It has been about six months since the Orlando Magic took the court, and Monday night, we will get our first preview of the new-look team. The Magic will visit the Memphis Grizzlies in their first preseason matchup of the season.
New Magic Head Coach Frank Vogel has made it clear as to what he has emphasized to this point. In the seven practices they have undergone, Vogel has urged his team to play with intensity, speed and physicality. He hopes those characteristics turn into habits for his squad.
Due to injuries, many key players for Orlando will sit out.
Point guard Elfrid Payton will not play because he suffered a strained hip flexor. Forward Aaron Gordon will also be out with a sprained left ankle. Veteran shooting guard Jodie Meeks, one of the offseason additions, is recovering from surgery to stabilize a bone in his foot.
Big man Serge Ibaka, another player acquired in the offseason, is also out for tonight’s game. He has missed three consecutive practices. It is reportedly due to knee soreness, not injury.
With Ibaka out, it will provide more chances for returning big man Nikola Vucevic and former Toronto Raptor Bismack Biyombo to play simultaneously.
Though Meeks and Ibaka will not play, other offseason pick-ups will play their first game in a Magic uniform. Guard D.J. Augustin, forward Bismack Biyombo, and Jeff Green are among the additions who will see the court tonight.
— Nikola Vucevic (@NikolaVucevic) October 3, 2016
Tip-off at FedEx Forum is set for 8 p.m.