Orlando Magic Grades: Boston Celtics 122, Orlando Magic 119

The Orlando Magic went all out for a win against the Boston Celtics, only to see their lead dissolve late. (Photo by Kim Klement-Pool/Getty Images)
The Orlando Magic went all out for a win against the Boston Celtics, only to see their lead dissolve late. (Photo by Kim Klement-Pool/Getty Images) /

The Orlando Magic held the lead late, but made critical errors down the stretch and allowed the Boston Celtics to go through the door for an overtime win.

38. 122. 18. Final/OT. 119

Orlando Magic coach Steve Clifford said after Friday’s loss to the Philadelphia 76ers that Joel Embiid’s star power cost them the game through the fourth quarter. Against star players, you cannot let them get comfortable to get to their spots. And you cannot give them second chances when you do get stops.

Orlando led by five with about 40 seconds left in regulation when things began to unravel.

The Magic forced a Marcus Smart miss only to see Daniel Theis outhustle the team to the rebound. He dished it out to Jayson Tatum who sidestepped Gary Clark to drain a three.

Orlando needed some strong execution to get a good shot or take the clock down. They really got neither. D.J. Augustin attacked quickly driving into the paint, trying to draw a foul only to have Daniel Theis block his shot at the rim.

Tatum again got the matchup he wanted with the smaller Markelle Fultz defending him. Fultz was game, but Tatum knocked him off balance and spun back toward the baseline to hit the tying basket.

Orlando, having lost a five-point lead, was not quite deflated. The team, playing without Aaron Gordon (hamstring), Michael Carter-Williams (foot) and Evan Fournier (illness), had to band together and find scoring wherever they could. This group scrapped and scratched and clawed.

The Celtics just had more in a 122-119 win overtime win Sunday. They had Tatum and his star power scoring 12 points in the fourth quarter and overtime, hitting big shots to keep the Magic at bay.

Orlando lost much of its pace and rhythm too. The Celtics employed a soft press to slow the Magic down, forcing them into their offense later and later in the shot clock. That decreased their shot quality and their ability to move the ball to get open looks.

The Celtics locked down the paint, blocking several of D.J. Augustin and Terrence Ross’ attempts to attack the rim. And they were able to still give themselves a small chance to win.

Orlando got the stop only for Fultz to take a few steps before calling timeout. The Magic had to inbound from the backcourt. The Celtics were happy to let Fultz receive the past and have a free lane up to the 3-point line. He hesitated and shoveled the pass to Nikola Vucevic who missed the fadeaway three, ceiling the loss.

The defeat was disappointing for the lost opportunity and mistakes late in the fourth quarter and through overtime. But also disappointing for the effort that went behind it.

Orlando was dialed in defensively for much of the game and got performances throughout the bench that it normally would not expect. Everyone stepped up throughout the game.

Just not at the end.

B. With all those key players out, the Orlando Magic had to rely on <a href=. C. Orlando Magic. NIKOLA VUCEVIC

D. A lot of the ire in this game is heading toward D.J. Augustin. No one will fault Augustin for his aggressiveness. He was willing to attack the basket and get into the trees. But his finishing left a lot to be desired. And he made some really bad decisions as he tried to attack the rim. His attack and miss in regulation cost the team a win, quite simply.<p>More than that though, the Magic’s lack of pace with Augustin running the show was on full display. The Boston Celtics went to a soft press in overtime and it forced the Orlando Magic into their offense far too late into the shot clock. Plays devolved into Augustin running a quick pick and roll. Those results rarely got good shots.</p><p>Augustin struggled throughout much of the game too. He scored 12 points on 3-for-12 shooting and had five assists against four turnovers. It was hard to figure out why he was still in the game late in games with Markelle Fultz (16 points, 10 assists) playing so well. This was a tactical error from Steve Clifford without a doubt.</p>. PG. Orlando Magic. D.J. AUGUSTIN

A. <a href=. F. Orlando Magic. GARY CLARK

JAMES ENNIS. B+. Talking about players who do things that do not show up in a box score, <a href=. G/F. Orlando Magic

47-23. 3rd East. BOSTON CELTICS. B. Orlando Magic coach Steve Clifford warned about star power after the team’s loss to the Philadelphia 76ers. Indeed, with 40 seconds left, Boston Celtics fans were lamenting a lost opportunity and a lackluster and mistake-filled effort. Then Jayson Tatum took over and everything was all right.<p>This was not the Celtics’ best offensive game. The Magic were able to execute their stuff well and they were game to compete throughout this one. Boston never really had control of the game and were fighting themselves a lot too. The Celtics had 12 turnovers for 17 Magic points and made only 12 of 40 3-pointers.</p><p>But Boston stuck with it. Gordon Hayward had a strong 31 points, seemingly incapable of missing shots as he weaved through Orlando’s defense. Tatum scored 29 points. And Jaylen Brown had a quiet 19. Boston was always within contact, just hoping for Orlando to leave the door open.</p>

dark. Next. Orlando Magic turn attention toward Playoffs

The Orlando Magic are now 32-39. They can be eliminated from winning the 7-seed with a Brooklyn Nets win later Sunday night. The Magic will next face those Nets on Tuesday.