After opening their eight game preseason slate with an overtime win over the Miami Heat on Tuesday night, the Orlando Magic traveled to Indiana to take on the Pacers on Friday night. Much like Tuesday night, the Magic were able to fight and claw their way to a victory, taking down the Pacers 96-93.
Like Tuesday night, coach Jacque Vaughn chose to go with the starting lineup of Luke Ridnour/Evan Fournier/Aaron Gordon/Tobias Harris/Nikola Vucevic. OrlandoMagic.com scribe John Denton said that Vaughn wanted more data on the lineup, which is why he chose not to shake it up.
After a shaky opening quarter, the Magic went on a 21-5 run early in the second quarter to grab the lead. While the Pacers pushed back, the Magic, behind strong play from rookie point guard Elfrid Payton, were able to hold onto the lead, going into halftime up 47-46.
Out of the halftime break, Orlando started quickly, going on a 12-2 run in the first five minutes of the quarter. However, like the second quarter, the Pacers fought back, tying the game up late in the quarter. A Payton jump shot with 23 seconds remaining in the quarter gave the Magic a two point lead going into the fourth quarter.
Much like the previous two quarters, the Magic came out of the gates firing on all cylinders, pushing the lead back to seven early in the quarter. The Pacers fought back, tying it up at 85 before Devyn Marble knocked down a three-pointer to give the Magic a lead they wouldn't relinquish.
Orlando finished with four players in double figures, paced by Tobias Harris' 16 points. Reserve big man Kyle O'Quinn notched a double-double, finishing with 13 points and 10 rebounds, while starting center Nikola Vucevic finished with 12. Evan Fournier wrapped up the Magic men in double figures, scoring 11 on the night. After struggling with turnovers on Tuesday night, Elfrid Payton coughed it up just one time en route to an eight point, five rebound and dive assist night.
Donald Sloan lead a group of six Pacers in scoring, finishing with 16 off the bench. Roy Hibbert, who did not play in the second half, notched 13 early points, while point guard George Hill and small forward CJ Miles finished with 11 each. Rodney Stuckey and Lavoy Allen rounded out the group of Pacer in double figures, scoring 10 each.