Orlando Magic Grades: Orlando Magic 114, Indiana Pacers 94

Mar 31, 2016; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Indiana Pacers forward Paul George (13) controls the ball as Orlando Magic guard Evan Fournier (10) defends during the second half at Bankers Life Fieldhouse. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports
Mar 31, 2016; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Indiana Pacers forward Paul George (13) controls the ball as Orlando Magic guard Evan Fournier (10) defends during the second half at Bankers Life Fieldhouse. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports /

The Orlando Magic are now really clicking offensively, and several players looked sharp in the 114-94 win over the Indiana Pacers on Thursday night.

94. 100. 114. 38. Final

The Orlando Magic are playing as a team again. The Magic spread the court and moved the ball, looking sharp in getting nearly whatever shot they wanted in their 114-94 win over the Indiana Pacers.

The Magic penetrated and dished inside, scoring 56 points in the paint. Orlando went at the chest of the Indiana Pacers’ shot blockers Ian Mahinmi and Myles Turner. The result was Orlando shot better than 50 percent from the field again, while coming up with 26 assists on 48 field goals.

The Magic spread the scoring load around and put five players in double figures, led by Evan Fournier and Nikola Vucevic who combined for 49 points.

It is hard to ignore the fireworks of putting up big scoring numbers like the Magic have.

A. <p>Evan Fournier had another hot-shooting night and did a little damage from all over the court. He connected on 10 of 14 from the field <em>en route</em> to a team-high 25 points. Fournier came out aggressive and had a big first quarter, knocking down 4 of 6 from the field in the period.</p><p>Fournier’s defense against Paul George was pretty solid for the most part even if George did work his way to 27 points on 11-for-23 shooting. George is a pretty transcendent talent and Fournier kept him in check on a night in which he was very active.</p><p>Fournier kept pace with an All-Star and put in 36 minutes of hard play. That deserves a top mark.</p>. G/F. Orlando Magic. EVAN FOURNIER

Orlando Magic. NIKOLA VUCEVIC. A. <p>Oh, how nice it was for the Orlando Magic to have back their leading scorer, Nikola Vucevic.</p><p>Vucevic missed the last 13 games with a groin injury, but made his way back to the court in a big way. Vucevic knocked down 12 of 15 from the field for 24 points and six rebounds in just 25 minutes of play. It was pretty apparent he had missed playing basketball, and he was aggressive right from the first quarter onwards in looking to knock off any rust.</p><p>It was hard to notice any semblance of rust really, and even defensively Vucevic seemed to be pretty locked in. The Magic managed to get by for a long stretch of season with Jason Smith and Dewayne Dedmon, but neither offers the type of offensive brilliance we saw from Vucevic tonight.</p>. C

Orlando Magic. ELFRID PAYTON. B+. <p>Elfrid Payton put together a solid game just by sticking to what he does best. He missed all three of his shots outside the paint, but came up with a few tear drops and finishes at the rim to go 5 for 10 from the floor on the night.</p><p>Payton finished with 10 points, seven rebounds and five assists while posting a +12 plus/minus. Payton has averaged 14 points and 8.8 assists in the Magic’s last five games, a span in which he has also shot 51.7 percent from the floor. He has done a good job running the team offensively and got into the paint to set himself and others up at will.</p><p>It is obviously not that Payton has cured his shooting woes, but he is now mostly taking good shots for his skill set, namely floaters and looks in the paint. He has also been good about hitting the offensive glass, and he came up with a couple second-chance buckets in what was a strong effort on both ends of the court.</p><p>The Magic limited the Indiana starting backcourt to 8-for-20 shooting, and Payton played a big role in George Hill’s struggles.</p>. PG

D. <p>The Indiana Pacers color commentators were not pleased with this one on FSIndiana.</p><p>The Pacers were sloppy with the ball, and did a poor job of trying to run with a much younger Orlando Magic team. Indiana had taken care of business against Orlando this season in winning all three of the previous meetings, but in this game Orlando was much better about stopping the Indiana guards.</p><p>Monta Ellis was not able to get it going, and that had been a point of emphasis this season in slowing Indiana. Paul George had a relatively big game, but Evan Fournier kept him in check and the Pacers could not get much going beyond George’s 27-point night.</p><p>The Pacers hold just a one game lead over the Chicago Bulls, in hopes of retaining the No. 8 spot or even passing the No. 7 seeded Detroit Pistons who lead Indiana by a game.</p>. 39-36. 8th East. INDIANA PACERS