The Orlando Magic dropped their third game in a row after a 131-116 defeat by the Washington Wizards. Despite the loss, Orlando saw a glimpse of a talented young cohort with potential for greatness.
Young Talent Shines
Rookie Cole Anthony was back on the court again after missing 15 games due to a rib fracture. He started the game by making three-straight shots for the Magic.
Anthony later stopped a 7-0 run by the Wizards by making a shot from the three-point line. He finished the first quarter with seven points and two assists.
His tempo slowed down after the first frame, ending the game with 13 points on 5-for-14 shooting. Anthony also ended the game with seven assists.
The rookie acknowledged his inability to finish the game, to which he said:
“I gotta get in better shape, didn’t play that well,” Anthony said after the game. “Gotta be better.”
Another young athlete having an efficient night was Wendell Carter Jr. He finished the night with 15 points on 6-for-9 shooting. Carter Jr. also remained in the starting lineup despite the return of center Khem Birch.
Center Mo Bamba also had a night as he scored a career-high 19 points, including 3-4 from the three-point line. He also got eight rebounds with two blocks.
Bamba was part of a 15-2 run late in the third quarter to set Orlando within 10 points before heading to the last frame of the game.
The Texas native then helped cut the lead even more by scoring Orlando’s ten first points of the fourth quarter. This run by the young athlete helped Orlando to only trail by five points.
MO BAMBA ONE MAN WRECKING-CREW pic.twitter.com/0kMXQfEuBK
— RK (@beyondtheRK) April 8, 2021
Also finishing in the double digits were Michael Carter-Williams and R.J. Hampton who scored 13 and 14 points respectively.
Recap vs Washington
The game started off close as the Washington Wizards only had a one-point lead at the end of the first quarter.
But an 11-0 run by the Wizards to start off the second quarter made it difficult for Orlando to keep up. Washington was able to make seven of their nine attempts from behind the arch in this frame.
The lead kept growing as it reached a 21-point difference in the third quarter. This was stopped by the Anthony and Mamba 15-2 run that helped the Magic get within 10.
After getting within five early in the fourth, Orlando was not able to get any closer, as the Wizards’ lead went on to grow once more.
By the time the clock hit 3:26 in the last quarter, Washington was up by 17 points.
Washington’s win was fueled by Russell Westbrook‘s triple double. He scored 23 points while getting 15 assists and 14 rebounds.
Also leading the team was guard Bradley Beal who finished the night with 26 points, five assist and one rebound.
Davis Bertans joined Beal and Westbrook in the 20+ club after finishing the game with 22 points. He also chipped in a rebound and one assist.
The Orlando Magic will try to get back on the winning column as they host the Indiana Pacers on Friday, April 8. Tipoff for this game is set for 7 p.m.
Washington will continue their road-trip and their next destination will be San Francisco as they face the Golden State Warriors. Tipoff is set for 10 p.m. on April 8.