Recap: Toronto Raptors 97, Orlando Magic 86 | Magic Basketball

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Nov 18

Recap: Toronto Raptors 97, Orlando Magic 86

AP Photo/THE CANADIAN PRESS, Frank Gunn

BOX SCORE

Nothing like a little dejavu. Sort of.

Against the Detroit Pistons on Friday, the Orlando Magic came back from a 13-point deficit to escape with a win.

Against the Toronto Raptors, the Magic came back from a 13-point deficit and led 74-73 with 8:29 left in the game. That’s where things took a turn for the worse for Orlando, however.

The Raptors proceeded to go on a 19-4 run and came away with an 11-point victory, all thanks to Jose Calderon’s precision passing. Calderon systematically picked apart the Magic’s defense, assisting on 15 of Toronto’s 19 points during the run.

Calderon started things off with a drive-and-kick pass to Linas Kleiza for a three-pointer from the right wing. Then on the ensuing possession, Amir Johnson took a handoff pass from Calderon and drilled a three-point shot from the right corner. A few minutes later, Calderon executed a 1/5 pick-and-roll with Andrea Bargnani, with Bargnani making an 8-foot jumper in the paint. Then on the next play down, Bargnani made a 15-foot jumper alongside the right baseline on a feed from Calderon — Johnson did a nice job of setting a pin-down screen for Bargnani, freeing him up for the shot.

At this point, the score was 87-78 in favor of Toronto and Orlando was reeling. That’s when Calderon finished the Magic off and put them out of their misery. First, he found DeMar DeRozan for an alley-oop dunk in transition following a steal from Bargnani. Then Calderon executed a 1/4 pick-and-roll with Johnson on the left side of the court and made a skip pass to Kleiza for a three-pointer in the right corner.

Ballgame.

It’s rare that a player dominates a game with his passing, unless you’re name is Rajon Rondo (who does it regularly), but that’s what Calderon did against Orlando. Consider this: Calderon, by himself, had as many assists (18) as the Magic had as a team. In the decisive fourth quarter, Calderon had 10 assists and accounted for 23 of the Raptors’ 30 points in the period without scoring a single point. Those are mind-blowing numbers.

While Orlando was struggling to create shots for themselves offensively (especially with J.J. Redick unable to play due to an illness), Calderon was doing it effortlessly for Toronto and it’s why they won.

MVP (Most Valuable Player)

Starting at point guard for an injured Kyle Lowry (bone bruise), Calderon picked apart the Magic’s defense with his passing all afternoon. Stat of the day? Calderon: 18 assists (including 10 in the fourth quarter alone). Orlando: 18 assists.

X-Factor

Amir Johnson (15 points) and Linas Kleiza (12 points) gave the Raptors a huge lift off the bench, particularly in the fourth quarter, where they combined to score 24 of Toronto’s 30 points in the period.

Defining Moment

After coughing up a 13-point lead and trailing 74-73 early in the fourth quarter, the Raptors responded by going on a 19-4 run that allowed them to regain control of the game. Calderon’s passing wizardry mystified the Magic during the run.

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