Tuesday's game turned early because of foul trouble, but not the way you'd imagine. It was the Magic that saw two starters sidelined by a pair of quick fouls, which proved a blessing in disguise.
Hedo Turkoglu's fouls put the superior Quentin Richardson in the game, while Dwight Howard's rare stint on the bench forced Orlando to diversify its offense. Guards Jameer Nelson and J.J. Redick took control of the Magic attack and responded with outstanding play. By the time Howard returned to the game, Orlando had doubled the Hawks' score and built a lead the poor-scoring visitors would have been hard pressed to overcome. ...
The challenge for Orlando now is to maintain that offensive flow while making Howard (who took just four shot attempts in 29 minutes) a bigger factor. It might be advisable to begin the game playing outside-in and look to establish Howard later, after Jason Collins is on the bench. I'd also love to see more of Quentin Richardson and Redick on the wings. Having that duo in the game allows the Magic to defend both Jamal Crawford and Joe Johnson effectively without sacrificing anything in terms of shooting.
Tellingly, Orlando was just +4 with Turkoglu on the floor as compared to +21 in Richardson's 26 minutes.