The Orlando Magic’s season is slipping away, having now lost 11 of 13 games. Their latest loss was at the hands of the Charlotte Hornets.
Mistakes Cost Magic
The Magic were the better shooting team, shooting 44-percent from the field compared to 41-percent for the Hornets. However, the Hornets were the better team in virtually every other aspect. Charlotte dominated Orlando on the glass 59-46, scored more fast break points (19-10), points in the paint (50-44) and dominated defensively with 13 steals compared to just five for Orlando. In addition, the Hornets were the more disciplined team, committing just 18 personal fouls compared to 30 for the Magic and turning the ball over 15 times compared to 20 for the Magic.
All five of the Magic’s starters scored in double figures. Evan Fournier led the way with 18 points on 54-percent shooting. DJ Augustin led the Magic bench with 13 points on a perfect 100 percent shooting. Four of Charlotte’s five starters scored in double figures. The only starter who didn’t score in double figures was Marvin Williams, who had seven points on 50 percent shooting. Kemba Walker led both teams with 29 points on 44 percent shooting. On the Hornets bench, Frank Kaminsky and Jeremy Lamb combined for 26 points on 42-percent shooting.
Free Throws Prove to Be the Biggest Difference
The Hornets were the more aggressive team all game and as a result, got to the line more than the Magic did. Charlotte had 40 free throw attempts compared to just 14 for Orlando. Walker himself had the exact same number of free throw attempts as the entire Magic team did. He had an average shooting night from the field, but came up big from the line, making all 14 of his free throw attempts. With the win, the Hornets snapped a four-game losing streak.
The Magic will take on the Atlanta Hawks Wednesday at 7 p.m. in Orlando while the Hornets will take on the defending champions Golden State Wednesday at 8 in Charlotte.