For the fourth time in as many meetings with the Orlando Magic, the Toronto Raptors were the better team. This time, in a game that saw 12 lead changes, the Raptors beat the Magic 97-95 on Thursday night at the Amway Center.
"I just think the basketball gods are against us right now," Magic guard J.J. Redick said. "They've turned their backs on us. We need to get back in their good graces. Tonight was a first step, if a loss can be a step in the right direction, because we competed the whole game."
The Raptors (16-27) got 22 points and seven assists from DeMar DeRozan, who was 10 for 17 from the field, including the game-winner at the buzzer. Meanwhile, Amir Johnson tallied 21 points and 10 rebounds, Alan Anderson notched 13 points, Ed Davis finished with 12 points and eight rebounds and Jose Calderon and Terrence Ross recorded 10 points apiece, with Calderon adding six assists.
Orlando (14-28) dropped to 8-15 at home despite 19 points and 14 rebounds from Nikola Vucevic, who was 8 of 14 from the field. Arron Afflalo registered 16 points, Glen Davis had 15 points and seven boards, Jameer Nelson totaled 14 points, 11 assists and seven rebounds, Redick finished with 14 points and E'Twaun Moore registered 11 points.
Toronto made 39 of 78 (50.0%) shots from the floor, including 4 of 16 (25.0%) from behind the arc, whereas the Magic finished 35 of 81 (43.2%) overall and 8 of 18 (44.4%) from downtown. Orlando outrebounded the visitors 41-38 and held a 42-38 advantage on points in the paint.
The Raptors outscored the Magic 22-20 in the first quarter, but Orlando won the second period 27-26 before losing the third quarter 27-19. The hosts outscored Toronto 29-22 in the fourth quarter.
"I thought there were multiple times throughout the course of the game where we got multiple stops in a row and that's what we want to focus on, is being able to get stops on demand," Magic coach Jacque Vaughn said. "That's the basketball we need to see every night."
Orlando welcomes Detroit to town on Sunday at 6:00 pm on FS Florida.
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