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NBA Playoffs, Celtics Magic Game 4: Is there any hope for Orlando? Who can be their Dave Roberts?

May 24, 2010, 1:50 PM EDT

Thumbnail image for rondo_howard.jpgOne beloved Boston sports team — the Boston Bruins — just lost a series where they were ahead 3-0. The Philadelphia Flyers came back and spanked them.

So there it is Orlando, your ray of hope. It’s not much of one, it’s not even the same sport, but your team hasn’t given anybody much reason for hope in this series, so you take what you can get.

The smart money is on the Celtics closing this series out tonight. Not only have they been the better team –with the Magic unable to execute their game plan in the face of the Celtics defense — but also they have taken the fighting spirit out of Orlando. After the Magic rolled over in Game 3, what would lead one to expect anything will be different for Game 4 tonight?

Orlando needs somebody to be their Dave Roberts. Someone other than Dwight Howard, who the Celtics will let have a big game as long as his teammates stay cold (see Game 2 for example). Someone on Orlando needs to step up and start hitting the shots the team has been missing, someone needs to make some defensive plays, someone needs to inspire them with effort.

The Magic need that one win to plant the seed of hope and give it a little water.

But that seems a long shot, the Celtics have intimidated the Magic. Boston can cover Dwight Howard one-one-one so they stay home on the three-point shooters, and Orlando can’t seem to deal with that. Orlando was one of the best executing teams in the NBA during the season, now they look timid. The Celtics got physical, and the Magic backed down. Not Stan Van Gundy, the players. There has been no fight in that dog. What we will likely see tonight is a lot more of this.

Maybe, maybe Orlando will come out with some fight tonight. Maybe they will be proud and the Celtics overconfident. Maybe Rajon Rondo will decide to work on his midrange game tonight. Maybe Rashard Lewis will get hot from three.

Probably not, though. It’s probably over and tonight we will just watch the death throes of a Magic season that had looked so promising. And we’ll watch the Celtics get ready for another Finals.

  1. free_online_dictionary - May 24, 2010 at 2:21 PM

    death *throes

  2. Frank - May 24, 2010 at 2:28 PM

    I think the Magic should all “Call in Sick”. Save us all (Magic fans)from any further embarassment. What a disappointment; just no heart!

  3. jeffrey - May 24, 2010 at 3:21 PM

    Great read – also, see what’s up at porkchopfactory. com

  4. GaryinBoston - May 24, 2010 at 4:33 PM

    Here’s the best part of that little clip: as the ball drops through the strings, Tony Allen (who hustled to follow the play) puts his forearm in Jayson Williams’ back and shoves him, gently but firmly. You can almost hear Allen calling him a punk…or something to that effect…and Williams doesn’t even turn around to confront him; he just takes it. If the Celts come out with the same intensity and execution they displayed in game 3, there’s not a damned thing the Magic can do to win the game. And they know it.

  5. THE REF - May 24, 2010 at 5:00 PM

    that was a traveling violation

  6. Omnius - May 24, 2010 at 5:56 PM

    About time for the Orlando Mundane to act like men instead of little cowards too afraid to play big bad Gang Green. The Orlando Mundane are a complete farce and have shown they did not deserve to be in the playoffs, they are the epitome of the Eastern CreamPuff Conference. Maybe they can take some pointers from the Lost Suns who showed they atleast have some courage to come out change their gameplan radically and find a way to win, even though the Lakers will come back and crush them in games 4 and 5.

  7. just sayin - May 24, 2010 at 6:30 PM

    Let’s Go Boston……..

  8. Mr. Shawn - May 24, 2010 at 6:39 PM

    Not traveling, mister:

  9. K Bryant - May 24, 2010 at 8:09 PM

    Magic are losing for same reason as last year. Van Gundy doesn’t know what he’s doing and is stubborn. Magic play poorly against big front lines like the Celtics/Lakers because the Magic don’t have a true power forward to held Dwight Howard rebound and defend.
    Rashard Lewis is softer than a pillow and it’s painful watching Dwight Howard the lone Magic player in the paint with everyone else standing at 3 point line.

  10. Definitive J - May 24, 2010 at 8:14 PM

    Boston is looking more and more like champions as the playoffs go on. The Lakers will have no answer whatsoever for Rondo, and I am looking forward to them winning another title!

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