Howard can't be happy about his team's performance this year in the playoffs
The Orlando Magic are not doing well right now, they are in the 1-3 zone, essentially playoff limbo.
Maybe Howard can lead the team too three straight victories, but most likely not, Orlando is probably going down in a 4-2 fashion.
The next season of the NBA looms with uncertainty, however, for this article, let's pretend that there is no problem with the CBA, everyone is happy, and it's business as usual for the Magic in their quest for a championship ring.
Here are three things they definitely need to do if they ever hope of matching up against the elite, and winning that championship.
Before I begin, let me say that I am not a very clever person, and these things for the Magic can range from impossible to blatantly obvious, you may not agree with me, and criticize me or you may want to improve on my ideas.
Both are acceptable, I enjoy hearing constructive criticism for my writing. Now, without further ado, let's see what the Magic can do.
1) Change up the game plan: After the Magic trade in December, they were on fire, shooting threes was like making an uncontested layup for the Magic. However, as we've heard so many times before, you live by the three, and you will die by the three.
Which of these 5 would you want to see backing up Dwight?
I've watched the Magic play, and they can go from brilliant too absolutely putrid. I'm not sure if that's inconsistency, or just a flaw by team design, but it's a problem that needs to be fixed immediately.
Jason Richardson and Gilbert Arenas are prime examples, both can either play brilliant, or be a non-factor. It's not the coach, it's just the design of the team, Howard is a threat to the inside, so stock the team with great perimeter shooters, and you effectively stretch the defense.
However, if you have a team that defends the three-point shot well, and you regularly get 30 points from downtown, that could end up only being half the amount, and you find yourself in a heap of trouble.
When the three-point shot isn't falling, the Magic do one of two things: Go to the inside, or continue the three-point barrage hoping that it changes soon.
I'm not saying completely redo the game plan, just try new things, tweak the plays, predictability isn't a bad thing, but like a team, your game plan must be able to cover any team's offense, and handle their defense.
2) Get a solid backup (or two!) for Dwight/Roster Changes: Obvious problem, Dwight leaves the game because he's tired or in foul trouble, what does Orlando have? A 6'10" forward to fill in?
The Magic currently have no interior presence when Howard isn't there. I'm sure the Magic are weighing their options next year, it should be interesting to see if they draft, trade, or sign a center.
Best case scenario: You get two decent centers who can put on a half-way decent Howard impersonation.
Second worse case scenario: You sign/draft a center who is really just there because he has height and may occasionally show some kind of promising play for a backup 10-15 minutes.
Worst case scenario: Orlando signs Eddy Curry.
Every team should always look for roster changes that they think can really help them along the way. If they can build a deep, versatile roster, you can be prepared for every situation.
3) Keep Dwight Howard: Simple, lose Dwight Howard, lose all your progress you've made, the Magic would be like a smaller Pacer team without Dwight, decent players, no real go to guy, lack of interior presence.
As much as I'd love to see Dwight in a Celtic uniform, (yeah, I know it isn't happening) it is imperative that Dwight remain a Orlando player if the Magic have any hope of getting a ring.
He wants to stay in Orlando, which is perfect for the team. Keep Dwight happy, and don't let him walk away like Shaq did! And if he does walk away, next time you get a top draft pick, don't get a center...Just in case.
So, those are my suggestions for the Magic, and I really hope you enjoyed the article. Please feel free to point out any mistakes I've made, or something you would add in.
Also, I've been lacking in the creativity department, partially because of how busy I've been.
With that being said, I love to write about sports, and if anyone would like me to write about a specific basketball related question/issue, I'd be happy to do so.