Kicking off their longest road trip of the season, a six game, 10-day trip, the Orlando Magic stopped in Indiana to take on the injury ridden Pacers. Even without the services of Roy Hibbert, George Hill and Paul George, the Pacers were able to take care of business relatively easily, beating the Magic 98-83.
The opening 12 minutes were rough for the visitors. Orlando gave up nine offensive rebounds, leading to six Pacer points. Neither team shot the ball well in the quarter -- Orlando shot a balmy 8-of-21, while the Pacers shot a colder 10-of-29 -- but the Pacers had success in the paint, scoring 16 of their 26 their in the quarter. Rodney Stuckey led all scorers with nine for the Pacers, while a trio of Magic men, led by Nikola Vucevic, had four each in the opening quarter.
After a sluggish first quarter, the Magic found a little bit of a groove offensively. Ben Gordon, who led the team with 10 first half points, knocked down all three of his shot attempts, and two free throws, while Channing Frye knocked down two more three-pointers to get the Magic going. The Magic, who were stagnant on offense at multiple points in the half, did a good job moving the ball, notching assists on six of their eight field goals in the quarter. Indiana continued to rebound the ball well, but the Magic were able to grab a few more misses, out rebounding the Pacers 13-9 in the quarter. David West, who made his season debut, led the way for the Pacers with 11 at the break.
Out of halftime, the third quarter collapse returned. Orlando played sloppy, unintelligent, uninspired basketball for almost the entire quarter. The Magic turned the ball over seven times, leading to 10 points for the Pacers. While their 6-of-13 shooting number may come off as efficient, their unwillingness move the ball, and sloppy play led to the few number of attempts. West continued to lead the way for the Pacers, scoring 16 through three, while Vucevic led the way for the Magic with 12.
With the Pacers up 13, things were looking bleak for the Magic. An attempted run early in the quarter cut the lead down to 10, but the Pacers strong play on the defensive end, coupled with just enough offense proved to be too much for the Magic. The loss was the team's fourth in a row, and could be the start of a very long, and rough road trip.
Indiana's dominance was led by Rodney Stuckey, who finished with a game high 24 points. West, who missed the team's first 15 games with an ankle sprain, finished with 18 points, six rebounds and four assists. Solomon Hill struggled from the field, but finished with 11, while Lavoy Allen notched a 10 points, 14 rebound double-double off the bench. Indiana dominated the game on the boards, out rebounding the Magic 52-32, and in the pain, out scoring them 48-28.
Vucevic led the Magic once again, finishing with 16 points and seven rebounds. Tobias Harris and Victor Oladipo were hot on his tail, finishing with 14 a piece. Gordon, who had a good night shooting the ball, finished with 12 off the bench.