Magic get their marquee victory
Orlando used a second-half surge to fight off Philadelphia, 98-97.
This might have been the marquee victory the Orlando Magic have been seeking.
Despite two consecutive late 3-pointers from Philadelphia’s Joel Embiid, the Magic — in need of a jump-start to kick themselves into gear after a lethargic first 30 games — used a second-half surge to fight off the fourth-place Philadelphia 76ers and post a huge 98-97 victory at Amway Center on Friday night.
Embiid’s desperation 3-pointer at the buzzer put a brief scare into the Magic fans, but their team did just enough to send them home happy.
The Magic frustrated Embiid for most of the night. The Philadelphia all-star center scored 24 points after being held scoreless in the second quarter and nearly the entire decisive fourth quarter, with the exception of his two late 3-pointers.
The Magic didn’t help themselves late, missing four free throws, including two by former 76ers point guard Markelle Fultz with 22 seconds left, but they still managed to hold onto the win.
Orlando got a solid effort from several players. Evan Fournier finished with 20 points while Aaron Gordon had 19, Terrence Ross had 17, Nikola Vucevic had 16 and Fultz added 13. Vucevic and Gordon posted double-doubles with 12 and 11 re
76ers center Joel Embiid (21) shoots under pressure from Magic forward Aaron Gordon (00) and center Nikola Vucevic (9) Friday at Amway Center. The Magic held on for a win.