As a Magic fan I have to say that Game Four was an extremely low blow for Orlando. The Celtics got lucky with the last shot of the game and will really have to bring it in Game Five tonight in Boston.
The Magic mean business, especially how the Celtics reacted after the game.
Starting forward Rashard Lewis stated:
"It most definitely adds fuel to the fire. We don’t like that type of stuff. You have to be professional about the game of basketball. We’re a professional team and we expect them to be the same way."
"Those guys were jumping up and down, waving their hands at us, saying bye, but it’s not over yet; it’s just 2-2," Lewis added. "We could have done the same thing when we won on their court, but we’re more professional than that. They still have to win ballgames. The series ain’t over yet."
Clearly, the Magic are upset about the way the Celtics handled their win and will surely bring it tonight on the court.
Keys to the game
The Magic will need to hit their shots tonight from both beyond the three-point arc and around the perimeter. They are shooting 46.3 percent from the floor and a horrible 34.4 percent from the three-point line during the series.
Shooting guard Courtney Lee will get the start, and he will be relied heavily upon to produce both offensively and defensively. He has averaged just under 10 PPG during the two games he has played, compared to his 12.6 PPG in the first round series.
Starting point guard Rafer Alston will need to snap out of his six PPG scoring funk during this series and really step up tonight. He averaged 15.2 PPG during the Sixers series and is bound to break out tonight.
Rashard Lewis will be the biggest factor in this game, just as he has been throughout the entire series thus far. He gets another opportunity to maximize against both Glen Davis and Brian Scalabrine, if Scal plays tonight. Lewis is averaging 21.3 PPG, seven RPG, and shooting 45.8 percent during this series and is playing no short of spectacular for the Magic. I really hope he continues to relentlessly attack the hoop tonight.
Howard will have to continue his defensive dominance on the low end of the court and will have to get off to a hot start and keep the stride going throughout the game.
Superman usually becomes virtually invisible on the offensive end during the final quarter of the game. He must make a big impact in the fourth quarter for the Magic tonight.
Another major key for the Magic will be to make more lay ups tonight. They have been attacking the basket more in this series than all season long, and must focus on finishing or getting fouled rather than missing the easy two.
The Celtics starting center Kendrick Perkins has been reported to have a sore shoulder, but will definitely be on the court tonight. That is a nagging injury that can surely affect his overall production and could possibly take a toll on his play tonight.
Brian Scalabrine is said to have flu-like symptoms and might not even suit up for the game tonight. If that does happen, Mikki Moore will get the majority of his minutes.
The Big Three will need to produce tremendously on both ends of the court if the Celtics want to take the lead in this series. They are the most important players on their team and will have a lot of weight on their shoulders to produce tonight.
I predict an intense battle and ultimately a win for the good guys, the Orlando Magic.
Tip off starts at 8 o'clock tonight on TNT. Let's go Magic!