Magic rally stuns Durant-less Warriors

Rappler.com
Aaron Gordon and the Magic pull off a stunner against a Warriors side playing minus Kevin Durant

 

 

CLUTCH. Aaron Gordon fuels the Magic’s incredible run agains the defending champions. Photo from NBA Twitter

 

MANILA, Philippines – Just a day after a buzzer-beating loss to Dwyane Wade and the Miami Heat, the Golden State Warriors absorbed another heartbreaker.

The defending champions blew a double-digit lead in the final quarter as the Orlando Magic pulled off a stunning 103-96 victory in the NBA on Thursday, February 28 (Friday, March 1, Manila time) at Amway Center in Orlando, Florida.

Playing minus All-Stars Kevin Durant (rest) and Andre Iguodala (illness), the Warriors still looked headed for an easy road win behind Steph Curry, DeMarcus Cousins and Klay Thompson.

But the Magic closed out the game with a blistering 14-2 rally, with Aaron Gordon scoring half of the decisive run on the way to a huge upset win that snapped Orlando’s 11-game losing streak.


 

Gordon finished with a double-double of 22 points and 15 rebounds as the Magic erased a 70-81 deficit at the start of the 4th quarter.

Terrence Ross added 16 points and Nikola Vucevic also had an all-around game of 12 points, 13 rebounds, 6 assists and 3 blocks for the Magic, who improved to 29-34.

After back-to-back losses, the Warriors are now precariously holding on to the top spot in the West with a 43-19 slate.

Curry paced the Warriors with 33 points, 8 rebounds and 6 assists, while Cousins had 21 points and 11 boards. Thompson also added 21 markers.


 

Curry sank only one basket in the 4th quarter.

The Magic shot just 5-of-23 from the field in the 3rd quarter and trailed 81-70 going into the 4th. They led by 8 points at halftime.

Ross nailed a three-pointer in the 4th to spark a 15-4 run. His final three-pointer of the game, with 4:16 left, made it 89-89. – With reports from Agence France-Presse