This will be the second meeting of the season between the two sides. They previously clashed last week when the Dubs registered a victory on the back of a 40-point outing from Stephen Curry. The Orlando Magic will rely on the big man in the middle, Nikola Vucevic, to post a big performance at home to stand a chance against the red-hot Golden State Warriors lineup.
Golden State Warriors Preview
The Golden State Warriors are right in the hunt for a playoff berth thanks to Stephen Curry's MVP caliber season. The Warriors are coming in with a two-game winning streak that has earned them the 7th spot in the West with a 16-13 record.
The Warriors defeated the 2020 NBA Eastern Conference champs, the Miami Heat, in their last matchup. In a rare observation in today's NBA, Golden State had four players scoring above 20 points to secure their 16th win of the season. Kent Bazemore and Stephen Curry combined for a total of 51 points between them.
Orlando Magic Preview
The Orlando Magic have a lot of ground to cover this season to make it back into the playoff picture. After starting the season with a bang, the Magic have slowed down and are now 11-18 in the season and are currently occupying the 12th spot in the East.
However, the Magic are coming off a big win in their previous matchup against the New York Knicks. Terrence Ross had the hot hand on the night, dropping 30 points in as many minutes. Nikola Vucevic had another double-double performance with 16 points and 16 boards to go along with five assists for his efforts.
With winning momentum behind them, the Orlando Magic could give the Dubs a run for their money at the Amway Center tonight.
Warriors vs Magic Injury updates
The Golden State Warriors will continue to play small ball in this contest as James Wiseman and Kevon Looney have not been cleared to participate in this matchup. Draymond Green, who was on the sidelines for the game against the Heat, could miss out on another game on Friday night.
The Warriors lost Klay Thompson to a season-ending injury before the season tipped-off. Considering everything the Dubs have faced this campaign, their record speaks volumes of the perseverance they have displayed under Stephen Curry and Steve Kerr's leadership.
Meanwhile, the Orlando Magic's season has been riddled with injuries this season. Aaron Gordon, the Magic's dynamic frontcourt player, will miss several weeks of action due to a left ankle sprain. Rookie Cole Anthony will be out until the All-Star break as he recovers from a rib fracture.
Evan Fournier and James Ennis III have been listed as questionable to return ahead of this game. The Magic suffered a huge blow when they lost Markelle Fultz and Jonathan Isaac to season-ending injuries and have not been able to recover from their absence.
Warriors vs. Magic Predicted Line-ups
The Golden State Warriors are on the rise with their floor general, Stephen Curry, leading the charge from the front. Coach Steve Kerr will probably use the same starting five from their matchup against the Heat.
Draymond Green has been listed as questionable for this matchup. However, there is a good chance he will suit up for this game and could rejoin the team as the temporary primary center.
Alternatively, Mychal Mulder could resume his role as point guard, bumping Andrew Wiggins or Juan Toscano-Anderson into the center position. Steph will aim for a better shooting night as he features in the backcourt.
Kelly Oubre Jr., Juan Toscano-Anderson, and Andrew Wiggins will have to play the jack of all trades as they face the daunting task of containing the in-form Nikola Vucevic.
Meanwhile, the Orlando Magic will fancy their chances this time around. The team will see the return of Evan Fournier, Michael Carter-Williams, Al-Farouq Aminu, and Chasson Randle - the four players who missed the previous clash between the Magic and the Warriors.
Fournier returned to the fold adding 19 points in 31 minutes against the Knicks. His condition is being monitored on a day-to-day basis due to the unpredictability of back spasms.
The Magic's backcourt will feature Terrence Ross and Michael Carter-Williams as the two guards. Dwayne Bacon and Gary Clark will come in as the two forwards who will play the wing position in this matchup. The highlight of the game will be the post area as the blazing Nikola Vucevic attempts to exploit the short-sized Warriors lineup.
Golden State Warriors Predicted Lineup
PG Mychal Mulder, SG Stephen Curry, SF Kelly Oubre Jr., PF Juan Toscano-Anderson, C Andrew Wiggins
Orlando Magic Predicted Lineup
PG Terrence Ross, SG Michael Carter-Williams, SF Dwayne Bacon, PF Gary Clark, C Nikola Vucevic