Through three quarters, it appeared the Orlando Magic were going to end their ever-increasing losing streak. Sadly, they couldn't hold an eight-point fourth-quarter advantage, as Carmelo Anthony notched 16 of his game-high 40 points in the final frame to lead the New York Knicks to a 114-106 win over the Magic on Saturday night at the Amway Center.
"Clearly we have to learn how to win, if that makes sense," Magic guard Arron Afflalo said. "Coach is doing a great job in terms of the schemes of the game plan. We're definitely competing hard as players, but we need to learn how to win."
In addition to Anthony's 40-point, six-rebound, six-assist effort, the Knicks (23-10) got 18 points and six rebounds from J.R. Smith; 15 points, eight rebounds, and seven assists from Jason Kidd; 14 points and 12 rebounds from Tyson Chandler; and 11 points from A'mare Stoudemire.
Orlando (12-21) was led by 29 points apiece from Jameer Nelson and Afflalo, with Nelson adding eight assists. Nikola Vucevic had 11 points and 18 rebounds, Andrew Nicholson tallied 11 points, and J.J. Redick (nine points) and DeQuan Jones (eight points and six rebounds) also provided solid contributions.
The Magic made 41 of 85 (48.2%) shots from the field and 10 of 26 (38.5%) from 3-point range, while New York was 42 of 88 (47.7%) from the field and 12 of 33 (36.4%) from downtown. Orlando held a 45-40 rebounding edge and a 44-36 advantage on points in the paint, but committed 14 turnovers that the Knicks converted into 23 points. Meanwhile, the Magic scored 13 points off eight New York turnovers.
After winning the first quarter 36-27, Orlando lost the second period 32-19. The Magic outscored the Knicks 34-22 in the third quarter, but were beaten 33-17 in the fourth.
"I told our guys that this is about different challenges throughout the course of the season and everyone wants to win – it's what makes us competitors," Magic coach Jacque Vaughn said. "We did a lot of good things tonight."
Orlando travels to Portland on Monday for a 10:00 pm tip-off on FS Florida.
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