Orlando Magic Grades: Golden State Warriors 109, Orlando Magic 95

Jordan Poole and the Golden State Warriors shocked the Orlando Magic. (Photo by Noah Graham/NBAE via Getty Images)
Jordan Poole and the Golden State Warriors shocked the Orlando Magic. (Photo by Noah Graham/NBAE via Getty Images) /

The Orlando Magic had taken the lead back in the fourth quarter. But their bad habits led to a late-game collapse to the Golden State Warriors.

38. 109. 41. Final. 95

The Orlando Magic had betrayed themselves throughout the course of their first trip to the Chase Center.

They built a 13-0 lead with great ball movement and fantastic energy, only to let it drop within three minutes. The Golden State Warriors, owners of a 10-game losing streak, were playing determined and never let their energy drop. They came back and the game quickly became a battle.

Orlando fell down by as much as 13 points. The Magic suddenly could not get a shot to fall or get into the paint. The pain of frustration that has been present so many times began to creep in. And the Magic were getting torn apart and outhustled. The Magic looked worn out and tired and, worst of all, lethargic.

Still, the Warriors are the worst team in the Western Conference. They would make mistakes. And if the team locked into focus, they could make their run.

It happened as the team turned it over to Markelle Fultz more and more. He weaved his way through the lane, picking out teammates and finding seams to get to the basket or set up his mid-range jumper.

He got two Warriors to dive with him down the lane when he whipped the ball back to Nikola Vucevic for a one-handed jam. The Magic were back in the lead. It looked like this was a team they could indeed sleepwalk through and win.

Not the case. There is no team like that for this Magic team. The Warriors finished the game on a 19-4 run, capping it off with a D’Angelo Russell pull-up 3-pointer over Evan Fournier for a 109-95 win Saturday at the Chase Center.

Orlando was left without much explanation for why their energy was not good. Nor any explanation why the trio of Nikola Vucevic, Evan Fournier and Aaron Gordon combined to shoot 14 for 40 (35 percent). Or once again how the Magic struggled to get into the paint for free throws or get open 3-point shots.

Let alone why the Magic continually struggled to track 3-point shooters or stop dribble penetration. The team was simply not locked in. Against any team in the NBA playing with energy and attention, this was an effort that would get them beat.

And after a surprising split in Los Angeles, the team now has to scramble back East to salvage a .500 record on the road trip. And wonder what could have been with the opportunities they let slip.

C-. Whenever there is a loss like this, eyes immediately turn toward the team leaders. That is absolutely how it should be. At the end of the game, the Orlando Magic ran their offense through Nikola Vucevic and Evan Fournier. After taking that one-point lead, neither player was able to deliver.<p>For Vucevic especially, it was a frustrating night. While he did a decent job on the glass with 13 rebounds, his energy and precision was lacking throughout the evening. The Golden State Warriors went 5-out a lot and put Vucevic in bad positions for him on the perimeter. The Magic were scrambling defensively without their big to help them get set. Vucevic still has to get better settling in there.</p><p>Usually, Vucevic makes up for this with his offensive output. But even that was unreliable in this game. He struggled to get anything to go down. Vucevic made just one of his five 3-point attempts and 6 of 19 shots overall. Orlando again tried to force the ball to him in the low post and he did not deliver on his touch shots. The Warriors did a good job crowding and rushing him.</p>. C. Orlando Magic. NIKOLA VUCEVIC

Orlando Magic. EVAN FOURNIER. C-. Evan Fournier has been very reliable throughout the season. But dealing with his quad injury — and then adding illness on top of that — has slowed him down plenty. He is trying to contribute to his team especially with all the injuries. it is always admirable for him to play. But he still has to contribute and play well. He was not dragging as much as he did in Thursday’s loss to the <a href=. G/F

C. <a href=. F. Orlando Magic. AARON GORDON

A-. The only real bright spot for the Orlando Magic on both ends came from <a href=. PG. Orlando Magic. MARKELLE FULTZ

15th West. GOLDEN STATE WARRIORS. A+. The Golden State Warriors were on a 10-game losing streak. They put their hearts into the loss to the <a href=. 10-34

The Orlando Magic are 20-23 and seventh in the Eastern Conference, one game ahead of the Brooklyn Nets for seventh. The Orlando Magic’s magic number to clinch a playoff spot is 36 Magic wins or 36 Detroit Pistons losses.

Next. Orlando Magic 2nd Quarter MVP: Nikola Vucevic. dark

The Orlando Magic wrap up their road trip Monday in Charlotte against the Charlotte Hornets.