Denton: Magic vs. Celtics Analysis (11/8/13)


``We started the game really well and built up a nice lead, but they made a run and we didn’t respond the right way,’’ said Magic center Nikola Vucevic, who had just two points after the first quarter. ``They did a good job of taking away my post-ups. In the first quarter I was able to get some post-ups and pick-and-rolls, but they took those away. But I don’t think it was the offense that was an issue. It was the defense and us giving them too many easy buckets. And we had a lot of turnovers that they turned into easy points on the fastbreak.’’

Afflalo, who scored a game-high 23 points, had a four-point and a three-point plays in the final two minutes to keep Orlando close. Afflalo’s driving basket and free throw cut the Celtics lead to one point with 26 seconds to play.

But Boston’s Brandon Bass drilled two free throws with 10.5 seconds left to boost the lead back to three points. Afflalo hit another jumper from the left wing, but his feet were on the 3-point stripe, negating the tie.

``That wasn’t a smart play,’’ Afflalo said accidentally crossing the 3-point line. ``Obviously my intent was to shoot the initial three coming off, but with four seconds on the clock I have to be able to slow the game down enough to be conscious of where I am on the court. So I’m very upset with myself for stepping on the line.



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