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NBA Orlando Magic

JJ Redick: Absence Makes The Heart Grow Fonder

Daniel Shirey – USPRESSWIRE

J.J. Redick was sidelined Sunday night against the Toronto Raptors after reportedly suffering from flu-like symptoms. And his presence, or lack thereof, was undoubtedly felt as the Orlando Magic fell 97-86.

The Magic shot an atrocious 32 of 80(40%) on the evening, and only converted 4 of their 13(31%) of their attempts from downtown. A far cry from Redick’s personal averages of 46% from the field and 38% from deep, as they rank 12th and 22nd among shoot guards respectively.

His ability to stretch the floor is truly an invaluable commodity to his teammates, as was alluded to by Arron Afflalo on social media night when a fan asked him, “How is the dynamic of you and J.J. Redick on the floor together?”

That said, don’t let his sweet stroke downplay the wholesomeness of his skill set. Redick actually ranks 4th in league among shooting guards for assists per game at 5.5, and is second only to Jameer Nelson for Orlando. He’s also ranked 10th in the league in free throw percentage, shooting 86% on the season.

Monday night’s loss to the Atlanta Hawks was another testament to just how pertinent Redick is for Orlando’s offense. As he took the floor despite still feeling ill and shot 1 of 7 from a season-low two points. It was the Magic’s lowest scoring output as a team for the season in the loss.

Lastly, all three of the Magic’s wins this season have come off nights were Redick has scored at least 20 points. If that doesn’t speak volumes to how integral he is to Orlando’s success, I don’t know what will.