Orlando Magic vs. Cleveland Cavaliers Game 2 Preview and Pick

Orlando Magic +9 at Cleveland Cavaliers -9 O/U 188 8:30 PM ET Friday May 22, 2009 on TNT

By Jason Green at Predictem.com

The Magic lead this best of 7 series 1-0.

Well, I really chit the bed last night with my Lakers pick. Back strong today with a winner!

Tonight the Orlando Magic are in Cleveland to play the Cavaliers after shocking them by winning game 1 in this series. Are the Magic going to make this a series? Nobody really gave them a chance against King James and the Cavs in this series, but now they have home court advantage in the series, which will be huge. After staying with the Cavs for most of the game they out-scored them by 5 points in the 4th quarter and Rashard Lewis hit the game winner to give the Magic a 1-0 lead in this series.

In game 1 LeBron had a monster game going for 49 points, but the two other Cavs’ scorers struggled, as Delonte West and Mo Williams did combine for 28 points, but they only combined to shoot 10/29 from the floor including only going 5/16 from 3-point land. On the other hand Dwight Howard also had a big game, but he was given support on offense by Lewis who not only hit the game winning shot but also scored 22 points on 9/13 shooting including going 3/4 from downtown. The Cavs need to win this game, as if they lose tonight and head back to the Sunshine State down 0-2 they will be in big trouble.

Hoops bookies have the Cavs as 9-point favorites in this game with a total around 188. The Cavs are posted at -500 as major favorites and the Magic are posted at +400.

The Magic won game 1 on Wednesday night 107-106. The high scorer for the magic in that game was Dwight Howard going for 30 points on 14/20 shooting and he also grabbed 13 boards. For the game the Magic shot well going 43/78 for a FG% of 55.1%. The high scorer for the Cavs in game 1 was LeBron James going for 49 points on 20/30 shooting. For the game the Cavs shot 43/88 for a FG% of 48.9%.

This season the Magic ranked 4th in scoring (101 ppg) and the Cavaliers ranked 13th (100.3 ppg). On D the Cavaliers were the best in the league ranking 1st in points allowed (91.3 ppg) and the Magic ranked 6th (94.4 ppg). The Cavaliers were a better team on the boards this year, as they had a rebounding differential of +3.3 rpg and the Magic were at +1.1 rpg.

This season the Magic were an NBA best 49-32-1 ATS and Cavs also solid at 48-33-1. In terms of Over/Under games this season the Magic were 41-40-1 and the Cavs were 37-44-1.

On the injury front neither team is reporting any significant injuries.

This season the Cavs did not win because MVP James was scoring tons of points every night but because the Cavs were the best defensive team only allowing opponents to score 91.3 ppg. In game 1 their defense struggled, as they allowed the Magic to score around 107 points and shoot just over 55% from the field.

The Cavs have to put the Magic away when they have a biog lead, as after the first quarter in game 1 the Cavs were up by 14 and by half were up by 15. After halftime the Magic shot 59% from the field, went 7/13 on 3s and outscored the Cavs 59-43.

Hedo Turkoglu had a great game and took the reigns as the facilitator on offense, as he dished out 14 assists and also scored 15 points.

The Magic would have won this game by more if they had held onto the rock better, as in game 1 they had 13 turnovers and the Cavs only had 5.

Williams and West have to shoot the rock better tonight and give King James some support on the offensive end of the court.

The Cavs could also use a little help from their bench, as in game 1 Joe Smith was the only reserve that scored and he only had 5 points.

The Cavs have to clamp down on defense tonight and cut off the passing lanes, as one of the main reasons the Magic won in game 1 was that they were moving the ball around with 32 assists in the game and they were hitting all of their open shots.

The Cavs need to get back to playing solid D or they may lose this game and head to Orlando down 0-2.

Jason’s Pick: I look for Cleveland to rebound strong by building a lead and not blowing it this time.