Here is my list along with a brief summary of the most memorable games the Orlando Magic played this season, in no particular order.
November 2nd: Magic 102, Denver Nuggets 89
This was the first game of the Jacque Vaughn and post-Dwight Howard era, and Magic fans were wondering how the team would look in their first regular-season game, after a 2-6 preseason. The Magic were brilliant, as they led by 21 points at halftime, and were never threatened in the second half. Power forward Glen "Big Baby" Davis led the way with 29 points and 10 rebounds, and guard J.J. Redick chipped in with 21 points off the bench, as the Magic shot 49 percent and held the Nuggets to 38 percent shooting.
November 4th: Magic 115, Phoenix Suns 94
What would the Magic do for an encore, after their impressive opening night victory over Denver? It didn't look good for the Magic, who played without point guard Jameer Nelson, as they trailed 65-50 with under 10 minutes remaining in the third. The Magic then went on an offensive explosion, outscoring the Suns 36-11 the rest of the quarter, and 65-29 the rest of the game, on their way to what would be their most lopsided victory of the season. J.J. Redick scored 24 points off the bench to lead the Magic, while Glen Davis and guard Arron Afflalo added 22 points.
December 2nd: Magic 113, Los Angeles Lakers 103
Most Magic fans would probably agree this was the Magic's best win of the season. In their first-ever meeting against former franchise center Dwight Howard, Orlando stunned the Lakers by outscoring them 40-26 in the final quarter, and were led by Arron Afflalo's 30 points, along with 23 points and 12 rebounds from Glen Davis. Howard scored 21 points and grabbed 15 rebounds, but was a dismal 9-of-21 from the free throw line. The Magic shot 50 percent from the field and 95 percent on free throws for the game.
December 31st: Miami Heat 112, Magic 110 (OT)
Playing without injured point guard Jameer Nelson and forward Glen Davis, Orlando gave the defending champion Heat all it could handle. Center Nik Vucevic grabbed a franchise-record 29 rebounds, along with 20 points, while Arron Afflalo added 28 points and J.J. Redick 23 points. It took 36 points and 11 assists from Heat superstar LeBron James to help the Heat overcome the Magic. Orlando could not hold a seven-point lead entering the fourth quarter, and a four-point lead in the final 1:07 of regulation.
January 12th: Magic 104, Los Angeles Clippers 101
Another tremendous win for the Magic in the Staples Center, as the Clippers had the NBA's best record at the time. The Magic win also broke the Clippers' franchise-record 13-game home winning streak. Arron Afflalo led the way with 30 points, and J.J. Redick was key again with 21 points, including a 3-pointer that gave the Magic the lead with 42 seconds remaining. Redick also drew a charge against the Clippers' Jamal Crawford with 33 seconds remaining. The win broke a 10-game losing streak for Orlando, and was their first win without Glen Davis, who hurt his shoulder the previous month.
March 6th: Miami Heat 97, Magic 96
This win was Miami's 16th in a row in the midst of their 27-game winning streak, and arguably was the most difficult win for the Heat during their streak. It appeared that Miami was on their way to an easy victory, as they led the Magic 60-40 early in the third quarter. Inexplicably, Orlando stunned Miami by going on a 46-21 run to lead 86-81 in the fourth quarter. The Magic led 96-93 with 1:36 remaining, but would not score again, as LeBron James' running left-handed layup in the final seconds won it for the Heat. For the game, Miami went to the free-throw line 31 times, compared to 12 times for Orlando, while the Magic were whistled for 30 fouls compared to 17 for the Heat. Nik Vucevic had another outstanding game, with 25 points and 21 rebounds for the Magic.
April 10th: Magic 113, Milwaukee Bucks 103 (OT)
The Magic welcomed back J.J. Redick to the Amway Center for the first time in an opposing uniform in what turned out to be a very exciting game. Orlando looked like it would be going down to defeat again, as they trailed by five points in the final minute of regulation. Thanks to some missed free throws by the Bucks, the Magic trailed by three points with under 10 seconds remaining. Tobias Harris' 3-pointer as he was fouled with 1.9 seconds remaining tied the game. Harris, though, missed the potential game-winning free throw. It didn't matter, as Orlando dominated the overtime period, outscoring Milwaukee 18-8. Nik Vucevic became the first Magic player ever with 30 points, 20 rebounds and 5 assists in a game, while Harris added 30 points and 19 rebounds. It was the first time in 46 years that two teammates scored at least 30 points along with at least 19 rebounds in the same game.
As a Magic fan, which one of these games was the most memorable to you? Feel free to leave your thoughts in the comments.