Magic Gaming Defeats Kings Guard Gaming to Stay Alive in SLAM OPEN Bracket Play
March 22, 2023
ORLANDO – Needing a victory to avoid elimination in the SLAM OPEN, Magic Gaming came away with a bracket play victory to keep their tournament dreams alive.
After dropping the series opener, Magic Gaming rattled off three straight wins to defeat Kings Guard Gaming on Wednesday night and send Sacramento packing in the first 3v3 tournament of the NBA 2K League season.
“We needed this (series) really bad,” said Magic Gaming power forward Matthew “Matty” Grant. “We came in here last night (as a team) and we had a pretty long talk about how things are going, how we need to stay together, and how long the season is. I feel like we got out some things that we needed to get out and I feel like now, we’re on the right track.”
Game 1: Magic Gaming fell into an early hole and struggled to climb out of it as they dropped a 22-13 decision to Kings Guard Gaming in the series opener.
Sacramento point guard Reginald “Regg” Nash Jr. went 7-for-8 from the floor on his way to a game-high 17 points.
Orlando floor general Joshua “unguardable” Hunter led his squad with 11.
Game 2: After a disappointing series opener, Magic Gaming answered back in the subsequent contest. Orlando used a balanced offensive attack and a staunch defensive effort to earn a 23-17 victory over Sacramento.
Unguardable notched 10 points and four assists, small forward Jarvis “Simptoms” Thompson scored seven, and Matty tallied six points and three rebounds.
“They play basically all the defense, and they have to knock down the biggest shots that matter after (sometimes) not shooting almost the whole game,” said unguardable of his teammates. “They probably have the biggest impact.”
Game 3: Behind strong offensive performances from Simptoms and unguardable, Magic Gaming never trailed in a 21-17 triumph.
Simptoms went a perfect 5-for-5 from the floor on his way to 12 points, while unguardable notched nine points and four assists. Orlando shot a scorching 90 percent from the field.
Game 4: Despite falling into an early hole due to miscues and turnovers, Magic Gaming rallied back for a 21-18 victory over Kings Guard Gaming to take the contest and the series.
Unguardable lived up to his moniker going a perfect 9-for-9 from the floor on his way to a game-high 19 points. The No. 5 overall pick in the 2022 2KL Draft scored the final four points of the contest.
“My hat is off to that kid for the final game,” Matty said of unguardable, who he also credited for keeping the team’s spirits up after a slow start to the matchup.
Up Next: Magic Gaming returns to action in SLAM OPEN bracket play on Friday at 8:15 p.m. ET when they’ll play the loser of the Pacers Gaming vs. Knicks Gaming series. If Orlando is able to emerge victorious in that matchup, they’ll play another series later that same night.
“We really feel like we’re still one of the best teams in the league,” said Matty. “Our record may not reflect it, but this room believes that.”