The NBA Orlando Magic basketball team plays in the Eastern Conference’s Southeast Division in the National Basketball Association. The Magic are based out of Orlando, Florida and play at Amway Center.
In 1989, the Magic joined the NBA as an expansion team. Notable NBA stars including Shaquille O’Neal, Grant Hill, Penny Hardaway, Tracy McGrady, Dwight Howard, Steve Francis, Gilbert Arenas and Vince Carter have played for the Magic. In 21 years, Orlando has been in the playoffs 12 times.
In 1992, the Magic got the first pick of the NBA’s Draft Lottery and selected Shaquille O’Neal. The Magic went 41-41, improving their previous season’s record by 20 games. However, they missed the playoffs. In 1993, the Magic once against received the first draft pick and selected Chris Webber. However, the Magic made a deal with the Golden State Warriors and traded Webber in exchange for Anfernee “Penny” Hardaway in addition to three first round future draft picks. The Magic, with their combination of Hardaway and O’Neal, become one of the NBA’s most dominant teams. They went 50-32 during the 93-94 season and made it into the playoffs for the first time but where swept by the Pacers.
The Magic acquired Horace Grant before the start of the 1994-95 season. The Magic went 57-25 and advanced all the way into the NBA Finals where they were defeated by the Houston Rockets. In 1995-96, the Magic went 60-22 and won their division once again but were defeated at the Eastern Conference Finals by the Chicago Bulls, who went 72-10 that year. After the 95-96 season, Shaquille O’Neal left the Magic for the Los Angeles Lakers.
The Magic won their third division title and returned to the playoffs in 2008 for the first time since 1996. They defeated the Toronto Raptors in the first round but lost the next round to the Detroit Pistons. In 2008-09, the Magic made it all the way into the NBA Finals but were defeated by the Los Angeles Lakers. In 2009-10, the Magic won their third division championship in row and reached the playoffs for the fourth consecutive year. They were defeated by the Boston Celtics at the Eastern Conference Finals.