Howard and Magic pound Atlanta
Orlando, FL (Sports Network) – Dwight Howard had 11 points, 11 rebounds and
three blocks to lead the Orlando Magic to a 98-79 drubbing of the Atlanta
Hawks at TD Waterhouse Center.
Carlos Arroyo led six double-digit scorers with 15 points while Hedo Turkoglu
added 14 points for the Magic, who have won three in a row and seven of their
last eight contests. Keith Bogans and Keyon Dooling netted 13 apiece in the
“Based on all our other games with this team, this is kind of the last type of
game we expected, but it is nice to have one,” said Orlando coach Brian Hill.
“I thought we really got some good contributions from everybody and all of our
guys, starting with Keith Bogans. (He) did a really good job on Joe Johnson
and limiting him. He came out with really good defensive energy early in the
game and I thought that really set the tone. It got us out on the break, we
got a lot of easy baskets, and we were just able to open the game up right
from the beginning.”
Shelden Williams chipped in 16 points and eight rebounds and Joe Johnson
donated 16 for the Hawks, who have lost five of their last six games. Tyronn
Lue and Salim Stoudamire each score 14 points.
“We just didn’t come in ready to play tonight,” said Johnson. “We got off to a
terrible start. We just didn’t have any experience to come back. We fought
hard and had a better second half. It wasn’t good enough. They came out and
protected their home floor. You have to give them credit for that.”
Orlando jumped out to a quick 14-3 lead, as the Hawks opened the game 1-of-11
from the floor, 1-of-4 from the line and committed three turnovers in the
first 6 1/2 minutes of the contest.
Despite turning the ball over seven times, Atlanta netted seven of the final
11 points to pull within 31-18 after the opening 12 minutes of play.
After the Hawks scored the first six points of the second quarter, narrowing
the gap to 31-24, the Magic closed the quarter on a 26-5 run, highlighted by
Arroyo’s three-point play, for a 57-29 advantage.
Atlanta added fuel to the spurt by going almost 10 minutes without a field
goal, missing 14 shots in a row until Williams’ jumper with 35.4 seconds to
play in the half.
The Hawks began the third quarter with a 12-2 rally, capped by Lue’s three-
point play, cutting the deficit to 59-41. Orlando didn’t convert its first
field goal until the 6:53 mark of the period.
The Magic were outscored 28-22 in the third quarter but still held a 79-57
margin heading into the final frame.
Atlanta tallied the first six points of the fourth to pull within 16, 79-63,
but that was as close as it would get.
The biggest applause of the night came with just about 3 1/2 minutes to play
when Orlando’s first round draft pick J.J. Redick made his NBA debut. He hit
1-of-2 from the floor for two points.
Orlando’s Grant Hill was not with the team due to the death of his
grandmother…Atlanta’s Speedy Claxton sat out with a knee injury…The Magic
have won five straight meetings at home…The Hawks’ Solomon Jones was called
for a flagrant foul with 1:34 remaining when he threw Bo Outlaw to the floor
as he surged to the basket…The Magic have won six in a row at
home…Orlando’s bench netted 49 points…Orlando shot 46 percent from the
floor while the Hawks connected on 36 percent of their shots, including 4-
of-20 in the second quarter.