Postgame recap: Pelicans 111, Magic 97

by Jim Eichenhofer
@Jim_Eichenhofer

BOXSCORE || PHOTOS || QUOTES || VIDEOS

Pelicans (16-16), Magic (11-22)

ORLANDO – When Anthony Davis, DeMarcus Cousins and Jrue Holiday are playing like this, New Orleans is tough to beat. The Pelicans’ top three scorers this season combined for 70 points Friday, keying a convincing road victory, New Orleans’ first win by double digits since Nov. 24 in Phoenix.

The Pelicans prevailed in the middle game of a three-game road trip, which concludes Saturday at Miami. New Orleans entered Friday in eighth place in the Western Conference. Davis, Cousins and Holiday combined to shoot an efficient 29/45 from the field.

IT WAS OVER WHEN…

Jameer Nelson drained a three-pointer against his former team – one he helped lead to the 2009 NBA Finals – giving New Orleans a 19-point lead with 10-plus minutes remaining. That marked the Pelicans' biggest lead of the night to that stage. Darius Miller knocked down another trey on the next New Orleans possession to extend he advantage to 20 for the first time.

PELICANS PLAYER OF THE GAME

Davis set the tone for a one-sided triumph by repeatedly getting to the rim in the first half, swooping in for alley oop dunks, with a few dished by Rajon Rondo (eight assists, all in the opening half). Davis was also active on the backboards, capping the opening-half scoring with an athletic, lefty putback over Orlando center Nikola Vucevic. Davis wasn’t needed in the fourth quarter, with the Pelicans continuing to expand a cushion on the scoreboard.

The four-time All-Star finished with 20 points and 11 rebounds in only 30 minutes of action, an ideal night with a game coming up at Miami in less than 24 hours.

QUOTES TO NOTE

“I think this was a must-have game, and we got it. It started with our defense.” – Davis on WRNO 99.5 FM postgame radio, discussing the Pelicans holding an opponent under 100 points for the first time since the Nov. 24 win at Phoenix

“I thought we did a good job with the turnovers number one, which didn’t compromise our defense very much at all. And then I thought we did a good job of moving the basketball and finding open people and I liked the pace that we played at and I thought our shot selection was really good.” – Alvin Gentry on some of the keys to a road win, including only committing 15 turnovers, instead of 20-plus in some recent games

“I feel like he always has the athletic advantage, no matter who he’s playing against. His athleticism, length, skill – he’s a mismatch every night. Whenever we need him he can get an easy bucket.” – Nelson on Davis scoring so frequently and easily on alley oops Friday

BY THE NUMBERS

4/20: Orlando three-point shooting, after New Orleans has not been good defending the arc in recent weeks. Magic big Mo Speights shot 6/10 at New Orleans in the Oct. 30 matchup, but was just 2/6 this time.

50.0: New Orleans shooting percentage from the field. The Pelicans were 33 of 56 from two-point range, having a second straight so-so night on treys (10/30).

48-40: Rebounding advantage for the Pelicans. Davis and Cousins both grabbed 11, while reserve Dante Cunningham secured seven in his 26 minutes.

Pelicans vs. Magic Postgame: Head Coach Alvin Gentry 12-22-17

Head Coach Alvin Gentry speaks to the media following the Pelicans' win over the Magic.

Game 32: Pelicans at Magic 12/22/17

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Pelicans vs. Magic Postgame: Head Coach Alvin Gentry 12-22-17

Head Coach Alvin Gentry speaks to the media following the Pelicans' win over the Magic.
Dec 22, 2017  |  03:52

GAME RECAP: Pelicans 111, Magic 97

DeMarcus Cousins leads all scoring with 26 points to lead Pelicans to a win over the Magic, 111-97.
Dec 22, 2017  |  02:07

Assist of the Night: Rajon Rondo

Rajon Rondo brings it up on the break and threads the needle wth the behind-the-back pass to Jrue Holiday for the easy layup.
Dec 22, 2017  |  00:27

DeMarcus Cousins leads Pelicans with 26

DeMarcus Cousins finishes the night with 26 points and 11 rebounds against the Orlando Magic.
Dec 22, 2017  |  01:23

Anthony Davis puts up 20 points and 11 rebounds

Anthony Davis has 20 points and 11 rebounds against the Orlando Magic in the Amway Center.
Dec 22, 2017  |  01:44

Holiday has 24

Jrue Holiday has 24 points against the Orlando Magic.
Dec 22, 2017  |  03:21

Boogie with authority

DeMarcus Cousins takes it from the baseline and goes up with ease
Dec 22, 2017  |  00:10

Holiday 360 Layup

Jrue Holiday drives to the rim and hits the crazy 360 layup.
Dec 22, 2017  |  00:19

Cousins breaks ankles, Jrue knocks it down

DeMarcus Cousins breaks down his defender and passes it to Jrue Holiday who knocks down the three
Dec 22, 2017  |  00:10

Anthony Davis has five dunks in first half

Anthony Davis has a field day on the rim by having five dunks in the first half
Dec 22, 2017  |  01:18

Rondo lobs to AD

Rajon Rondo sees AD off a screen and lobs it to him for the jam
Dec 22, 2017  |  00:10

Boogie takes over in the paint

DeMarcus Cousins takes over in the paint with a dunk
Dec 22, 2017  |  00:08

Big to big for the slam

DeMarcus Cousins lobs it to Anthony Davis and he takes flight for the slam.
Dec 22, 2017  |  00:09

Cousins to Holiday for three

DeMarcus Cousins gets the ball inside and zips it to Holiday for three
Dec 22, 2017  |  00:08