By John Denton
January 27, 2013
``I keep believing that it’s going to turn in our favor,’’ Vaughn said. ``I’m genuine, up front with it and as fair as I can that you have to continue to work hard, you don’t skip steps and you control your thoughts. It’s easy right now to let misfortune to get into your mind. This is life lessons as well as basketball lessons.
``This is an opportunity to fight through something and stay together as a team,’’ Vaughn continued. ``It’s easy to give in. But our coaching staff will continue to fight, be resilient and we’ll continue to push these guys and hug them at the same time. That’s what we do.’’
Magic shooting guard J.J. Redick had a career-best eight 3-pointers and tied a personal high with 31 points. He made 10 of 17 shots and eight of 11 3-pointers to torch the Pistons for a second time in a week. But Redick got just two shots in the fourth quarter, and badly missed a 3-pointer with 10 seconds to play when he had to force a shot up at the end of the shot clock.
``It comes down to stops,’’ said Redick of a Magic defense that yielded 50.6 percent shooting to Detroit. ``You get stops in a close game in the last three minutes, you're gonna have a chance to win.’’
Davis scored 15 of his 17 points in the second half, and he added 12 rebounds. Nelson added 18 points, eight assists and six rebounds, while E’Twaun Moore tied his career high with 18 points off the bench. It was Moore’s three-point play with 2:50 to play that gave the Magic a brief 98-95 lead.
Vucevic notched his 23rd double-double of the season with 12 points and 17 rebounds.
``J.J. carried us in the first half and I decided to get off my (butt) and be more aggressive in the second half and it gave us a chance to win,’’ Davis said.
The Magic left after the game for New York where they will stay for three days. Orlando will play the Brooklyn Nets on Monday and the New York Knicks on Wednesday. After that, the nine-day, five-game trip will take the Magic to Boston (Friday), Milwaukee (Saturday) and Philadelphia (Monday). Orlando is 0-3 this season against Brooklyn, 0-2 versus New York and 0-1 against Boston. It will be the first meetings of the year against Milwaukee and Philadelphia.
Orlando cut a 10-point halftime deficit to one point by the start of the fourth quarter by playing exceptionally well on the offensive end of the floor. The Magic made 15 of 25 shots in the period, and could have stormed into the lead if they hadn’t traded baskets because of defensive breakdowns.
The Magic wasted another strong start by Redick and trailed 55-44 at the half because of some sloppy ball-handling and shoddy shooting. Orlando turned the ball over 11 times in the first two quarters, leading to 14 Detroit points. Some of that also led to 16 fastbreak points and 24 points in the paint for the Pistons. And the Magic compounded matters by shooting just 37 percent in the opening half.
As he had Tuesday in Detroit, Davis struggled mightily against Detroit’s bigger frontline. He missed six of his seven shots with three turnovers in the first half. Redick made seven of 10 shots, six of the makes coming on 3-pointers, in the first half, while the rest of the Magic hit just nine of 22 shots in the first 24 minutes. Redick had 21 points at intermission.
Just as he had done on Tuesday against the Pistons in suburban Detroit, Redick opened the game with a dazzling shooting display. He scored 16 of the Magic’s first 18 points by making his first five 3-point shots. The five 3-pointers in a quarter tied the team record set previously by Cutino Mobley set in 2004 in Utah.
Rotations dictated that Redick go out of the game late in the first period, and Detroit used the time with the shooting guard on the bench to go on a 12-2 run and grab a 29-25 lead after one period. But almost immediately upon checking back into the game, Redick drilled a sixth 3-pointer just 13 seconds into the second period.
The six 3-pointers equaled Redick’s career high, set earlier this season in Portland and two other times previously in his career. It was just two 3-pointers short of the franchise record for 3-pointers in a half, a mark held by Jason Richardson and Tracy McGrady.
``I assume that Jacque has a plan with the rotation, and I didn’t feel like I had cooled off or anything,’’ Redick said of being pulled out of the game late in the first quarter. ``If anything, I think I became less aggressive as the game wore on in terms of hunting my shot, and that’s one thing I would change.’’
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