National Basketball Association
Orlando at Detroit
When: 7:00 PM ET, Wednesday, January 16, 2019
Where: Little Caesars Arena, Detroit, Michigan
The Orlando Magic are one of the more inconsistent teams in the league but are capable of looking like a playoff contender when operating at the top of their game. The Magic will try to keep playing well and earn a third consecutive win when they visit the Detroit Pistons on Wednesday.
Orlando looked ready to fade into the bottom of the Eastern Conference after dropping four straight and finishing 1-5 on a six-game road trip but wins over the Boston Celtics and the Houston Rockets at home over the weekend changed the outlook. "The feeling that we have now compared to two days ago, it's not even close, but that's the way this league is with so many games in a short amount of time," Magic center Nikola Vucevic told reporters. "Things can turn around quickly. That's why you cannot ever get too high or too low. We knew that we had it in us." The Pistons need things to turn around quickly after suffering their 17th loss in the last 22 games with a 100-94 setback at the Utah Jazz on Monday. "We just have to be better, I have to be better," Detroit forward Blake Griffin told reporters after the loss. "A couple turnovers, a couple bad possessions, you can't afford those things against a team like this. We just have to be a little sharper, but I like the way we came in and competed and fought tonight."
7 p.m. ET, FS Florida (Orlando), FS DetroitABOUT THE MAGIC (19-24):
Shooting guard Evan Fournier scored 19 points on 6-of-11 shooting and harassed Rockets superstar James Harden into a 1-of-17 performance from 3-point range in the 116-109 triumph. "It feels good, man, really, really good," Fournier told reporters. "It means a lot to have two wins against two really good teams. It feels good to be back home. How do we respond from this will be the question?" Vucevic continued his quiet All-Star campaign with 22 points, nine rebounds and six assists against Houston and he is averaging 20.1 points and 11.9 boards while shooting 52.6 percent from the floor.ABOUT THE PISTONS (18-24):
Monday's loss capped a 1-3 road trip but was not without positive moments as Detroit scored 59 points in the first half and had a chance down the stretch. "I love the way our guys competed," Pistons coach Dwane Casey told reporters. "We had some bonehead plays in the third quarter. I thought we played excellent basketball in the first half. Then again, we had some situations where we have to make better decisions on our self. Again, that's the style of play we want to play." Griffin scored a team-high 19 points in the loss after springing for 44 in a 109-104 win over the Los Angeles Clippers on Saturday.BUZZER BEATERS
1. Magic rookie C Mo Bamba (foot) sat out the last three games and is questionable for Wednesday.
2. Detroit PG Ish Smith (groin) returned from a 19-game absence on Monday and scored eight points in 19 minutes off the bench.
3. The teams split the first two meetings - both in Orlando - with the Magic earning a 109-107 victory in the most recent matchup on Dec. 30.PREDICTION:
Pistons 108, Magic 103
Stats and Records