We’re about to find out what the Pelicans (25-32, 16-10 home) are made of on Tuesday when they host the Magic (25-32, 10-17 away) at Smoothie King Center. Tip off is scheduled for 8:00 p.m. EST.
New Orleans has lost seven of its last ten games and has been dogged by porous defense. The Pelicans rank 25th in defensive rating and are giving up 114.7 points per game. They’re 17th in field goals allowed and 26th in three-pointers allowed.
They’ll be tested from start to finish as they face Orlando. The Magic have the NBA’s 24th best offensive rating and are averaging 105.2 points per game on 42.0% shooting from the floor and 35.0 from beyond the arc. They’re 23rd in rebounds and 14th in assists and have been led this season by Nikola Vucevic, who is putting up 20.5 points per contest. Defensively, they’re giving up 107.5 points per game on 218.0% shooting from the floor and 36.0% shooting from deep.
This is the first time this year these two rivals have met, but they’ve both been busy lately.
The Magic are fresh off a 124-108 win against the Hawks in Atlanta in which they shot 13-37 from the three-point line. Nikola Vucevic led the team with 19 points. The Pelicans, meanwhile, are hot off of a 99-90 loss against the Grizzlies in Memphis in which they handed out 25 dimes and pulled down 61 rebounds.
The Pelicans are 4.5-point favorites, with an over/under total of 226. That’s a generous point spread, so proceed with caution if you’re considering wagering on the Pelicans. Bear in mind that Orlando is 30-26-1 against the spread this season and 26-31-0 over/under. New Orleans, on the other hand, is 27-29-1 ATS and 30-27-0 over/under.