Arenas magic

Gilbert Arenas says his problem is he’s being too passive

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Magic fans, the most recent comments by Gilbert Arenas should worry you.

Yes, you got a nice big-game win over the Lakers Sunday, but that does not totally erase the recent losses to the Bulls, Heat and Celtics. You need more consistent play, more wins over quality teams before we are convinced any corner was turned. And you need more consistent play out of your second unit guys.

Which brings us back to what Arenas told Chris Mannix of Sports Illustrated.

“When you have the ball so much and you are making plays and in attack mode all the time, your rhythm is always there,” Arenas said. “Coming off the bench, trying to get warm, by the time you get warm, you are coming out of the game. So you never get a true feeling for the game. I respect guys who can come in the game and just catch fire. There are so many scorers on this team, my mindset is I don’t need to come in and be aggressive because we have Ryan Anderson, we have J.J. Redick.”

Arenas thinks a change in mindset will help him get more comfortable coming off the bench.

“I think for us to be successful, I need to have to start trying to dominate the second unit,” Arenas said. “I think that’s how we had success early. When I look back at our games, when we were on the nine-game winning streak, I was dominating that second unit. I need to get back to that.”

Arenas has spent most of his career with a complete green light, something few players in the NBA ever get. But he was the man, he was the guy creating shots and taking the scoring burden on. Now, in Orlando, he is another cog in the system. A guy who has to get his points in the flow of the offense and defer to the guys who do have the green light.

That can be a hard adjustment. However, Arenas is shooting 35.2 percent overall and 15 percent from three in his last 10 games, so while we appreciate his need to get going it may not be best for him to be shooting more often.

Arenas, to his credit, is dealing with coming off the bench well. And there are times he needs to be more aggressive. But if that aggression comes at the expense of the system it hurts Orlando more than it helps.

But at least now you have a view into what Arenas is thinking.

Khris Middleton dunks, Jimmy Butler can’t stop him (VIDEO)

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Khris Middleton has more expectations and more pressure on him after a breakout season in Milwaukee, followed by him getting him PAID this summer.

Well, he looked pretty good on this play against the Bulls, making the steal then throwing down despite Jimmy Butler‘s efforts to stop him.

Middleton finished with 10 points on 5-of-7 shooting for the Bucks. However, Butler had the last laugh as he went off for 23 points on 12 shots and led the Bulls to the (meaningless) preseason win.

Somebody looks comfortable: Paul George drops 20 in first quarter

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Paul George‘s first experience starting as a power forward was going up against Anthony Davis — not just one of the best power forwards in the game, one of the handful of best players in the game period. That didn’t go well for George, and he wasn’t happy about it.

His second experience was in another preseason game Tuesday, going up against the Pistons and their four, Ersan İlyasova. He’s not quite as intimidating.

George scored 20 points on 7-of-8 shooting, 4-of-5 on threes — and that was just the first quarter (you can see it all in the video above).

As we have said before, George at the four is not a bad call by the Pacers, but some of that depends on the matchup. On the nights the Pacers face Davis or Blake Griffin or LaMarcus Aldridge or Zach Randolph (or a handful of others) the Pacers’ coaching staff is going to have to adjust. But there are a lot of nights where George at the four is going to force the other team to adjust, and that will play into the Pacers’ hands.