The Magic, playing Milwaukee for the fourth time in 22 days, successfully completed the season sweep over the Bucks, thanks to 14 of 27 (51.9%) three point shooting and a strong defensive effort in the second half, holding the Bucks to 38 points for the 114-98 victory. The Magic did not need a fourth quarter comeback, as they did in their previous three wins over the Bucks, as the Magic took over the lead late in the third quarter and pulled away in the fourth.
Six Magic players scored in double figures, led by Dwight Howard with 28 points, 14 rebounds, 4 steals. Hedo Turkoglu had a solid all-around game, with 16 points, 9 assists, 5 rebounds. Ryan Anderson delivered with 16 points, 6 rebounds, 5 steals. Jason Richardson added 18 points with 5 rebounds, 3 assists, two steals. Jameer Nelson led the team with 10 assists. Chris Duhon and J.J. Redick played well off the bench, scoring 12 and 14 points, respectively. All of Duhon's points came from his 4 three point field goals in 5 attempts. Milwaukee's quick PG Brandon Jennings scored 27 points with 5 assists, and PF Ersan Ilyasova added 18 points, 7 rebounds.
|Team||Pace||Efficiency||eFG%||FT Rate||OReb%||TO Rate|
|Green denotes a stat better than the team's season average;|
red denotes a stat worse than the team's season average.
The Magic started out strong in the first quarter, with energy, excellent ball movement, and good shooting. They were able to maintain that strong start throughout the first, and led by as much as 36-19 after a Turkoglu three-pointer. The Magic settled for a 36-21 lead after one, as they shot 57.7% for the quarter, including 5 of 11 on threes. The Magic also had a superb assist/turnover ratio of 11/1. Howard scored 12 points on 6 of 7 shooting, with Richardson adding 10 points on 4 of 6 shooting. Milwaukee was held to 45% shooting.
Things turned around for Milwaukee in the second quarter, though, as the Magic had maybe their worst defensive quarter of the season. The Bucks outscored the Magic 39-25 in the second, while shooting 68.2%, including 4 of 6 on threes. The Magic started the quarter with a lineup of Duhon, Redick, Von Wafer, Earl Clark, and Glen Davis. The Bucks went on a 14-2 run to start the quarter and pulled within 38-35. Even though the starters returned afterwards for the Magic, the Bucks continued to play well in the quarter, eventually taking their first lead 58-57 after an Ilyasova three point play. The Bucks could have went into the half with the lead, as they led 60-58 and the ball for the last possession. Jennings, instead of holding for the last shot, inexplicably put up a three pointer with just under 7 seconds remaining which missed. Anderson grabbed the rebound, and threw to Turkoglu, who nailed a 30 foot three pointer just before the halftime buzzer as the Magic led 61-60 at the half.
For the half, both teams shot over 50%, with the Bucks at 57.1% and the Magic at 51.1%. The Magic were 8 of 16 on three-point attempts.
Much of the third quarter was very close, as neither team had more than a two point lead, with the Bucks leading 78-76 after a Jennings basket with 3:19 remaining. Bucks' coach Scott Skiles elected to try the "Hack-a-Howard" strategy with around 4 minutes remaining in the quarter, intentionally fouling Howard on three possessions. Howard split the six free throws. The Magic took the lead back for good after a Turkoglu layup with 2:49 remaining to make the score 79-78 Magic. Duhon tacked on two three-pointers to close the third, as the Magic led 85-80 going into the final quarter.
The Magic built their lead to double digits early in the final quarter 92-80 after a Redick jumper. Carlos Delfino hit a three pointer for the Bucks to pull them within 92-84 with just over 8 minutes remaining. That would be as close as Milwaukee would get, as a Turkoglu three-point play and a Redick three-point shot put the Magic up 14 with 7:15 remaining. The Magic led by as much as 18 points on the way to the 114-98 victory, their 13th in a row over the Bucks in Orlando.
Other game notes:
-Duhon's 4 three-pointers were the most threes he has made in a game while with the Magic, while his 12 points was the second-most points he has scored in a Magic uniform.
-Anderson had all five of his steals in the first half, which was a career-high for him.
-The Magic outscored the Bucks 53-38 in the second half, and shot 52.9% in the half compared to 35.1% for the Bucks.
-The Magic were able to survive 17 second-half turnovers and 16 of 27 (59.3%) free throw shooting overall.
-The Magic outrebounded Milwaukee 46-33, including 14-10 on the offensive boards. They also outshot the Bucks 51.9% to 46.8%, including 51.9% to 37.5% on three pointers.
Here is the game box score.