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Aaron Gordon sparks Magic past Timberwolves, 112-103, in overtime

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Gordon had his best game of the early season, helping lead the Magic to an overtime victory.

Aaron Gordon
Aaron Gordon
Kim Klement - USA Today Sports

After notching their first win of the season in Philadelphia on Wednesday, the Orlando Magic returned home for a game against the Minnesota Timberwolves before embarking on a three game road trip. After a hard fought back-and-forth battle, the Magic walked away victorious in overtime, 112-103.

Minnesota started quickly, grabbing a 10-4 lead before you could blink, but the Magic answered. Over the next five minutes of the quarter, Orlando went on a 15-4 run to grab a 19-14 lead, before trading buckets with the visiting Timberwolves the rest of the way. Evan Fournier continued his strong play, leading all scorers with 11 points in the quarter. Orlando once again struggled with turnovers, coughing the ball up seven times, leading to nine Minnesota points.

After a highly competitive opening quarter, the Magic and Timberwolves continued to trade baskets for much of the second quarter. Minnesota lost point guard Ricky Rubio part way through the quarter to a badly sprained ankle. Gorgui Dieng, playing much of the half for Nikola Pekovic who picked up two early fouls, led Minnesota with 11 points and seven rebounds, while Fournier continued to lead the Magic with all at the halftime break. Orlando was unable to fix their turnover issues, giving it away another six times in the quarter.

Out of halftime, the Magic had arguably their best third quarter of the season. Despite not playing any defense, they kept the game close, cutting into Minnesota's lead in the quarter. After taking just one shot in the first half, Channing Frye knocked down all three of his attempts, while Elfrid Payton took advantage of Rubio not being in there, attacking at will for nine points in the quarter. Kevin Martin kept his good night going, scoring seven of the Timberwolves 25 in the quarter.

After three quarters of very little defense being played, both teams ramped it up some in the fourth quarter. Aaron Gordon's strong play on both ends, coupled with more good play from Maurice Harkless, sparked the Magic in the quarter. After grabbing a brief four point lead, midway through the quarter, Minnesota answered, taking the lead back at 87-85. The two then proceeded to do what they did most of the game: go back and fourth. After a handful of missed shots by both teams, the Magic tied the game up thanks to two Nikola Vucevic free throws. Kevin Martin's last second shot attempt falls short, and the two head to overtime.

Playing late minutes for the first time in his young career, Aaron Gordon made an important play early in the overtime period. Matched up with Thad Young, Gordon forced a turnover, leading to a breakaway dunk, which turned into an And-1 courtesy of a foul by Martin. Behind Gordon and Fournier, the Magic were able to pull away in the overtime period to win their second straight.

Orlando had a balanced scoring effort all night, with six players finishing in double figures. Fournier led the Magic with 20, while both Tobias Harris and Aaron Gordon contributed 17, with Harris adding 16 rebounds. Payton was aggressive all night, finishing with 15 points. Vucevic came one rebound shy of a double-double, finishing with 14 points and nine rebounds. Harkless rounded out the Magic men in double figures, finishing with 11.

After losing Rubio to an ankle sprain, Minnesota's offense became stagnant, running mostly through Martin, who led all scorers with 21. Nikola Pekovic and Corey Brewer were in Martin's footsteps, finishing with 16 each. Young finished with 13, while DIeng finished with 11 points and 10 rebounds off the bench.