Hill, Magic Top Knicks
Orlando 105, New York 95
ORLANDO, Fla., Dec. 28 (Ticker) -- Grant Hill and the Orlando Magic made it look easy until the final minutes.
Hill contributed on both ends of the floor as the Magic held on for a 105-95 victory over the struggling New York Knicks, who lost for the ninth time in their last 10 games.
The Knicks used a 12-4 run, capped by Jamal Crawford's 3-pointer with 2:11 remaining, to pull within 100-94. But they got no closer in their latest loss.
With Orlando leading 65-57 in the third quarter, Hill stripped Crawford and finished with a layup and added a jumper 57 seconds later to cap a 13-4 run.
"I can't say too much about Grant. He does everything," Magic guard DeShawn Stevenson said. "I think he was awesome. He's our leader. We have to feed off him."
Orlando took its biggest lead at 89-73 with 9:32 remaining when Dwight Howard dunked over Eddy Curry and sank a free throw to complete a three-point play.
"Our first team didn't shoot the ball too well," said Knicks Coach Larry Brown, whose starters were 6-of-34 from the field. "The Magic had 14 steals to zero for us. To me, by accident you can get a steal."
Steve Francis added 17 points and six assists for the Magic, who placed six players in double figures. Stevenson finished with 14 points, Tony Battie had 13 and 10 rebounds and Howard and Hedo Turkoglu had 11 points apiece.
"Offensively, we've put together two good games," said Hill, who had 20 points in Orlando's 108-93 win over Milwaukee on Monday. "The ball was just kind of falling in my lap so I can't say it was good defense. I was in the right place at the right time."
Curry had a season-high 29 points on 10-of-17 shooting with nine rebounds. Crawford scored 24 points off the bench with four 3-pointers as the Knicks' reserves accounted for all but 20 of New York's points.
"Eddy's (Curry) definitely a force out there," Knicks rookie forward Channing Frye said. "He's getting to be like he was in Chicago. Every night our bench just tries to come out and play with some energy."
It was a struggle for Knicks leading scorer Stephon Marbury, who missed all seven of his shots and managed just five points in 40 minutes.
"I went into the game mentally the same way I normally do," Marbury said. "Tonight, the flow of the game didn't permit me to score a lot of points."
Brown saw Marbury's performance differently.
"I think he just didn't want to shoot the ball," Brown said. "I thought he'd have 15 or 20 assists. He got the ball all the time. I ran as much stuff for him as I have all season. Maybe he didn't feel like he had it."
New York shot 36 percent (31-of-87) and committed 18 turnovers to remain winless in six road games against Eastern Conference opponents.