Magic Fall to Rockets’ 49 Threes

By on January 7, 2017

 

Orlando, Fla. — The Orlando Magic dropped their third straight home game on Friday night, falling to the Houston Rockets 100-93. The Magic were able to hold Rockets’ MVP candidate James Harden to just 14 points, but his supporting cast, led by an Orlando opponent record 49 three-point attempts, were still able to outpace the Magic.

After leading by as many as 10 points in the second quarter, the game began to slip out of Orlando’s hands in the third. It was former Magic man Ryan Anderson that closed the gap, sinking all six of his field goals – five of them threes, for 17 points in the third quarter alone.

“We let Ryan Anderson loose too much in the third quarter,” said Magic coach Frank Vogel, “and I thought that’s where the game was lost.”

As a whole, the Rockets shot only 30 percent from beyond the arc, but the sheer volume of three point attempts buried the Magic.

James Harden shot 30 percent from the floor, including 0-of-8 from deep. Eric Gordon, the league’s leading scorer off the bench, was 3-of-16 from downtown. Even Ryan Anderson managed only two more points, and missed all four of his three-pointers after his hot third quarter.

The Magic’s plan for locking down Harden, the league’s fourth leading scorer, was a bit unorthodox. Aaron Gordon, the Magic’s starting small forward, was used as Harden’s primary defender. Orlando took advantage of their length by switching on pick and rolls, and cross matching their players to combat Houston’s plethora of shooters.

Despite the solid job defensively, it was the sluggish Magic offense that would knock them out of the game down the stretch. The Magic combined to shoot 40 percent from the floor in the second half, while allowing a blazing 53 percent from the Rockets. Two of the most reliable weapons for Orlando, center Nikola Vucevic and shooting guard Evan Fournier, combined for 8-of-28 from the field.

The one lone bright spot for the Magic was Aaron Gordon, who was just as effective on offense as he was on defense. Gordon shot 50 percent from the floor on his way to a team-high 18 points, as well as six rebounds and a career-high seven assists.

“I think I’m just a little bit more dynamic,” said Gordon on his passing, “at the beginning of the season I wasn’t able to be all that dynamic, and now I can make moves that I wasn’t able to make.”

The Magic (16-22) look to get over this loss during their upcoming road trip, which will send them across the west coast for the next 11 days. Next on the schedule comes a date with the Los Angeles Lakers at the Staples Center on Sunday.

1 2 3 4 T
HOU 19 25 35 21 100
ORL 22 30 23 18 93
Rockets
STARTERS MIN FG 3PT FT OREB DREB REB AST STL BLK TO PF +/- PTS
R. AndersonPF 33 7-12 5-9 0-0 0 3 3 0 2 0 0 0 -1 19
M. HarrellPF 22 3-6 0-0 3-6 1 3 4 1 1 1 2 2 -7 9
T. ArizaSF 29 5-10 3-8 0-0 2 4 6 2 0 0 0 2 -3 13
P. BeverleyPG 31 7-9 3-4 0-0 4 5 9 3 3 0 3 1 +6 17
J. HardenSG 34 5-15 0-8 4-6 1 6 7 10 1 0 6 4 -6 14
BENCH MIN FG 3PT FT OREB DREB REB AST STL BLK TO PF +/- PTS
S. DekkerSF 18 3-5 1-2 0-0 4 4 8 1 1 0 1 1 +11 7
C. BrewerSF 16 0-4 0-2 0-0 0 2 2 3 0 0 1 1 +7 0
N. HilarioC 25 2-5 0-0 0-0 0 3 3 2 3 0 2 1 +16 4
E. GordonSG 32 7-20 3-16 0-0 0 3 3 4 1 0 0 3 +12 17
C. OnuakuPF DNP-COACH’S DECISION
K. WiltjerF DNP-COACH’S DECISION
C. CapelaC DNP-COACH’S DECISION
T. EnnisPG DNP-COACH’S DECISION
B. BrownPG DNP-COACH’S DECISION
K.J. McDanielsSG DNP-COACH’S DECISION
TEAM 39-86 15-49 7-12 12 33 45 26 12 1 15 15 100
45.3% 30.6% 58.3%
Magic
STARTERS MIN FG 3PT FT OREB DREB REB AST STL BLK TO PF +/- PTS
S. IbakaPF 33 8-17 0-1 0-2 5 7 12 1 0 0 1 3 +6 16
A. GordonPF 36 7-14 2-6 2-3 3 3 6 7 1 0 2 2 +6 18
B. BiyomboC 20 1-3 0-0 0-0 2 3 5 2 2 0 1 2 -11 2
E. PaytonPG 25 6-10 0-1 0-0 1 1 2 2 2 0 1 0 -13 12
E. FournierSG 35 4-13 0-2 2-3 3 6 9 2 1 0 2 2 +7 10
BENCH MIN FG 3PT FT OREB DREB REB AST STL BLK TO PF +/- PTS
J. GreenSF 20 3-8 1-3 0-0 0 1 1 1 1 0 2 0 -12 7
N. VucevicC 28 4-15 1-1 0-0 5 7 12 1 0 1 3 3 -10 9
D.J. AugustinPG 29 5-9 4-7 5-5 0 1 1 2 1 0 2 2 +3 19
J. MeeksSG 14 0-2 0-2 0-0 0 1 1 0 0 1 1 0 -11 0
A. OnuakuPF DNP-COACH’S DECISION
D. RudezSF DNP-COACH’S DECISION
S. ZimmermanC DNP-COACH’S DECISION
C.J. WatsonPG DNP-COACH’S DECISION
M. HezonjaSG DNP-COACH’S DECISION
C. WilcoxSG DNP-COACH’S DECISION
TEAM 38-91 8-23 9-13 19 30 49 18 8 2 15 14 93
41.8% 34.8% 69.2%
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