Wrapping up a brief two game road trip, the Orlando Magic traveled to chilly Milwaukee to take on the Bucks. Pockets of sloppy play, and an inability to close late cost the Magic, falling to the Bucks 113-110.
Early on, both teams were sloppy, turning it over eight times combined in the first half of the quarter. While the Bucks tightened up as the quarter wore on, the Magic did not, continuing to struggle with the ball, finishing the quarter with seven turnovers, leading to eight Bucks points. The Magic's inability to keep Milwaukee out of the paint killed them throughout the quarter, with the Bucks scoring 20 of their 31 in the paint in the quarter. After one, thanks to their stifling defense and strong play offensively, the Bucks lead the Magic 31-22.
Down as many as 14, the Magic finally began to find some life with their bench in. Behind 15 points from Nikola Vucevic, and some good, heady play from Brandon Jennings, the Magic found their way back into the game. After struggling to take care of the ball early, the Magic coughed it up just one time in the second quarter, helping aid them to a highly efficient 35 point second quarter. Despite trailing by 13 early in the quarter, the Magic found themselves trailing by just one, 58-57 at the half.
Out of halftime, the Magic once again struggled with Milwaukee's length, turning the ball over a few times early, leading to easy buckets for the hosts. Milwaukee was able to push the lead to as many as 10 before the Magic began to settle down and have the same success they did in the second quarter. After trading baskets for much of the second half of the quarter, a set of buckets from Andrew Nicholson and Jason Smith helped the Magic take the lead late in the quarter. After three, the Magic found themselves with a slight one point lead, 85-84.
With the lead, and their play trending upwards, the Magic appeared poised to take home their fourth straight win. After trading buckets early, the three ball began falling for the Magic, allowing them to grab their biggest lead of the game at six. Mario Hezonja gave the team a big boost with a set of three-pointers, pushing his total to 11 for the night. Sloppy play late in the quarter from the Magic allowed the Bucks to go on a 6-0 run to take a one point lead with just over a minute to play.
After Aaron Gordon grabbed a key offensive rebound, Nikola Vucevic found Elfrid Payton for a layup to give the Magic the lead back by one. Tyler Ennis proceeded to split a pair of free throws for the Bucks to tie the game with 38 seconds remaining. Following a foul by Greg Monroe, Vucevic split a pair of his own at the line to put the Magic back up one with 27 second left.
Jabari Parker put the Bucks up one with 10 seconds remaining following a post up bucket on Vucevic, leaving the Magic the final shot for a chance to win. Evan Fournier committed an offensive foul on the ensuing possession, with Ennis ultimately being fouled. The second-year guard made the pair, putting the Magic down three with 3.8 seconds remaining. Fournier missed a three at the buzzer, ending the Magic's winning streak.
Parker led all scorers, finishing with 26 on the night. Giannis Antetokounmpo notched a triple-double, finishing the night with 18 points, 11 assists and 11 rebounds. Monroe and Khris Middleton each added 18 of their own. Ennis and Miles Plumlee scored 13 and 12 respectively off the bench.
Vucevic led the Magic off the bench with 22. Victor Oladipo flirted with a five-by-five, finishing with 18 points, five assists, five steals, four blocks and three rebounds. Evan Fournier and Gordon each scored 14, with Andrew Nicholson scoring 13 off the bench.