Life on the road continues to be rough for the Orlando Magic as they fall again, this time 107 to 102 to Dallas. The Magic are now 21-49 on the year and are at 12 straight road losses. They are also now 6-12 under James Borrego as they continue to sink during this 6 game losing streak.
The Magic played this game shorthanded as both Tobias Harris and DeWayne Dedmon were both out with ankle injuries. Despite that, the Magic, who were down by double digits for most of the game, battled back to make it close down the stretch. But without the big men in the paint and an off night from Victor Oladipo, they fell to one of the western powers that is preparing for the playoffs.
Oladipo had 19 points on 7 of 20 shooting but was 0 of 6 from 3-point range (added 6 assists and 4 rebounds). Nikola Vucevic had 12 points and 9 rebounds. Eflrid Payton had his first career triple with 15 points, 10 rebounds, and 12 assists (so nice to see his offensive game developing). Channing Frye had 11 points and 2 assists. Maurice Harkless, who started the game, had 18 points, 6 rebounds, and 4 assists. Aaron Gordon had 6 points and 6 rebounds while Kyle O’Quinn had 7 points and 2 rebounds off of the bench.
Another game, another tough bitter defeat. The Magic were down two big men, faced double digit deficits for most of the game, and nearly came back to win it late (Payton had a chance late to tie it up). These are all the pains of a young team that is learning on the job. They show heart and there is no quite with them under Borrego, but they always seem to come up just short. They will now return home to face another western power, Portland, on Friday at 7 PM. Maybe being back home will help them regroup and bounce back. A win over a team that ranks 4th in the western conference standings would be huge.