The Washington Wizards beat the Orlando Magic 131-116 on Wednesday night.
Cole Anthony’s Return
Orlando looked to build off of the return of rookie point guard Cole Anthony. Anthony’s return lit a spark under the Magic’s seat, but that same spark fizzled out in the second quarter, where the Magic were outscored 39-27 and never recovered from that large deficit. Cole Anthony returned after 25 games and picked up right where he left off, scoring at will. Part of a young and dynamic backcourt, R.J. Hampton had his first chance to play with Anthony, and they both took full advantage and looked extremely electric.
Cole Anthony had this statement in response, “I got to get in better shape, didn’t play that well”. This remark from Anthony should let fans know that he is fired up at the Magic’s struggles. Anthony is hungry to improve and ready to bring a competitive force back to Orlando.
Mo Bamba Came To Play
Mo Bamba put up a career-high 19 points on 7-for-12 shooting in just 24 minutes off the bench. Bamba, 22-years-old, registered eight rebounds, two blocks, and one steal, while being the defensive anchor that the reserve unit desperately needed when playing against the NBA’s top scorer in Bradley Beal. Bamba came to play with intensity and it quite definitely showed up in the stat sheet.
On the opposition, the Washington Wizards came out with a vengeance as the Magic took the last game in their previous matchup. After missing the last five games (right hip contusion), Bradley Beal scored a game-high 26 points. Russell Westbrook also did what he does best, a little bit of everything. Westbrook put up an impressive 24 points, 15 assists, and added 14 rebounds to the Wizards rout of the Magic. It was Westbrook’s 20th triple-double of the season and now has triple-doubles in nine of his last 12 games.
- The Wizards’ 57.6% shooting percentage set a new season-high in the category, topping their 55.6% set against the Pacers last week.
- From deep, Washington shot 19-36 (.528) from deep, setting a new season-high in 3-point makes and finishing one shy of tying the franchise’s all-time record.
- Rui Hachimura was back in action after missing the last two games (right shoulder tightness). Hachimura had nine points, seven rebounds, two assists, three steals and finished with a plus-12 rating in 30 minutes.
- The Magic fall to 17-34, 14th in the Eastern Conference. They trail the Chicago Bulls for the final spot in the play-in tournament by five games.
The Magic look to bounce back on Friday night when they take on the Pacers at home.