The Magic showed on Sunday what happens when they knock down their shots.
They not only dominated for a majority of the game against one of the league’s better teams, but won in a place where they have rarely done so in the team’s 30 year existence.
After being ice cold with their shot early on this season, the Magic were hot from the very beginning against the Spurs en route to a 117-110 win, as Orlando won in San Antonio for just the sixth time in franchise history.
The Magic entered with the lowest field goal percentage in the league at 41.1 percent and the worst offensive rating at 99.0 points per 100 possessions. Against the Spurs, they reached that scoring output with 10:35 remaining in the fourth when Mo Bamba’s putback dunk opened a 99-76 lead.
It began in the first quarter when the Magic shot 67 percent from the field (14 of 21). It was a drastic improvement from the opening quarter in their previous game when Steve Clifford said he knew the Magic were in trouble 90 seconds in. Clifford must have been pretty pleased with the Magic this time around.
Thanks in part to eight points off the bench from Terrence Ross, the Magic took a 36-26 lead after one, matching a season-high for points in a single quarter. Orlando attempted just two-three pointers in the quarter, and made 7-of-8 free throw attempts to build a lead that would only grow even larger.
Evan Fournier had a strong offensive performance for the second consecutive game. He followed his 19 point performance against the Clippers (7-for-12 shooting) by scoring 14 first half points as Orlando shot 57.1 percent from the field, moved the ball well, and took a 63-54 lead into the break. D.J. Augustin added 10 points and six assists in the half, including this beauty of a set-up....
After the Spurs pulled within five early in the third, the Magic responded with a 9-0 run to increase the lead to 72-58. Aaron Gordon scored 11 points in the third and a pair of threes by Ross helped the Magic open a as the Magic blew the game open a 20-point advantage and finished the quarter with a 91-74 lead.
Mo Bamba scored eight points in the opening three minutes of the final frame, capped by a dunk on the fast break that opened a 105-79 lead.
And then the Spurs began a furious comeback.
A 17-2 run by San Antonio cut the lead to 107-96 with 5:28 to go. A pair of threes by Bryn Forbes brought the Spurs within 111-105 with 2:29 remaining. After Gordon answered with a drive, Pau Gasol drained a three, cutting the Magic lead to 113-108 with 1:41 to go. Nikola Vucevic answered with a bucket on the other end that all but brought the Spurs’ comeback to an end and sealed a highly impressive victory for the Magic.
The Magic shot 50.5 percent from the field, including 12-for-32 from three (37.5 percent), and had six players in double figures. Gordon, coming off a four point game against the Clippers where he only attempted five shots, led the way with 26 points on 11 of 20 shooting. Fournier, quiet in the second half, finished with 16 points and seven assists. Augustin had 18 points and seven assists and Nikola Vucevic added 13 points and eight rebounds. Ross finished with 17 points off the bench, connecting on three of his six three-point attempts.
Bamba recorded the first double-double of his career, tallying 12 points and 11 rebounds in just 16 minutes. He shot 6-for-11 from the field and also helped create some offense with his defense...
The Magic snapped a four-game losing streak and will now host Cleveland on Monday for the conclusion of their back-to-back. Much needed win for the Magic. And this face says it all....
When the Magic open a 26-point lead against the Spurs and win in San Antonio for just the sixth time in 30 years... https://t.co/uFVrIc0AAG— Orlando Pinstriped Post (@OPPMagicBlog) November 5, 2018