Denton: Magic vs. Celtics Analysis (1/19/14)
Veteran Magic point guard Jameer Nelson (16 points and 10 assists) hit two free throws with 35 seconds left to give the Magic a 91-89 lead. After a Jeff Green basket and a missed free throw tied the game, Harris battled for a rebound with Kris Humphries, who was called for a personal foul. Harris calmly drilled two free throws with 10.1 seconds left for the winning points. Harris (18 points and seven rebounds) missed four free throws in the game, but the final two were true.
``Those were big free throw shots,’’ Harris admitted. ``Throughout the game I wasn’t shooting it well from the free throw line. Mentally, I just tried to regain focus and think about my preparation and what I had put into it. I just had the confidence that both of them were going to go down.’’
Orlando dodged a final possession when the Celtics (14-28) failed to get off a shot as Avery Bradley fired the ball out of bounds as the horn sounded. Close-outs on Green and Bradley prevented the Celtics from getting an open shot.
``When you are focused on winning the game and not on what you are doing individually you end up making those types of plays,’’ Afflalo said, referring to the defense on the final play. ``Honestly we made some mistakes on that last defensive play, but because the whole team was in tune with each other we covered for each other beautifully and they didn’t even get a shot off.’’
The Magic had lost the past 10 games to the Celtics, not beating them since Dec. 25, 2010. Eight of those losses came after Glen ``Big Baby’’ Davis left the Celtics in a sign-and-trade transaction and joined the Magic. Davis had 11 of his 17 points in the fourth quarter to steady the Magic throughout the final period.
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