The Magic returned to Orlando from the West Coast in desperate need of a win. Instead they suffered one of the most lopsided and humiliating home losses in franchise history.
The Magic, coming off a 1-3 West Coast trip, struggled mightily on the offensive end and had no answer for Rodney Hood and the Jazz defensively as they were embarrased by Utah, 125-85. The 40-point loss matches the largest margin of defeat the Magic have suffered on their home court on franchise history, tying a 121-81 loss to the Detroit Pistons in 1991.
The Jazz at one point held a 46-point lead.
The very Jazz that entered the game having lost seven of eight games. The very Jazz that were playing in the second game of a back-to-back. The very Jazz that were playing without their best player, Rudy Gobert.
Oh, and the very Jazz that had been the only team in the NBA that has not won a game on the road.
With the loss, the Magic have now lost four straight and fallen to 8-8 on the season. The excitement generated by their early-season success has officially subsided.
Utah jumped out to an early lead by shooting 50 percent from the field in the first quarter. Derrick Favors got off to a quick start, scoring nine points, as the Jazz built a six-point lead and entered the second leading 29-26. Aaron Gordon kept the Magic close in the quarter, showing aggression that he had been lacking on the West Coast trip.
Aaron Gordon's last four games:— O. Pinstriped Post (@OPPMagicBlog) November 19, 2017
vs. Denver = 13 points, 5 of 11 FG
vs. GS = 10 points, 4 of 13 FG
vs. Portland = 12 points, 4 of 10 FG
vs. Utah in first quarter = 10 points, 4 of 8 FG
Stay aggressive, @Double0AG
The Jazz went on a 15-3 run in the second quarter to open a 44-29 lead. Hood later hit a three, a sign of things to come, that increased the lead to 47-31.
Terrence Ross then scored nine straight for the Magic to cut the deficit to single digits.
Joe Ingles answered with a corner three and followed with a bounce pass to a cutting Favors, who dunked it in for a 54-40 lead. Favors buzzer beater on a jumper in the paint sent the Jazz into the break with a 63-48 lead. Favors was perfect from the field in the first half, connecting on all seven attempts for 17 points.
The Jazz shot 57.1 percent from the field in the first half, including six of 12 from three. The Magic shot 42.9 percent, and just 3 of 12 from downtown. Orlando was led by Ross, who had 12 points on 5 of 6 shooting.
The Jazz lead would only grow, and grow by a lot, in the third as they built a 30-point lead.
Hood scored 15 of his 31 points in the quarter including three three-pointers in a row for the Jazz that opened a 97-67 lead.
After an 11-0 run in the fourth, the Jazz opened a 118-72 lead.
Hood, who scored 31 points in 26 minutes off the bench, connected of 7 of 13 three-point attempts. Favors finished with 25 points on 10-for-12 shooting and grabbed 11 rebounds. The Jazz shot 48 percent from the field and 14-for-34 from three (41.2 percent).
Gordon finished with 18 points to lead the Magic, who were stagnant on the offensive end, the result of overdribbling and taking far too long to get into their sets. The Magic had only 13 assists and committed 16 turnovers. They shot 38.8 percent and connected on just 8 of 29 three-point attempts (27.6 percent).
The Magic’s offensive efficiency and three-point shooting proficiency that powered them to a 6-2 start to the season, continue to plumet.
The Magic next host Victor Oladipo and the Pacers on Monday. A loss there, and the Magic will take a five-game losing streak with them on yet another four-game road trip, with stops in Minnesota, Boston, Philadelphia and Indiana.