Thunder revenge loss against the Magic

Last night, the Oklahoma City Thunder (2-3) defeated the Orlando Magic (4-2) 108-99. After winning the first game of the season, the Thunder lost the next three (all at home), one of which was against the Magic. This time around, however, OKC prevailed in a fought game.

The Thunder started strong, taking advantage of the shots falling and keeping the Magic dry on offense. This moment didn’t last long. Vucevic started to score consistently (he will finish with 30 points) and led Orlando to close the first quarter ahead of five points, 33-28.
With what seemed to be a “tanking” line up (Maledon, Muscala, Diallo, Poku, Williams), Oklahoma City held Orlando to only four points in the first five minutes of the second quarter. Once the starters entered the game again, the team lead by a superb Bazley (19 points & 12 rebounds) ended the first half with a one-point lead: 52-51.

After the long break, the music didn’t change. Both teams went back and forth, lead changes and tied scores for most of the 3rd period. The Thunder gained another point lead (84-82 the score) by the end of it, thanks to a couple of solid plays by SGA and Diallo. To start the final twelve minutes, coach Daigneault relied once more upon the “tanking” line up. And again it resulted in a successful move. Maledon took charge of the offense and showed his potential. First he hit a three and then found Diallo with a sweet assist. With 7.30 left on the clock, the Thunder lead 94-91. With the starters back on the court, OKC went for another push. The lead increased to 99-93 with less than four minutes on the clock. However, Orlando never gave up, and thanks to the offensive rebounds (fifteen total by the end of the game), they kept themselves in the game. At least until Al Horford grabbed an offensive rebound after a George Hill three-point miss. On the extra possession, Al will score the exclamation three-pointer, which will give the Thunder a 105-97 lead with only 49.9 seconds left. Game – set – match.

UP NEXT:

The Thunder will play their next game on Monday night in Miami against the Heat.

Alberto Bodei

Twitter: @euro_thunder

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