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Published on April 02, 2024
Orlando Magic Seek to Bolster Playoff Positioning Against Struggling Portland Trail BlazersSource: Unsplash/Markus Spiske

In what's shaping up to be a David vs. Goliath scenario, the Orlando Magic, who've been flexing their defensive muscles all season, are slated to host the floundering Portland Trail Blazers at the Kia Center tonight at 7 p.m. ET. The Magic, sitting comfortably with a 43-31 record, are a stark contrast to the Trail Blazers' dismal 19-55 as they've suffered a crushing nine-game losing streak.

With eyes firmly on finishing their eight-game homestand strong, the Magic is hardly likely to show the Trail Blazers any mercy. Having trampled the competition at home against sub-.500 teams – they're unfazed with a 15-0 standing, as cited by NBA.com, they're poised to continue the trend.

 At stake for Orlando is more than just a win; it's about playoffs positioning as the season winds down to its last two weeks, according to SI.com.

Magic head coach Jamahl Mosley's focus remains razor-sharp, noting the importance of a victory at home. "Finishing strong is the most important piece for us right now, especially in front of our home fans," Mosley said, in a statement obtained by NBA.com. The team's forward, Joe Ingles, echoes this sentiment, highlighting Orlando's defensive prowess. "We're a top (defensive team) for a reason," Ingles stated, attributing low-scoring games to their stalwart defense.

Meanwhile, the Blazers, riddled with injuries, are anything but resigned to their fate. Despite their woes, defensively they're a team that can still pounce, keeping opponents on their toes with an average of 14.5 turnovers and 15.4 deflections per game.