UTAH – The Orlando Magic fall in a close game 109-102 to the Utah Jazz on the road behind Donovan Mitchell and Bojan Bogdanovic’s combined 60 points.
What’s notable is, Orlando won the turnover battle plus eleven, however, the game was won in huge part due to second chance opportunities or lack thereof depending one’s outlook.
Utah won the rebounding battle with 58 rebounds, 10 of them offensive rebounds, while Orlando was unable to keep Gobert and Ingles off the boards only logging 41 rebounds, 4 of which were offensive.
Both Gobert and Ingles finished with double-doubles, Gobert logging 19 boards, Ingles with 12 boards also connecting on all of his triples going 4/4.
“It opens up a lot of things when you can make three’s, especially with a guy like Rudy [Gobert] inside, you know you want to spread him out but I mean if you keep missing, he’s going to stay in there”, Evan Fournier on the presence of Gobert.
The Magic consequently, as a team only connected on 20% of their three-point attempts, which certainly contributed to their struggles. “We had the shots to win it, like I’m thinking about my three coming off of my left side, I’m naked open, I got to make that, if I make it we up two”, Fournier said.
“The biggest discrepancy obviously is we’re wide open shots, we got to make them”, said Coach Clifford.
Mitchell and Bogdanovic both finished the night with 30 points each with Bogdanovic sinking 6 three’s and Mitchell having an explosive dunk in the 4th sparking a Utah Jazz comeback.
“Mitchell just took over. Well it started actually two blown coverages for wide open three’s on stuff we went over at half time and those were big plays”, said Coach Clifford.
The Magic did have some bright spots in tonight’s loss. D.J. Augustin finished the night with 22 points on 8/10 shooting contributing heavily in the 4th quarter sparking Orlando’s comeback to take the lead midway through the final period albeit not enough to finish the night in the win column.
Markelle Fultz had another quality game with 14 points, 4 rebounds and 2 assists with Vucevic chipping in notching a double-double of 12 points and 11 rebounds shooting 4/15 from the field.
Vucevic’s thoughts on the game, “We had some very good looks, we just have to knock down, so the game was there for us to take it which is to make plays in the last two or three minutes.”
Coach Clifford was encouraged with his team’s play in the second half saying, “I thought we played a good second half, we fought hard, so I just told the guys, look if we were to play this hard in the first half we might have won.”
The Orlando Magic play their next game tonight on the road in Denver against the Nuggets and travel to Portland on Friday to matchup against the Damian Lillard and the Trail Blazers.