March 15, 2019 / 1:25 AM / 5 months ago

Gordon, Magic blowout Cavaliers

Aaron Gordon had 21 points as the Orlando Magic got a much-needed 120-91 blowout win against the visiting Cleveland Cavaliers on Thursday night.

Mar 14, 2019; Orlando, FL, USA; Cleveland Cavaliers head coach Larry Drew reacts against the Orlando Magic during the first quarter at Amway Center. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Nikola Vucevic had 19 points and 11 rebounds, and D.J. Augustin had 20 points and seven assists for the Magic.

Collin Sexton led the Cavaliers with 23 points, and Jordan Clarkson added 15 points off the bench.

The win came at an important time for Orlando, which had dropped four of its last five games. The Magic are now 1 1/2 games behind the Miami Heat for the eighth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.

Orlando avenged a disappointing 107-93 loss to Cleveland back on March 3. The Cavaliers managed to outscore Orlando 40-21 in the fourth quarter, beating the Magic during a stretch of six games in which Orlando lost to the three worst teams in the East.

Cleveland has the third-worst record in the NBA, with the Chicago Bulls looming two games ahead of the Cavaliers. A new rule change to the draft lottery means that each of the bottom three teams have an equal chance (14 percent) of getting the No. 1 pick.

Cleveland scored the first two baskets of the game, but it was all Orlando from that point on. The Magic opened up a double-digit lead early and led by as much as 16 in the first quarter, 24 in the second and 32 in the third.

Orlando shot 48.4 percent from the field in the game and made 14 of 31 3-pointers. All five Magic starters scored in double figures, with Evan Fournier and Jonathan Isaac chipping in 10 points each. Terrence Ross and Khem Birch added 14 and 13 points, respectively, off the bench, and Birch also had 11 rebounds.

Vucevic had 13 points in the opening quarter as the Magic jumped out to a 36-20 lead after one. They took a 61-41 lead into halftime.

Orlando has the next two days off before it plays the second game of a five-game homestand on Sunday against the Atlanta Hawks. Cleveland heads to Dallas for a game against the Mavericks on Saturday.

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