NBA Preview from The Sports Network|
Saturday, January 12th
(All times Eastern)
Orlando Magic (12-23) at Los Angeles Clippers (28-8), 3:30 p.m.
(Sports Network) - Just because the Orlando Magic have lost 10 in a row
doesn't mean the Los Angeles Clippers can take them lightly when the two teams
collide Saturday at Staples Center.
The Clippers are 3-0 so far on a four-game homestand, which concludes with
what should be an easy test versus the Magic. Los Angeles posted its 13th
straight win at home with a 99-93 victory over the Dallas Mavericks Wednesday
night as Chris Paul scored 19 points and handed out 16 assists.
Los Angeles had 21 turnovers converted into 23 Dallas points and shot 48.1
percent for the game (10-of-24 3-pointers).
"We're better than we played tonight," Paul said after the Clippers improved
to 18-3 at home. "We'll take the win but we know we can play better."
Clippers reserve Matt Barnes scored 19 points and grabbed seven rebounds,
while Blake Griffin recorded a double-double with 15 points and 13 boards for
the Clippers, whose 13-game home winning streak is a franchise best. The Clips
haven't suffered defeat as the host since Nov. 26 versus New Orleans and are
30-4 in the last 34 regular-season games at home.
Veteran forward Grant Hill (knee) is questionable Saturday and hasn't played
all season. He is three games shy of 1,000 in his career and signed with the
Clippers as a free agent in July.
After hosting the Magic, L.A. will play three straight on the road against
Memphis, Houston and Minnesota.
Orlando hasn't won since Dec. 19 versus Washington and is mired in a 10-game
slide -- the longest since a 13-game drought from March 13-April 10, 2004.
The Magic dropped a 108-105 decision at Denver the last time out on Wednesday
as Andrew Nicholson and former Nugget Arron Afflalo scored 12 points apiece,
DeQuan Jones added 11 points and Nikola Vucevic recorded a double-double with
10 points and 14 boards.
Jameer Nelson and J.J. Redick scored 20 and 17 points, respectively.
"It's 10 games in a row. I don't know what else to say except we have to play
better and win," said Afflalo, who was acquired from Denver in the four-team
deal that sent Dwight Howard to the Lakers and Andrew Bynum to Philadelphia.
Denver went to the foul line 36 times, making 22 free throws, and the Magic
were sent to the charity stripe on 10 occasions (9-of-10). Orlando had a 94-87
lead late in the game until Denver posted a deciding 17-5 run.
Orlando will try to end a four-game road losing streak and is 0-2 on a four-
game sojourn, which concludes Monday against the Wizards. The Magic are 5-11
away from central Florida, last winning on the road Dec. 15 at Charlotte.
The Magic hope to have forward Hedo Turkoglu Saturday and he's been hampered
by a sore left hand. Turkoglu is averaging 4.0 points and 2.8 boards.
Los Angeles defeated Orlando, 107-102, in overtime in the only meeting between
the teams last season on Feb. 6, ending a nine-game slide in the process.
Orlando has won four straight after losing its last four at the Clippers.
01/12 10:35:31 ET