Big Fourth Quarter Propels Magic Past Spurs for Eighth Win in Last Nine Games

Josh Cohen
Digital News Manager

The Lead

Cole Anthony flirted with a triple-double with 23 points, 10 rebounds and nine assists, Franz Wagner scored 21 points and Paolo Banchero finished with 18, as the Orlando Magic poured it on in the fourth quarter to defeat the San Antonio Spurs 133-113 on Friday night at Amway Center for their eighth win in their last nine games and fifth straight at home.

Key Stretch

The Magic used a 19-3 fourth-quarter run to pull away. Mo Bamba made three straight triples during that stretch, while Anthony knocked down a couple of his buckets and each of the Wagner brothers were cooking in that time as well. Orlando ended up accumulating 39 fourth-quarter points and hit eight 3-pointers in the period, tied for the most threes in a single quarter in franchise history.

Key Stats

The Magic shot 57.5 percent from the field, their second-best mark of the season, and 53.1 percent from beyond the arc. It was the first time this year they shot over 50 percent from downtown.  They also dished out a season-best 30 assists. 

Back in Action

Wendell Carter Jr. made his return after missing 18 of his last 19 games with a right plantar fascia strain and had eight points off the bench in 18 minutes. Also back was Gary Harris, who had previously played in just six games this season due to two different injuries. The 6-foot-4 veteran finished with nine points in 20 minutes.

Injury Report

Jalen Suggs (right ankle soreness), Chuma Okeke (left knee surgery), and Jonathan Isaac (left knee injury recovery) were out for the Magic. Everyone was available for the Spurs.

Quote of the Day

“It’s amazing what the organization has done, what the DeVos family has done, what they continue to do is just so important to who we are, who this organization is, and what we are about. Taking care of those obviously in times of need, but during the holiday season, it’s so special to be able to be a blessing to so many.” – Magic Head Coach Jamahl Mosley on the team helping others in the community this holiday season

This Day in History

The Magic opened their 2020-21 season on Dec. 23 when everything got pushed back because of the pandemic, and Orlando came away with a victory at Amway Center that night against the Miami Heat. Evan Fournier led the Magic with 25 points, Aaron Gordon scored 20, Terrence Ross had 19 and Markelle Fultz finished with 15 points. Bam Adebayo led the Heat, who were coming off their Finals run in the Disney bubble, with 25 points, while Goran Dragic scored 20. 

Rivals Report

It still sounds weird to call the Spurs a rebuilding team after all their years of competing for championships, but that’s the direction they chose to go in. There’s some optimism swirling around in San Antonio about some of the young talent they’ve acquired in the draft the last few years, including Keldon Johnson, Devin Vassell and Jeremy Sochan. It’s unlikely that any of them blossom into superstars, but that’s a good blend of talent to get them started. 

Up Next

After a couple days off to celebrate Christmas, the Magic will be back at the Amway Center to take on the Los Angeles Lakers on Tuesday at 7 p.m. This will be the second of a five-game road trip for the Lakers. They are in Dallas on Christmas Day. Although LeBron James continue to put up eye-popping numbers, especially for someone about to turn 38 years old, the Lakers have struggled getting into a consistent rhythm. A foot injury is going to keep Anthony Davis out a while. L.A. is 13-18 overall and 5-11 away from home.