NBA Game Summary - Orlando at Washington
(Wednesday, March 5th)
Final Score: Orlando 122, Washington 92
Washington, DC (Sports Network) - Dwight Howard led a balanced Orlando attack with 20 points and 11 rebounds, and the Magic handed the Washington Wizards their worst home loss of the season, 122-92, at Verizon Center.
Howard made 7-of-12 field-goal attempts and was a perfect 6-for-6 from the foul line, while Rashard Lewis, Maurice Evans and Keith Bogans scored 17 apiece to help Orlando win its third straight and for the sixth time in the last seven games.
"We tried to come out with a lot of intensity and play extremely hard from the beginning of the game," Howard said. "I was telling the guys 'we have to set the tempo from the beginning.' We ran the floor and did a lot of good things. We are focusing on how to get better. Each game we try and work on something to make us better."
Jameer Nelson had nine points to go with his game-high 10 assists, while Carlos Arroyo contributed 11 points and six helpers, and the Magic led wire- to-wire, shooting 56 percent as a team.
Antawn Jamison led Washington with 19 points and six rebounds, but the Wizards shot just 39 percent in the opening half to fall behind by an insurmountable margin, and saw their two-game win streak halted.
DeShawn Stevenson had 17 points and Nick Young, Oleksiy Pecherov and Roger Mason added 15, 15 and 14, respectively, off the bench in extended garbage time.
"It was a disappointing performance top to bottom," said Wizards guard Antonio Daniels. "Against a division opponent like Orlando, you want to come out and play better. We've got to put it behind us and look forward to Toronto now."
A 14-4 run to close the first quarter gave Orlando a 34-20 lead heading to the second. The Wizards closed within nine early in the period, but couldn't get any closer, and the Magic advantage was 59-44 going to the break.
Howard's baseline bank shot pushed the Orlando edge to 67-50 with just over eight minutes to go in the third, and Nelson's three ahead of the three-minute mark inflated the cushion to 79-57.
It was 89-67 at the start of the fourth, and the margin only increased from there. Hedo Turkoglu got into the lane and scored on a nifty finger roll while drawing a foul, then completed the three-point play to make it 102-72 with 8:11 remaining.
Washington's 118-92 loss to Denver, on November 9, 2007, was previously the worst home setback of the season...The Wizards shot 42.7 percent from the floor for the game, and did hit 9-of-21 three-point attempts...Orlando had 27 assists on 46 field goals, and forced 15 Wizards turnovers.
03/06 00:07:30 ET