6:30 PM ET, December 2, 2007
STAPLES Center, Los Angeles, CA
LOS ANGELES (AP) -- The Orlando Magic are playing so well that they even found a way to beat the Lakers in Los Angeles.
Hedo Turkoglu sparked a pivotal 9-0 run with a 3-pointer that put Orlando ahead to stay, then added a layup with 55 seconds left to lead the Magic to a 104-97 victory Sunday night.
The victory was Orlando's first on the road against the Lakers after 10 straight losses, including their last two visits to the Forum. They have won only three of the last 18 meetings overall and nine of 30 since joining the NBA in 1990.
"I knew coming in today, it was going to be a tough game for us," Dwight Howard said after the Lakers held him to 17 points. "Some nights, we have to get contributions from everybody on our team. I think we did a great job of staying composed through all the adversity that happened throughout the game and got a good win."
Orlando is 15-4 in its first season under coach Stan Van Gundy, matching the best start in the franchise's 19-year history. The Magic had the same record to begin the 1994-95 campaign and matched that the following season. Just four years ago, they opened 1-18.
Orlando also is 11 games over .500 for the first time since finishing the strike-delayed 1998-99 season 33-17, and leads the NBA with a 10-2 road mark.
Rashard Lewis led the Magic with 18 points. Backup point guard Carlos Arroyo wasn't with the club after returning to Orlando on Saturday night to be with his ill 3-year-old daughter, Gabriella. He also will miss the finale of the five-game road trip, which is at Golden State.
Turkoglu finished with 14 points, and is the only Orlando player to reach double figures in every game this season. He also leads the team with 99 fourth-quarter points.
Kobe Bryant scored 28 points for the Lakers, 19 in the first quarter. Lamar Odom had 19 points and 17 rebounds, and center Andrew Bynum blocked seven shots while helping neutralize Howard in the paint.
"I thought Andrew did a good job defensively and was able to contain Howard in there," Lakers coach Phil Jackson said. "That's a sub-par game I would guess for Howard, after all those write-ups we read about him."
Luke Walton's layup put Los Angeles ahead 91-89 with 5 1-2 minutes left. Teammate Jordan Farmar then forced Keith Bogans into a turnover and took off the other way on a fast break, feeding Odom for a slam dunk. But the basket was waived off because of a charging call against Farmar, who slammed into Keyon Dooling a split-second after dishing off.
"That was a big momentum change," Jackson said. "We got a steal and Jordy went down the court and drew a charge, instead of just moving the ball ahead and doing the right things on the 2-on-1 break. It turned into a four-point play because they took a basket away from us, and they came down and scored. Then Turkoglu hit a 3 to give them the lead, and it spiraled down from there."
The Magic led by as many as 10 points early in the third quarter before the Lakers pulled ahead 73-70 with an 18-5 run, capped by Vladimir Radmanovic's layup with 3:36 left in the period. Neither team led by more than three during an 11:06 span of the second half before J.J. Redick made a 3-pointer, two free throws and a 15-footer in a 63-second span to give Orlando an 85-80 lead with 8:23 to play.
"They executed better than we did," Bryant said. "We did a pretty good job on our rotations, but they just knocked down shots right in our face."
The Magic missed 11 of their first 15 shots while Los Angeles pulled out to a 23-15 lead, their biggest of the game. Bryant scored the last 11 points of the Lakers' opening run, making three shots from 3-point range in a 59-second span and following that with a slam dunk off an alley-oop pass by Derek Fisher.
Maurice Evans and Brian Cook faced their former teammates for the first time since getting traded to Orlando on Nov. 20 for Trevor Ariza. Evans played 21 minutes and had nine points, while Cook had three points in 9 minutes. Ariza, who has had less than 16 minutes of playing time since becoming a Laker, spent the entire game on the bench.
Orlando is 14-0 when leading after three quarters (9-0 on the road), and 11-0 when holding an opponent under 100 points. ... The Magic have never won a season series from the Lakers, but have a chance to remedy that when the Lakers visit Orlando on Feb. 8. ... The Magic, 10-for-30 from behind the 3-point arc, are now 8-2 when making 10 or more 3-point baskets. The Lakers were 8-for-29 on 3-point attempts. ... Orlando had a 25-24 advantage in assists, and improved to 11-0 under those circumstances.
Team Stat Comparison
|FGM-FGA||38-88 (.432)||40-97 (.412)|
|3PM-3PA||10-30 (.333)||8-29 (.276)|
|FTM-FTA||18-21 (.857)||9-10 (.900)|
|Fast Break Points||14||15|
|Fouls (Tech/Flagrant)||16 (0/0)||21 (0/0)|