Prediction, Preview, and Odds
#505 Orlando Magic 205 vs.
#506 Toronto Raptors -850
Tuesday, April 23, 2019 at 7:05pm EDT
Scotiabank Arena, Toronto
Written by Chris Kubala

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#505 Orlando
#506 Toronto
43-43
61-25
46-37-3
40-44-2
38-48
45-39-2
106
113
106
107

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It’s a first-round battle in the NBA playoffs coming to you live from north of the border. The seventh-seeded Orlando Magic is on the road trying to stave off elimination as they face the second-seeded Toronto Raptors in Game 5 of their best of seven set on Tuesday night. Orlando clawed out a 104-101 win on the road in the opening game of the series Saturday afternoon to draw first blood. Toronto bounced back by taking Game 2 111-82 at home last Tuesday night. The Raptors followed that up by taking Game 3 98-93 on the road Friday night and then rolled to a 107-85 Game 4 win on the road Sunday night. The Raptors lead the all-time regular season series 46-39 though the teams split four meetings this season, each winning once at home and once on the road. The Magic won the lone playoff series between the teams, winning a first-round series four games to one in the first round of the 2008 Eastern Conference playoffs. That gives them a 5-4 edge in head to head playoff victories.

Orlando Magic Hoping to Extend Series to Game 6

Orlando won the opening game of the series but things have unraveled from there with three straight losses putting them on the brink of elimination. The Magic has to find a way to win north of the border in order to send the series back to the Sunshine State and avoid elimination. Orlando was within two after the opening quarter but was outscored 30-16 in the second to trail by 16 at the half. The Magic couldn’t get closer than 10 the rest of the way and put their backs to the wall. Orlando shot 42 percent from the field, including seven of 33 from three-point range, and lost the rebounding battle 45-34. Aaron Gordon paced the Magic with 25 points in the loss.

The Magic has been below average in the postseason putting the ball in the basket: they are 16th (or dead last) in the league with 91 points per game. Orlando stands tied for 12th on the glass with 42.3 boards per contest and is 14th with 18.8 assists a night. The Magic is 7th in scoring defense as they allow 104.3 points a game. The Magic is 15th in the league in field goal percentage as they shoot 38.9 percent as a team. Orlando is 10th with 10.8 made threes per game while the team is tied for 14th in three-point percentage as they shoot 30.7 percent from downtown. D.J. Augustin averages 12.3 points plus 3.8 assists per game in the playoffs. Aaron Gordon puts up a team-high 16.3 points plus 7.3 boards a night while Evan Fournier is adding 13 points per game. The Magic has to get more from Terrence Ross and Nikola Vucevic (12.5 points, 8.3 rebounds, 37.5 percent shooting) if they hope to hang in this series.

Toronto Raptors Look to Close Things Out

Toronto has reeled off three straight wins to seize control of the series and they clearly have the upper hand at this point. The Raptors seized home court advantage back with the win in Game 3 and then took a stranglehold with the Game 4 romp. Toronto turned a two-point edge after the opening quarter into a 16-point halftime lead. The Raptors put the game away with a 16-4 fourth-quarter run and cruised to the victory. The Raptors shot 53.3 percent from the field, including 11 of 28 from three-point range, and controlled the boards by a 45-34 margin. Kawhi Leonard paced Toronto with 34 points in the victory.

The Raptors currently are 10th in the league during the postseason by averaging 104.3 points per game. Toronto is near the bottom of the pack in the league on the glass, ranking 11th with 43.8 boards per game. The Raptors are 6th in the league in assists with 24.3 dimes a night. Toronto is 1st in scoring defense as they give up 91 points per game. The Raptors are 4th in the league in field goal percentage by shooting 47.8 percent from the field. Toronto is tied for 8th in the league by sinking 11.3 three pointers per game. The Raptors are 8th in the league in three-point shooting as they hit 35.4 percent from beyond the arc. Kawhi Leonard leads the team in the postseason by pouring in 28 points per game. Pascal Siakam continues his strong play from the regular season as he puts up 22.3 points plus nine boards a game. Getting more production from guys like Marc Gasol and Serge Ibaka would help immensely for the Raptors.

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Orlando drew first blood in the series but has been blown out in two of the three games since. Vucevic has been a relative non-factor in the series as he’s been negated seemingly at will by the Raptors. He has to find a way to turn things around if the Magic hopes to stay in the series. Orlando really doesn’t have a favorable matchup on the defensive end of the floor against Leonard, who has had his way with them in the series. The Raptors are the better team and they have showed it in the last three games in the set. Playing at home in front of their fans, you have to think they close things out here.

Prediction: Toronto Raptors -11.5

Full-Game Total Pick

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We’ve seen four low scoring affairs in this series. Only Game 1 had both teams go over the century mark in points and it’s been inconsistent from there. Toronto went over the number in both Games 2 and 4 in one-sided triumphs while Game 3 saw both teams fail to break the 100-point barrier. The highest combined point total between the teams was the 205 points that we saw in Game 1. Seeing that the last three totals have topped out at 193 points, is there any hope for this one to go over the number?

The under is 4-0 in the Magic’s last 4 overall, 4-0 in their last 4 games vs. a team with a winning % above .600, 4-0 in their last 4 vs. Eastern Conference foes and 4-0 in their last 4 vs. a team with a winning straight up record. Toronto has seen the under go 5-0 in their last five overall, 8-0 in their last 8 Tuesday games, 5-0-1 in their last 6 games following a straight up win and 7-0 in their last 7 Conference Quarterfinals games. Given that we haven’t seen things explode offensively for either side in this series, look for this one to end up under the total as well.

Prediction: Under 206

Written By Chris Kubala

Christopher Kubala has been crunching stats and following sports for over 30 years. His in depth analysis and passion for sports have led him to writing books about sports, regularly being featured on sports talk radio and as the go-to person for any obscure trivia. He keeps an eye on transactions and statistics like a hawk, especially when it comes to football, both the NFL and college, the NHL, the NBA and college basketball and MLB.