Aaron Gordon has been waiting to have his big breakout game of the season for the Orlando Magic and no one knew when that might happen. A good time for the power forward to have his best output of the year looked to be Sunday evening when the Magic hosted the New York Knicks, having their first opportunity to get over the .500 plateau through 16 games.
Gordon and the Magic made sure not to disappoint, as he scored a game-high 31 points and helped lead Orlando to a 131-117 victory over the Knicks at the Amway Center. With the win, Orlando improves to 9-8 on the season and above the .500 mark for the first time this campaign. Orlando will have its toughest test of the homestand when they host the Toronto Raptors tomorrow night.
”I guess it’s just the ball movement,” said Aaron Gordon. ”The ball was sticking a little bit earlier in the year, and the ball is jumping around the court. Everybody’s passing and making the right reads all over the floor.”
Ball movement has been very good for the Magic the last couple games, as Orlando is averaging 130.5 points per contest in its last two against the Lakers and Knicks. Gordon wouldn’t be the lone Magic player to have a good evening, with Nikola Vucevic also adding 28 points on the night.
Orlando (9-8) was powered by a strong opening quarter in which the Magic tied the franchise record for most points in a first quarter with 44. The Magic also scored 44 points in an opening quarter back on February 8, 2008.
Leading 44-31 after one period, Orlando stayed consistent the rest of the contest and kept the Knicks at arm’s length from making any kind of comeback in the second half.