Coming off a tough three game road trip, the Orlando Magic returned home to take on LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers. Despite a decent start, the Magic got handled by the surging Cavaliers, falling 123-108.
Starting the game, the Magic got off to a good start, grabbing a 10-4 lead early in the quarter. As the quarter wore on, their offense continued to click at a relatively smooth pace, with the team getting good looks on many possessions. The hosts also had a lot of success on the boards, out rebounding Cleveland 22-9, including 11-to-1 on the offensive glass. While they got a lot of looks -- they attempted 30 shots in the quarter, the Magic struggled from the field overall, making just 12 of their attempts. Tobias Harris once again got off to a quick start, scoring 10 points and grabbing four rebounds in the opening 12 minutes. The aforementioned James led the way for the Cavs, finishing with 11 early.
Holding a small lead heading into the second quarter, things went downhill fast for the Magic. Cleveland opened the quarter on a quick 11-0 run, forcing the Magic to call a timeout. Following the timeout, the Magic began to make their run, sparked by veteran reserve point guard Luke Ridnour. Ridnour knocked down four jumpers, including a pair of three's, helping the Magic cut the Cavalier lead back down to three. However, an 11-to-4 run by the Cavs allowed them to push their lead to 11 heading into halftime. James continued to lead the visiting Cavs with 15, while Harris was joined by Nikola Vucevic with 14 to lead the Magic.
Out of halftime, the Cavaliers continued to impose their will on the struggling Magic. Behind continued hot shooting from beyond the arc, Cleveland was able to push their lead to as many as 16 in the quarter. Kyrie Irving took the game over for the visitors, scoring 16 of his game-high 30 in the quarter. Fellow Cavalier guard J.R. Smith knocked down a set of three balls, pushing his total to 22 of the game. The Cavaliers picked apart the Magic's defense even more, scoring 34 in the quarter, while holding their field goal percentage at 61.3 percent. Despite struggles shooting, Victor Oladipo scored 13 in the quarter, pushing his total to a team-high 23 for the game after three.
Down 14, things were looking bleak for the hosts heading into the final 12 minutes of action. Early in the quarter, Cleveland pushed their lead up to as many as 17. The Magic made a run, however, cutting the lead down to nine, before James took over and all but sealed the deal for the Cavaliers with his scoring and playmaking.
Four Cavaliers finished in double figures, led by Irving's game-high 33 on 12-of-15 shooting. Smith knocked down six three-pointers en route to 25. James flirted with a triple-double before settling for 21 points, 13 assists and eight rebounds. Sharpshooter James Jones rounded out their group in double figures, finishing with 12 on the night.
Orlando brought forth a much more balanced scoring effort, led by Oladipo's 25 points and seven assists. Vucevic notched his 38th double-double of the season, finishing with 22 points and 14 rebounds. Harris scored 24 and grabbed eight rebounds, with Ridnour adding 15 off the bench. Elfrid Patyon rounded out the group, finishing just shy of a triple-double with 13 points, 10 assists and nine rebounds.