Looking to build off of its win in Boston earlier in the week, Orlando welcomed the Portland Trail Blazers into town on Thursday night and were hoping to get over the .500 mark. Instead, the Magic had to watch Trail Blazers’ point guard Damien Lillard go off for a season-high 41 points and led Portland to a 128-114 win over Orlando at the Amway Center.
The loss for the Magic brings the club to 2-3 on the season despite receiving a 24-point, 11-rebound effort from center Nikola Vucevic. Terrance Ross came off the bench for Orlando and chipped in 21 points in the loss. Orlando will now go on the road and play again on Saturday night to face the undefeated Milwaukee Bucks (4-0) at the Fiserv Forum. Tip-off is slated for 8:30 p.m.
”If you look at the offensive numbers, you ought to win this game,” Orlando Magic head coach Steve Clifford said. ”But the biggest thing tonight was our defense. It started with the first five minutes when we made mistake after mistake. We just weren’t good.”
The effort on the defensive was lackadaisical from the get go, as Portland was able to get to the rim most of the night as Lillard didn’t start his scoring barrage until the second half. Fellow teammate CJ McCollum held the fort down in the first half, as he ended up finishing the game with 21 points on the night.
Based on the offensive number for the Magic, Clifford’s club was efficient shooting the basketball, going 43-of-86 (50 percent) from the field and 12-of-30 (40 percent) from 3-point distance. Orlando forward Aaron Gordon has a relatively quiet night, scoring 17 points on 6-of-11 shooting.