Bulls welcome slumping Magic
(Sports Network) – The Orlando Magic are slipping out of the playoff picture,
and will aim to snap a back-breaking four-game losing streak this evening when
they open a tough four-game road swing against the Chicago Bulls at the United
Orlando fell to the Houston Rockets on Sunday, 97-93, and are now tied with
New Jersey for the eighth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.
Grant Hill ended with 21 points and seven rebounds for the Magic, who come
into tonight’s game having lost six in a row on the road. Dwight Howard was a
force for Orlando with 18 points and 16 rebounds, but Orlando fell for the
eighth time in 10 contests.
After tonight, the Magic will see tough road tilts against Denver, San Antonio
The Magic are just 9-18 as the visitor this season and have lost six of their
last eight against the Bulls. Orlando did capture the lone meeting between the
clubs this season on November 1.
The Magic, though, have dropped five of their last eight in Chicago.
Ben Wallace made his return to Detroit on Sunday as a member of the Bulls, but
Chicago was undone by Chris Webber’s tip-in with 2.2 ticks left and lost 95-93
to the Pistons at The Palace.
Webber got a hold of the ball and scored the deciding basket after Chauncey
Billups put up a jumper. With one last chance for the win, Ben Gordon missed a
three-pointer from the left wing to end the game.
Gordon netted 21 points and P.J. Brown had 19 points with 12 boards for the
Bulls, who had a three-game winning streak halted. Luol Deng scored 18 points
and grabbed eight boards, while Chris Duhon donated 12 points in defeat.
Wallace, meanwhile, was booed each time he touched the ball and finished with
six points and eight boards.
Detroit beings a three-game homestand tonight that will also see visits from
Golden State and New Orleans/Oklahoma City. The club is an Eastern Conference-
best 22-7 at home this year and have won five of their last six as the host.
The Pistons lead the Central Division by 4 1/2 games over Cleveland.