Magic Gaming Slips to 0-2 in SLAM OPEN Group Play With Series Loss to Grizz Gaming

The Lead

Magic Gaming fell to 0-2 to start the SLAM OPEN, the first of three 3v3 tournaments in 2022 as part of the Coinbase BLACKTOP SERIES, after losing their best-of-five series to Grizz Gaming 3-1 on Thursday night.

Game 1

Michael “BP” Diaz-Cruz showed why he’s one of the best 3v3 players in the world, going for 17 points and hitting the game-sealing 3-pointer in Grizz Gaming’s 21-10 victory. Formerly with the Kings and Hawks, BP made six of his seven shots overall, including five of his six from downtown. Matthew “Matty” Grant led Magic Gaming with six points, while Justin “Snubby” Stemerman recorded four points and three assists.

Game 2

Orlando and Memphis were neck and neck for most of Game 2 before the Grizzlies pulled away late for a 22-15 win. Justin “Jrod” Rodriguez wrapped up the victory with a triple from the left corner. Snubby led the Magic with 11 points.

Game 3

Robert “May” May knocked down two big 3-pointers, including one that put Orlando up 19-15, and Snubby, who scored a game-high 13 points, connected on a layup to seal the Magic’s 21-18 victory. Not only was BP held to just nine points, but he also turned the ball over three times.

Game 4

The Magic ran out of gas after their Game 3 win, as the Grizzlies took control early in Game 4 and cruised to a series-clinching 21-12 victory. Jordan “JMoney” Martinez, who won an NBA 2K League championship in Season 2 with T-Wolves Gaming, nailed a three from the right corner to end it. Snubby tallied eight points and two assists, while Matty had four points and May grabbed two rebounds.

Quote of the Night

“He’s an elite dribbler. I think there are guys out there that can match BP’s dribbling nowadays more so than in the past. He was really the best dribbler in the world for years. He’s an elite dribbler and he’s going to attack you that way and obviously he’s going to hit it when he’s open. When you’re able to do that, you’re going to be an elite scorer in three v. threes, and if you’re not able to force turnovers on him – like we did a little bit in Game Three which is why we were able to take that one – and when you’re not able to, he’s going to feel comfortable, he’s going to be moving well and he’s going to get open looks.” – Magic Gaming General Manager and Head Coach Jonah Edwards on BP

Key Stat

Snubby, now in his second season with Magic Gaming, totaled 36 points in this series. Orlando had originally acquired the dynamic scorer from Hornets Venom GT in November 2020.

Up Next

Magic Gaming will play for the third night in a row when they clash with the Gen.G Tigers of Shanghai on Friday at 10 p.m. ET. The Tigers beat the Grizzlies 3-1 behind strong play from Jaiden “OTTR” Frank on Wednesday before losing 3-1 on Thursday to Handlez, one of the top amateur teams competing in this tournament. The top two teams from each of the eight groups in the SLAM OPEN during remote play will advance to the round-of-16 in-person bracket play at the NBA 2K League Studio in Indianapolis.