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Game Preview: Suns continue long road trip against the Magic

After giving up 84 points in the paint against the Pacers, the Suns look to lock things up defensively against the Magic.

Orlando Magic v Phoenix Suns Photo by Chris Coduto/Getty Images

Who: Phoenix Suns (26-19) @ Orlando Magic (23-22)

When: 4:00pm AZ Time

Where: Kia Center, Orlando, Florida

Watch: 3TV and Arizona’s Family Sports

Listen: KMVP 98.7


Coming off a wild offensive performance in a loss to the Indiana Pacers Friday night, the Phoenix Suns look to start another winning streak tonight against the Orlando Magic.

With the Magic falling back down to earth this season after a hot start of 16-7, they have gone 7-15 since. They are the opposite of the Suns who have turned the corner and are headed in the right direction after winning seven games in-a-row, before their loss Friday night.

A big reason for the Suns' recent success has been the play of their Big Three, Devin Booker, Kevin Durant, and Bradley Beal. List them in any order you would like, they are contributing at a high rate, but not as high as Booker as of late.

After scoring 62 in Gainbridge Fieldhouse, Booker added his 4th arena scoring record to the collection, along with the following:

Missing out on the All-Star starter selections that were released Thursday night, you can say that his performance had something to do with the snub. Booker refused to acknowledge so, but we all know that it is tiresome to go through the same thing every year with Book snubbed as an All-Star starter. And like us, he is probably just over it and focused on the next game against the Magic.

Probable Starters

Suns

  • Bradley Beal
  • Devin Booker
  • Grayson Allen
  • Kevin Durant
  • Jusuf Nurkic

Magic

  • Markelle Fultz
  • Jalen Suggs
  • Franz Wagner
  • Paolo Banchero
  • Wendell Carter Jr.

Injury Report

Suns

  • Jusuf Nurkic (questionable)
  • Bradley Beal (questionable)
  • Bol Bol (out)
  • Damion Lee (out)

Magic

  • Gary Harris (out)

Uniform Matchup

What to Watch For

One thing we don’t have to worry about is the three-point shot from the Magic. They are shooting 34% (last in the league), hitting 10.7 of 31.4 attempts per game. The Suns' perimeter defense has been suspect off-and-on during their recent seven-game win streak but has been better than earlier in the season.

On New Year's Eve against the Suns, the Magic were unable to force their way to the free-throw line, shooting 11-12 in a 112-107 loss. That is normally their specialty, getting to the line and attempting 26.4 per game. The Suns are right behind them, averaging 25.2 per game.

This will be a slower-paced game, focused on defense, and playing a little more physical to start. The Pacers game on Friday showed that the Suns can keep up with a high-paced offense, but taking it easy especially on a long road trip, will do the Suns good.

Prediction

Booker will go off again. For how many points? I am not sure. The man is still out to prove something after being snubbed as an all-star starter.

I predict another great start to the game, 20+ to get this Suns team out to the hot start they need, leading to a blow-out victory.

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