After a dramatic, high-scoring victory over the Golden State Warriors Monday, the Charlotte Bobcats (10-12) were outrebounded and outmuscled in a 92-83 loss to the Orlando Magic (7-15) Wednesday.
Walker’s backcourt mate Gerald Henderson wasn’t much better, scoring 12 points on 3 of 14 shooting. Charlotte shot 37 percent from the field and for the 10th time this season scored fewer than 90 points.
Al Jefferson finished with 10 points and 11 rebounds. Walker, Henderson, and Jefferson combined to shoot 11 of 42 from the field.
Nikola Vucevic returned to Orlando’s lineup from an ankle injury and secured his 10th double-double with 12 points and 14 rebounds. Vucevic, acquired from Philadelphia in last year’s four-team Dwight Howard trade, has 56 double doubles since joining the Magic.
Glen Davis also notched a double-double for the Magic with 17 points and 12 rebounds. Orlando won the battle on the glass against Charlotte 52-41.
Despite a strong effort on the glass from the frontcourt, Jameer Nelson was Orlando’s hero in the fourth quarter. Nelson, in his 10th season with the Magic, scored 12 of his 17 points in the last quarter, including a 3-pointer with 1:06 left to give Orlando a seven point lead.
IN THE BONUS:
- Logic just doesn’t compute how the Bobcats can win against the Warriors in a shootout and barely go over 80 points against the Magic a few days later. This was not a pretty game to watch on either side, but Orlando’s rebounding and second chance points gave them enough to get in position for the win. This would have been a good game for the Bobcats to win before they head to Indiana for a tough game against the Pacers.
- Orlando finished with 17 second chance points on 14 offensive rebounds.
- Jefferson is averaging 11.6 points on 33 percent shooting in his last three games.
- Cody Zeller finished with 10 points, six rebounds, and two assists in 15 minutes. Zeller scored six of his points in the first quarter.
- Tobias Harris, acquired from Milwaukee in last season’s J.J. Redick trade, is still out with a high ankle sprain.
- Orlando has done a good job picking up key pieces in trades. Along with Vucevic and Harris, Arron Afflalo was also acquired by trade last season. Afflalo has been a good veteran piece for the team and likely has solid value to playoff contenders, should Orlando decide to cash in.
- Jeff Taylor returned to the Bobcats starting lineup after missing Monday’s game with a left heel contusion. Bismack Biyombo remains out with an ankle injury.
ABOVE THE RIM:
- Greg Pietras, Queen City Hoops: This was just a flat, sad game to watch. There was bound to be a comedown after Monday’s win against the Warriors, but I didn’t think it would be this bad.
- Evan Dunlap, Orlando Pinstriped Post: Charlotte, for all its strengths as a defensive team, is maligned offensively. Were it not for Zeller’s surprisingly effective stint-he shot 4-of-4 for eight points in eight minutes-then Charlotte would have struggled even more than it did.
- Chris Barnewall, Rufus on Fire: This game was all kinds of weird, from Zeller chasedown blocks to Davis corner threes, and to top it all off, the Bobcats defense was bad. The one impressive consistency of the season failed the Bobcats tonight.
- Phillip Rossman-Reich, Orlando Magic Daily: Charlotte and Orlando both struggled to shoot the ball, but rebounding proved to buoy Orlando until the 3-pointers began falling in the second half.