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  • MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. (FNN NEWS) -- The 12th annual Jazz In The Gardens kicks off Saturday, March 18, 2017 at Hard Rock Stadium. Rickey Smiley, Esperanza Spalding, Miami Gardens Mayor Oliver Gilbert and others announced this year's lineup at a press conference Friday. Photo: Mellissa Thomas/Florida National News

Porzingis Leads The Knicks to a Victory in Orlando

ORLANDO, Fla. (FNN SPORTS) – The Orlando Magic couldn’t relive Saturday night’s effort against the Atlanta Hawks in Wednesday night’s match against the New York Knicks at Amway Center. Kristaps Porzingis scored 20 points and grabbed 9 rebounds as the Knicks defeated the Magic by the score of 101-90. Even though the Knicks shot 42 percent from the floor and 27 from beyond the arc, the Magic couldn’t take advantage of the poor shooting effort.

Carmelo Anthony started off the game hot, but cooled off as the game went on. Anthony hit two early 3-pointers and had 11 points in the opening quarter as the Knicks led by 7. He finished 4 for 16 shooting and had 17 points and 9 rebounds. Even with their All-Star not at his best, it was a man nicknamed “The Unicorn” that carried the offensive load.

Porzingis scored 14 of his 20 points in the opening half and took advantage of his size and shooting ability to help his teammates get easy baskets at the rim. Derrick Rose used that to get to the lane for most of the game, he scored 19 points and had 7 rebounds. Justin Holiday scored 14 points off the bench in the Knicks’s win.

“Derrick was doing a great job in the pick and roll and attacking and getting to the basket. I thought today was just an overall great team effort.” – Knicks Forward Carmelo Anthony on Derrick Rose’s performance

Without rookie center Willy Hernangomez available, Knicks head coach Jeff Hornacek used Porzingis at center and used a smaller lineup to take Magic starting center and leading rebounder Nikola Vucevic away from the rim. New York out-rebounded Orlando 50-43, led by Porzingis, who had 9.

Evan Fournier was the only starter to shoot over 50 percent from the floor as the team shot 41 percent from the field. He had a game-high 22 points on 8-for-15 shooting. Terrance Ross, who had 24 points in the win against the Atlanta Hawks Saturday, struggled again from the floor shooting 3 for 10 and missed all 5 of his 3-point attempts.

“No, I don’t think we played hard enough offensively. I thought we played harder on the defensive end than the offensive end and we’re trying to be a running team and we didn’t commit to that for forty-eight minutes.” – Magic Head Coach Frank Vogel on his team’s effort

Besides the solid shooting from Fournier, the Magic got a good effort off the bench from D.J. Augustin. Augustin kept the Magic in the game in the opening half by scoring 11 of his 15 points in the opening half and helped the Magic cut the Knicks lead to 1 with 6:42 left in the 2nd quarter. Unfortunately for the Magic, that was the closest they got to the lead for the rest of the game.

Orlando returns home Friday night as they take on in-state rival Miami Heat at Amway Center at 7pm. They have a rematch with this same Knicks team on Monday night as they are in the middle of a six-game home stand.

 

Points of Interest:

  • Vucevic had another double-double with 14 points and 10 rebounds, but left the game with an knee injury in the fourth quarter.
  • Orlando only had 11 assists as a team compared to New York’s 21
  • Orlando has lost 20 of its 30 home contests this season

 

Danny Thompson is a contributing sports reporter for Florida National News. He can also be found over at NBA Full Court Press Radio.

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