The Los Angeles Lakers were looking to get the first victory of their Grammy road trip as they traveled to Orlando to take on the Magic. This was a very important game for those interested in the Lakers tanking as the Magic were right behind the Lakers coming into the game.
The Lakers had one of their better showings in the first meeting between the two teams as they blew out the Magic by 17 at Staples Center. The Magic were looking for revenge but came into the game having lost 10 straight and just firing their coach.
On the other hand the Lakers came in having lost 11 of their last 12 games and desperately trying to turn things around. The Lakers came into the game with a 13-36 record while the Magic were 15-37.
A Ryan Kelly steal got things started for the Lakers, which Jordan Clarkson finished at the rim to open the scoring. Meanwhile a tough Nikola Vucevic hook shot got the Magic started. The rookie Clarkson had a good start, coming up with a steal and finishing with a floater in the paint. The high energy Lakers seemed to lull the Orlando offense at the start. But Tobias Harris sank a three to close the gap to four. Clarkson continued his solid start with a steal and assist for Tarik Black who had finished with a big time jam. Tobias Harris had three straight baskets to trim the Laker lead down to one, and Vucevic slammed in a missed three point attempt to give the Magic the lead. Ed Davis missed the last Laker possession and Vucevic got fouled with 0.4 seconds on the clock. He sank one of two free throws to cap off a good offensive quarter. The Lakers finished the quarter down 23-26.
Carlos Boozer scored the Lakers first basket of the second quarter off an offensive board. Wesley Johnson collected another Lakers steal and the play finished with a Jeremy Lin three pointer in transition. The Laker bench looked to reinvigorate the sluggish offense. The high energy continued as Johnson collected an offensive board and fed Carlos Boozer for a basket. The Magic were forced to call a timeout after Ed Davis came up with a block and followed it up with an offensive board which Jeremy Lin finished with a layup. The Laker bench outplayed their Magic counterparts and retook the lead, going up by six points. Boozer converted yet another basket from an offensive rebound, as the lakers continued their dominance on the boards. Jeremy Lin rejected an Elfrid Payton drive, and followed up with a long lob pass to Ed Davis that gave the Lakers a 10 point lead and forced yet another Magic timeout. Tobias Harris responded yet again for Orlando, but Jeremy Lin converted a tough jumper on the other end. Wayne Ellington re-entered the game and made a three, though Payton converted a layup off a steal which was the Lakers’ ninth turnover of the game. Jordan Clarkson once again lead another fast break and lobbed it to a running Wesley Johnson who slammed it home. A 7-0 run gave the Lakers a commanding 14 point lead. The purple and gold went up 52-38, and capped off a great second quarter effort.
The Lakers were sluggish offensively to start the third quarter. Wayne Ellington and Channing Frye got into a small scrap, which resulted in a double technical. Ellington converted the free throw, but Jordan Clarkson was caught traveling, wasting the free possession and giving the Lakers yet another turnover. Clarkson and Tobias Harris then traded baskets. A Ryan Kelly three point make was answered by a Channing Frye long ball. The back and forth offensive possessions ignited the Lakers, as Wayne Ellington had himself another three pointer and Ryan Kelly converted a three point opportunity. Nikola Vucevic hit a jumper, followed by a Ryan Kelly three ball. Kelly was up to twelve points. But the Orlando big man kept his team in the game with a three point play. A Tobias Harris steal resulted in an Oladipo dunk finish, but Ryan Kelly hit yet another three point shot. Vucevic hit another shot and trimmed the deficit to only six points. But Ryan Kelly continued his hot streak from downtown, keeping the Magic at bay. Two consecutive Carlos Boozer baskets put the Lakers up by double digits again. An Oladipo dunk cut the Lakers lead to nine at the end of the third.
Harris hit a shot to start the quarter for the Magic, but Lin matched him on the other end to keep the Lakers ahead by nine. The Magic would go on a 7-0 run behind an Evan Fournier three and back-to-back Aaron Gordon dunks to cut the Lakers lead to four. The run continued after the timeout as Gordon had another three-point play and a Willie Green three gave the Magic a two-point lead. Another Green layup put Orlando ahead by four before Davis finally ended the run with a hook shot. A free throw from Ellington and a Sacre jumper put the Lakers back ahead midway through the quarter. Both offenses struggled as neither team could get a bucket until Harris finally muscled past Kelly for a basket to put Orlando ahead with less than four minutes left. The Lakers would respond as Johnson grabbed an offensive rebound for the putback. Vucevic would split a pair of free throws to tie the game with three minutes left. Vucevic blocked Kelly, but the Magic were unable to capitalize and Kelly knocked down two free throws on the other end to put the Lakers ahead by two. Vucevic matched with a hook to tie the game with two minutes left. Both teams missed a couple of opportunities, but the Lakers had multiple chances with under 30 seconds remaining. Clarkson and Ellington each missed threes and this game headed to overtime tied at 91.
Tobias Harris hit an easy shot to continue his career night to start the extra session as the Lakers offense continued to struggle. The Lakers finally got going with a Wesley Johnson three, but Elfrid Payton matched with a layup on the other end to keep Orlando ahead by a point. Both teams missed some crucial opportunities before Harris hit another jumper to give the Magic a three-point lead. Oladipo would strip Johnson clean for an easy dunk to put Orlando ahead by five and likely put the game away. Sacre hit a short jumper to keep the Lakers within reach and Oladipo missed a layup giving the Lakers a chance but they couldn’t convert. The Lakers had another chance, but Clarkson blew a layup and the Lakers were forced to foul. Ridnour hit two free throws to ice the game for the Magic as the Lakers would lose their second straight overtime game, 103-97.
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