Magic Earn Great "Team" Win Over Celtics
ORLANDO - Everyone who stepped on the floor for the Magic during Saturday’s come-from-behind win over the Celtics made a big impact.
Aaron Gordon, who made each and every one of his career-high 13 free throw attempts, was ultra-aggressive attacking the basket.
No matter how many defenders the Celtics threw at him, Terrence Ross refused to be denied. He scored 25 points – amazing when you consider just how tightly guarded he was all night.
Evan Fournier, D.J. Augustin and Nikola Vucevic, even though he had an off night by his standards, all hit big shots down the stretch. Orlando went up nine when Augustin buried a 3-pointer with 2:31 left. After Boston closed the gap, Vucevic converted on a tough hook shot over Al Horford with 39 ticks remaining to put the Magic up five.
Wes Iwundu defended the single most important shot attempt of the game – a missed fadeaway jumper by Jayson Tatum at the final buzzer that would have sent the game into overtime. WATCH:
Terry Rozier went scoreless off the bench for the C’s, largely because of standout defense from Isaiah Briscoe, who also dished out four assists while not committing a single turnover.
If the game ball were to be handed out on this night, maybe Khem Birch would be the recipient. He was Mr. Energy, blocking four shots and altering a few others. The Magic outscored the Celtics by 23 when he was on the floor.
Boston made only eight threes, five fewer than its season average, and shot only 25 percent from beyond the arc, nearly 12 percent worse than its season average.
One particular sequence that sums up Orlando’s effort on both ends of the floor occurred early in the fourth when Birch rejected Gordon Hayward’s shot, leading to a Ross 3-point assist to Gordon. WATCH:
Of all the Magic's wins this season, an argument could be made that Saturday's triumph over Boston may have been the best "team" win because of how cohesive they were in those final 12 minutes after trailing by as much as 12 earlier in the game.