Orlando Magic coach Jacque Vaughn wants his team to focus more, especially early in the game, according to the Orlando Sentinel's Josh Robbins.
Vaughn addressed the problem after practice Monday:
"The game is more than physical," Vaughn said after the Magic finished their shootaround at Philips Arena. "There's a mental aspect to the game.
"So, it's OK that when you're in your room in the afternoon that you're thinking about your responsibilities for that night. That's what you are doing for your job. You're a professional basketball player. Whether it's matchups, whether it's schemes, whether it's an approach to the game, you can think about that before the game starts. It's OK. Coach said it's OK to do that."
After starting the season 2-0, the Magic have gone just 1-7 since. After beating the Detroit Pistons on Friday night, 110-106, the Magic are back on a two-game losing streak.
The Magic's offense, specifically, has been sub par this season. They scored 75 or less points four times this season, including Monday night's 81-72 loss to the Atlanta Hawks. On Nov. 9, the Magic managed just 68 points in a blowout loss to the Brooklyn Nets.
According to Robbins, the first quarter has been a big problem for Orlando. The Magic have trailed their nine opponents this season in the first quarter "by an average maximum margin of 9.9 points."
The Magic will try to focus more when they host the Pistons on Wednesday night at 7 p.m. ET. Orlando will finish the week with games against the Cleveland Cavaliers on Friday and the Boston Celtics on Sunday.