Just when we thought the loss of All-Star point guard Jameer Nelson was also the lost of the season.
Just when the 33-8 start (not to mention a season sweep of the Lakers and Spurs) looked to be nothing but a cute, early-season, feel-good story that was about to end (like everyone outside of Orlando assumed it would), there is hope.
The Orlando Magic acquired Rafer Alston (yes Mr. Skip To My Lou himself) in a three-way trade with the Memphis Grizzlies and Houston Rockets. Not to mention dumping Brian Cook's salary and giving the Magic $10 million in cap space.
Now I know I’m a few days late with this article, but it’s never too late to give some thanks:
I’d like to thank Tracy McGrady for giving up on this season forcing the Rockets front office to give up as well and look to the future.
I’d like to thank Brian Cook for going 3-of-5 from the floor last night and raising his trade value just enough at the last possible minute to get this to work.
More importantly, I’d like to thank the schedule makers for (although randomly) having Orlando play the New Orleans Hornets the night before the trade deadline. Which leads me to thanking the man who made this all possible: Chris Paul.
I’d like to thank you, CP3, for torching Orlando with 36 points and showing Otis and the entire front office that the Magic were not going to be able to hide their point guard woes when it comes to dealing with teams with elite point guards.
If it weren’t for you making A.J. and Lue look like a couple of Division II college players, Orlando may not have been able to recognize just how bad the team is without a legit guard until it was too late.
And finally, I’d like to thank YOU, Otis Smith and Stan Van Gundy, for not throwing the season away and for giving this Orlando Magic team the chance to make some noise in this year's playoffs.
Thank You. Thank You. Thank You.
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