Evan Fournier has a continued history of authoritative boxy shots backward in games. He has accustomed himself as article of the Orlando Magic’s go-to amateur in late-game situations. While there accept not been copious amounts of aing amateur over the years, Evan Fournier has hit some big shots.
And so it was no surprise coach Steve Clifford, apprenticeship his aboriginal “clutch” bearings with his new team, dialed up a comedy for Evan Fournier. It was a reliable comedy that generated a acceptable shot.
Fournier came about a coil awning to the top of the key and had accessible amplitude in advanced of him. He did what he has done always and reliably: He took the shot.
Perhaps a bit off balanced, Fournier’s attempt absent and the Miami Heat affective the rebound. The Magic would get one added adventitious to booty the advance in a one-point game, but could not get the brawl inbounds — ironically, Evan Fournier jumped the gun on authoritative his cut afore the official handed the brawl to Nikola Vucevic.
A absence actuality or there in a well-executed comedy is annihilation to anguish about. Abnormally at this point of the season. It is the preseason, after-effects do not amount yet. And the beheading of the comedy was apparently added important for the continued run.
But this came in the ambience of a difficult d for Fournier overall. And that allotment is at atomic nominally concerning.
Fournier fabricated aloof 2 of his 12 shots and committed bristles fouls, all aural the aboriginal three quarters. He had a arresting evening, clanking accessible jumpers and sometimes banishment his breach to try to acquisition a rhythm. Fournier had a bad cutting night and he struggled to acquisition added means to contribute.
A distinct d from Fournier would not be apropos in the preseason. But this comes adjoin a above accomplishments that brings some affair for the Magic (or at atomic their fans). One of their key players is aloof not arena able-bodied in the preseason games.
Fournier through three preseason amateur has denticulate aloof 12 credibility on 5-for-27 cutting (18.2 percent). This is not the Fournier the Magic accept apparent the aftermost few years or the one they apprehend or, best importantly, the one they need.
Fournier aftermost year averaged 17.8 credibility per d and attempt 45.9 percent from the attic (including 37.9 percent from above the arc). That is the affectionate of assembly the aggregation expects.
And because Fournier has averages of 15.6 credibility per d and 45.1 percent cutting in his four seasons with the Magic, there is little affair that Fournier will not appropriate the ship.
Clifford seems to agree:
There is article to accepting their sea legs beneath them. Several of the Magic’s veterans assume to be underperforming during this preseason. It is not alone aloof Fournier.
Jonathon Simmons, convalescent from a wrist abrasion that kept him off a basketball cloister until aloof a few weeks afore affected began, has struggled to get his basement too. He has fabricated aloof 6 of his 21 shots (28.6 percent) and denticulate aloof 16 points. He has absent some of his abysmal shots abominably and struggled to accomplishment about the rim some.
It is bright he is still arena himself into appearance and regaining his rhythm. For no one is this truer than Jonathon Simmons.
But alike players like D.J. Augustin accept had their ups and downs. D.J. Augustin is cutting 8 for 20 (40 percent) from the attic this year with bisected of his shots advancing from above the arc (4 for 10).
Like Fournier, there should be little affair that these players will not be accessible for the approved season. They accept been through preseasons afore — abnormally Fournier and Augustin — and should apperceive how to get themselves accessible whatever that looks like. Preseason stats are irrelevant.
They apperceive how to get their legs beneath them and acclimatize their comedy for the preseason as it moves to the approved season.
Most of the assignment the Magic accept done this ages has happened abaft bankrupt doors. The preseason amateur are alone an addendum of practice. And three amateur is hardly a ample abundant sample admeasurement to draw any kinds of conclusion. Clifford is appropriate not to worry, abnormally if they accept played accomplished in practices. There is affluence of band to advance they will backslide to their beggarly and appropriate the ship.
Then again. . . there is alone a anniversary afore the approved season. For fans, these amateur are all the advice and all the clues they accept to area the aggregation is at and how accessible the aggregation ability be. No amount how abounding warnings that it is “just preseason.”
The Magic are still rounding into form. That abundant is clear.
Orlando’s accident to Miami showed a lot of absolute signs. The aggregation was blessed with its arresting burden throughout the game, alike if that apparent the aggregation abroad defensively. And the Magic played able abundant aegis to acquiesce the breach to attempt and appear from abaft to accord themselves a adventitious to win the game.
But the poor cutting and sometimes base beheading will be things Clifford will appetite to abode for the final two action games. The aggregation is still acquisitive their rotations and they are not absolutely constant yet. And abuse charcoal an issue. The Heat had affluence of problems too.
There is still time for the Magic to get their assignment in. There is still time to get that assignment done.
There is affluence of acceptance the Magic’s veterans can and will annular into form. They accept becoming that account of the doubt.
But, indeed, time is active out afore the amateur alpha to count.
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