Finishing up their three game home stand, the Orlando Magic suited up for yet another important game against the Boston Celtics. The Magic pieced it all together once again, putting it to the Celtics, pulling away in the second half for a 91-110 victory. The win puts the Magic over .500 for the first time since November 6th, 2013 when they were 3-2.
Early on, the Magic's offense struggled, with no movement, coupled with an excessive amount of turnovers. As the quarter wore on, things didn't get much better, with all five players seemingly glued to one side of the floor, not allowing for any penetration to get shooters open. Despite their poor spacing, the Magic were able to do enough on that end, while turning the Celtics over and converting off of their mistakes to the tune of 11 points off of six turnovers. After one, the Magic found themselves with a slight 21-20 lead.
The second quarter was a different story for the Magic, who picked apart one of the top defensive teams in the league. Behind strong play from Andrew Nicholson and Victor Oladipo off the bench, the Magic were able to take a hold of the lead for the remainder of the half, pushing it to as many as nine. Nicholson and Oladipo combined for 17 points in the quarter, including three of the Magic's four three-pointers. Through 24 minutes, the Magic had a decent grip on the game, leading 53-45 at the half.
Out of halftime, the Magic put the peddle to the metal, much like they did Friday night against the Milwaukee Bucks. The Magic took advantage of seven offensive rebounds, turning them into 16 second chance points, aiding them in pushing their lead up to as many as 17 in the quarter. The Magic used crisp ball movement to pick apart the usually stingy Celtics defense, scoring 31 points in the quarter, while knocking down five three-pointers. For the second consecutive contest, the Magic were in a position to put the game away early in the fourth, up 84-67 after three.
Holding a big lead early in the fourth, the Magic were able to push their lead up to as many as 21, before the Celtics began slowly whittling it down. Stagnant offensive play began plaguing the Magic again, with the Celtics cutting the lead down to 12 around the midway point of the quarter. Despite the fourth quarter charge, the Magic were able to hang on for their third straight victory.
Nikola Vucevic led the way for the Magic, finishing with 18 points and 10 rebounds for his sixth double-double of the season. Oladipo finished the night with 19 off the bench, while Nicholson added 14 points and eight rebounds. Tobias Harris notched another double-double himself, finishing with 15 points and 11 rebounds.
Four Celtics finished in double figures, led by Isaiah Thomas' 20. Fellow backcourt mate Avery Bradley added 17, with Jae Crowder finishing with 12. Kelly Olynyk finished then night with 11 off the bench.