The Indiana Pacers allowed the Magic to get off three-pointers without much of a defense. Bad ide..."/> The Indiana Pacers allowed the Magic to get off three-pointers without much of a defense. Bad ide..."/>

Three-Point Barrage Leads Orlando To Victory Over Indiana


The Indiana Pacers allowed the Magic to get off three-pointers without much of a defense. Bad idea. The Magic made 16 of their 34 three-point attempts en route to a 111-96 victory. The Magic did let their guard down and the Pacers went on a 20-6 run, cutting the lead to as little as seven in the fourth quarter before the Magic responded with an 8-0 run to virtually put the game away.

Danny Granger had a poor shooting night for the Pacers but found a way to score27 points while Dwight Howard led the way with 19 points and 16 rebounds.

After the jump, you can more thoughts and observations from the game.

  • Dwight Howard was a monster early and often. He scored six of Orlando’s first eight points. On Orlando’s first possession, Howard back Roy Hibbert down for an easy dunk. The next time Howard got the ball; he made a beautiful spin move, hit a layup and drew the foul. Hibbert, who’s played fairly well on the offensive end against Howard, scored just four points and grabbed just two rebounds.
  • Ryan Anderson was feeling it.  He entered the game after Brandon Bass and picked up his second foul and proceeded to hit four of his first five three-point attempts, sparking the Magic to go on a 28-9 run, turning a 21-19 deficit into a 47-30 lead. During the run, Gilbert Arenas knocked down a pair of three-pointers, including one with just one second left in the first quarter, giving Orlando a 24-21 lead they’d never relinquish.
  • Anderson finished with 14 points.
  • Hedo Turkoglu, who’s had a couple of lackluster performances, played much better Wednesday night. Turkoglu scored 18 points on 7-of-10 shooting, grabbed six rebounds and dished out four assists.
  • After getting off to a slow start and all-around bad shooting night (5-of-14 from the field) Jason Richardson wound up with a nice line of 19 points and nine rebounds. He used four three-pointers and five free throws to push his point total to 19.
  • 10 Magic players played in the game and six scored in double figures. Keep in mind that Chris Duhon came in for just one minutes and Quentin Richardson played just three. Gilbert Arenas and Brandon Bass, the only two rotation players who didn’t score in double figures, scored eight points apiece, giving the Magic their most balanced effort in a while.
  • Brandon Bass had a spectacular dunk off of a lob from Jason Richardson in the first half, skying higher than most probably thought he could. Bass played just 18 minutes to do early foul trouble and the productivity of other players but still finished with eight points and six boards.
  • Darren Collison, who averaged 21.5 points per game against the Magic as a member of the New Orleans Hornets last season, torched the Magic point guards again, putting up 21 points on 10-of-18 shooting.
  • The Magic were still plagued by their two biggest problems – poor defense and turnovers. Orlando committed 13 turnovers and fell apart on the defensive end on a few different occasions, allowing the Pacers to cut Orlando’s 23-point third quarter lead to seven early in the fourth quarter.
  • The Magic are rather lucky they played a team who settles for a lot of low quality shots.
  • Still Orlando should be given their due for some of the things they did on the defensive end – they were better on that end of the court. They were pretty solid defending the Pacers in the halfcourt and did a great job on Danny Granger. Collison and Indiana’s transition game is what killed the Magic.
  • Congratulations to Stan Van Gundy for winning his 200th game.

Next Up: The Magic will travel to Chicago to take on a very good Bulls team Friday night.

Final Thought: Defense and turnovers are major issues but the offense sure isn’t.

(Andrew Melnick is Howard the Dunk’s lead blogger and ESPN 1080’s Magic Insider ( Subscribe to his RSS feed, add him on Facebook and follow him on Twitter to follow him daily. You can download the HTD app here).