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Game 1 Was Truly An Instant Classic

Josh Cohen
Digital News Manager

TORONTO - At some point in the future when we look back at the Magic’s all-time most memorable playoff moments, D.J. Augustin’s game-winning 3-pointer with 3.4 seconds left on Saturday in Game 1 at Scotiabank Arena will certainly rank somewhere on the list.

Augustin was sensational, in general, going for 25 points on 9-of-13 shooting from the field and 4-of-5 from beyond the arc. The 31-year-old had also tied the game on Orlando's possession before the game winner when he drove down the lane and made a tough layup.

Meanwhile, his Toronto counterpart, Kyle Lowry, went scoreless, missing all seven of his shot attempts, six from downtown.

Although the 11-year NBA veteran was certainly the game’s top performer and delivered the night’s signature moment, others on the Magic made big plays on both ends of the floor as well.

Aaron Gordon, who’s been terrific defensively all season, did a great job contesting Kawhi Leonard’s potential game-tying 3-point attempt right before the final buzzer.

A few minutes earlier with the score knotted at 92, Gordon and Nikola Vucevic defended a Leonard and Marc Gasol pick-and-pop to perfection, which led to a Leonard turnover and Evan Fournier breakaway dunk.

While none of them were quite as memorable as the one Augustin nailed in the final seconds, the 3-pointers made down the stretch by Gordon, Vucevic and Jonathan Isaac were all significant.

Vucevic’s supreme court vision led to Gordon’s triple with about five minutes left. The Magic’s All-Star center, who knocked down his big three a couple possessions later, had a mismatch in the post with Danny Green guarding him, forcing Pascal Siakam to slide over in case Vucevic went to work. That left Gordon open in the right corner.

Almost the same exact thing happened when Isaac hit his huge triple with 1:58 left. Lowry got switched onto Vucevic on the low block and Vooch whipped the pass out to Gordon, who swung it to Isaac in the corner.

Augustin's game winner is certainly one of the most cold-blooded shots in franchise postseason history, along with the go-ahead 3-pointer Hedo Turkoglu sank in Game 4 in Philadelphia in 2009 and the one Rashard Lewis hit in Cleveland that same year.

Also, where does this game rank among the all-time most entertaining games in Magic playoff history? Certainly several of the games from both the 1995 and 2009 Finals runs make the list. But, there’s no doubt that this win, with how they kept responding even when it looked like the Raptors were going to pull away, goes down as one of the most exhilarating.