford, Pat Fraher and Ed Malloy. The alternate is Tony Brown.
Brian Serra offered up what he thought would be the keys to game 4 here.
Quentin Richardson stepped up on offense in game 3, hitting three three-pointers. With Q now entering the starting lineup in place of the suspended Jason Richardson, they’ll need timely outside shooting and fantastic defense out of Q. The Magic were lit up by Joe Johnson in the first half of game 3 as he continuously got into the paint and hit floaters. Q should be able to do a better job than Richardson of limiting Johnson. However, Orlando’s offense is going to suffer without Jason Richardson. J.J. Redick is going to have to shoot the ball better to make for some of the offense Orlando is losing without Jason Richardson.
A lot of this game is going to come down to the performance of Hedo Turkoglu. I know that’s something Magic fans don’t want to hear about, because, well, Turkoglu has been awful in this series. Turkoglu is going to have to make better decisions. Head coach Stan Van Gundy has been passing up good shots and taking bad ones. Although we all know, Turkoglu’s play over the year, can often be summed up like that, but it can’t if the Magic want to get a split in Atlanta. Turkoglu has to take smart shots and set up his teammates. He needs to be more aggressive and get the ball to the hoop.
Jameer Nelson is also going to have to step up. Outside of that third quarter stretch in game 1, Nelson has shot poorly.
Dwight Howard has to keep doing what he’s doing but keep his composure. Sure, no one expected the officials to assess a technical foul after watching a replay, but it’s still a technical foul Howard deserved. He’s going to have to keep his composure.
Defensively, the Magic have been up-and-down. There were some bad stretches in game 3 but Orlando completely locked down the Hawks in the third quarter and did a fantastic job in game 2. They need to play with that same kind of effort and energy. As hard as it is to do, the Magic have to forget about the borderline miracle shots the Hawks continue to hit and keep playing well on the defensive end.
Expect Orlando’s Shooting To Improve
Are we underestimating the Hedo Turkoglu effect on Josh Smith?
Limiting the impact of Jason Collins on Dwight is the key to advancement. Seriously.
Q&A With Soaring Down South
Magic Basketball Online
Orlando Magic Daily
Orlando Pinstriped Post
Orlando Magic Basketblog (Orlando Sentinel)
(Andrew Melnick is Howard the Dunk’s lead blogger 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).
Topics: Al Horford, Atlanta Hawks, Brandon Bass, Chris Duhon, Dwight Howard, Earl Clark, Gilbert Arenas, Hedo Turkoglu, J.j. Redick, Jameer Nelson, Jason Richardson, Joe Johnson, Josh Smith, Kirk Hinrich, Larry Drew, Marvin Williams, Orlando Magic, Quentin Richardson, Ryan Anderson, Stan Van Gundy