The Orlando Magic have lost all three of their games against the Cleveland Cavaliers this season. And when the teams meet for the fourth, and final, time tonight, Magic coach Jacque Vaughn expects to stress the importance of keeping the Cavaliers off the offensive glass.
The Cavaliers are averaging 11.3 offensive rebounds per game against the Magic this season.
Although that's less than the Cavaliers' usual average of 12.1 offensive boards per game, it's still a concern.
"Their bigs are extremely active," Vaughn said Tuesday.
"If they're able to penetrate and get into the lane and offensive rebound, then we have problems."
The Cavaliers will be without center Anderson Varejao, who has an injured right shoulder. Varejao is a tenacious rebounder, and he grabbed a career-high 25 rebounds when Cleveland beat Orlando 87-81 in overtime on Jan. 2 at Quicken Loans Arena.
The availability of All-Star point guard Kyrie Irving, who has missed eight consecutive games because of a left biceps strain, is expected to be determined between the Cavaliers' shootaround this morning and tipoff.
The Magic are 0-33 this season in games in which they've been outrebounded.
They're 21-20 in games they've had as many or more rebounds than their opponent.
Rookie center Dewayne Dedmon played 15 minutes in the Magic's 98-93 loss to the Toronto Raptors on Sunday night.
Dedmon scored two points, gathered two rebounds and blocked one shot, but his impact went a bit deeper.
The Magic outscored the Raptors by nine points when Dedmon was on the floor.
"He doesn't have any clue of whether or not he's going to play in a specific game, but he's ready," Vaughn said. "He comes in and has a great energy about him, an aggressiveness about him. I think that's the best thing that he's done. He's just been ready to play. He has no idea when he's going to play. That's tough for a player."
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