USA TODAY Sports
This was barely watchable as a basketball game. The Magic played poorly and the Suns played just a touch worse leading to their seventh straight loss and even more questions about this team going forward.
This was far from good, pristine basketball. At times, one wouldn't dare call it basketball and that is coming from both the Phoenix Suns and the Orlando Magic's perspective. Both teams played a bad brand of basketball, but one executed the game plan more than the other and they got their eighth win of the season.
When all the dust settled the Magic (8-12) finished off the Suns (7-15) to keep them in their nosedive towards the bottom of the NBA standings.
In the end this loss was unlike the others the team has suffered this season and head coach Alvin Gentry felt that, and expressed it in his post game comments.
"It's a real frustrating loss, real disappointing loss. You know, we are playing spot basketball. We play good for two minutes then we are bad for seven, then we're good for five and we're bad for three. You can't have any consistency and you just can't win basketball games in this league when you play that way. We are not doing a good job of making basketball plays: cuts, shot selection, and things like that. We are just not playing very good."
The execution has been horrible for this team as they shoot the ball out of the offense and once the team gets slightly frazzled they come out of their routine looking for answers. The answers are in the game plan. Sometimes they will fail you and other times they will benefit you, but in the end the team is not buying into the game plan.
One player Gentry has faith in is his back-up point guard turned starter tonight, Sebastian Telfair.
"I think he played extremely hard, but didn't shoot the ball well. I never have a problem with him. I know he is one of the guys on our team that is going to give you everything that he has got. He is an unbelievable competitor and if he doesn't shoot the ball well he doesn't shoot the ball well. We have to have 12 guys doing that, not just four or five."
Telfair (or Bassy to his teammates) found out that he was starting as he went through the tunnel to head to the court for the game. Normal starting point guard Goran Dragic was under the weather and was ruled out just before the tip-off.
"When I got here they said Drag (Goran Dragic) was a little sick and he went through shoot around, but he wasn't going to play. This was my first start of the season so I tried to approach it well."
As a point guard Bassy knows he has the responsibility and the opportunity to pull back the reigns on some of the Iso Ball the team gets into, but it is also a team dynamic.
"Move the ball around, create shots for each other, and not only the point guard, but everyone driving and kicking out to somebody else. Not just the point guard, but we have to do that as a team. As a point guard you want to come in and make a play or come down and call a controlled play where we all know how to get a good shot."
Bringing guys back down to earth during a run needs to happen and the best way to do that is by getting the ball to the hot hand. At the half Luis Scola had eight points on 4-7 shooting. After that, Scola had three points on 1-2 shooting to end the game. How does that happen and more importantly, how does that change?
"(Long silence)... Sorry, but I don't know. I wish I did, but I just do not know."