basketball | nba

Orlando Magic vs. Charlotte Hornets Pick & Prediction MAY 7TH 2021

FinishedTV: BSNTime Warner Cable Arena Charlotte

553Orlando Magic
554Charlotte Hornets

216o -110
-7.5 -110
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The Charlotte Hornets will meet another team outside the playoff mix when the Orlando Magic pay a visit Friday night.

The Hornets hope they put together a better performance than the last time they played a team on the outside looking in.

"We've just got to keep pushing, no excuses," Hornets coach James Borrego said.

The eighth-place Hornets (32-34) are coming off a puzzling performance in their 120-99 home loss to the Chicago Bulls on Thursday night. They have more work to do to secure a spot in the Eastern Conference playoffs.

Charlotte committed 15 turnovers, and even 16-for-35 shooting on 3-pointers wasn't enough to overcome them.

The Magic (21-45) have been eliminated from playoff contention. Orlando is 3-8 across its past 11 games with six games remaining.

The Magic had a practice day Thursday that coach Steve Clifford said he hopes was a good chance to work out some kinks.

"There are some of the things at this level, whether guys have been together or not, that we should be able to do better than we are without a ton of practice time," Clifford said.

The Hornets are playing on back-to-back nights, but with the result of the Chicago game it puts additional emphasis on taking care of business against Orlando.

"I don't want to run these guys into the ground," Borrego said.

The Hornets' situation is further complicated by the status of forward Miles Bridges, who is out of action because of the NBA's health and safety protocols.

With that development, Charlotte moved center Bismack Biyombo into the starting lineup, though that shift likely was based on matchups and Borrego could go with another set-up for the Orlando game. Biyombo provide two points and six rebounds in 18 minutes.

It also was a dismal outing for rookie sensation LaMelo Ball, who shot 1 for 10 from the field for four points, though he supplied nine assists.

And Charlotte didn't have guard Devonte' Graham again because of knee discomfort.

The good news for the Hornets is that Malik Monk poured in 20 points, which might be a sign that he's returning to form. He made 6 of 11 attempts from 3-point range. Also on the plus side, P.J. Washington returned after missing a game because of personal reasons.

Rebounding on the defensive end was among the problem areas for the Hornets, who often have a significant size disadvantage.

"We've got to clean that up," Borrego said.

Orlando is also coming off a lopsided loss with Wednesday night's 132-96 pounding from the Boston Celtics.

Clifford said the transition defense wasn't up to his standards. The Magic's offense had some glitches as well.

"We're just inconsistent with the times the ball hits the paint," Clifford said.

Orlando will be without forward Wendell Carter Jr., who wasn't slated to be on the trip to Charlotte as he deals with an injured left eye, Clifford said. Carter averages 11.5 points per game.

According to reports out of Orlando, the Magic are set to add Admiral Schofield to the roster. Schofield recently played for Charlotte's G League team in the Orlando bubble.

--Field Level Media

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Orlando Magic vs. Charlotte Hornets

Terrence Ross came off the bench to score a season-high 35 points, and the playoff-bound Orlando Magic ended the Charlotte Hornets' season with a 122-114 victory on Wednesday night.

Ross scored 19 of his points in the first half, when the Magic led by as many as 13, and then took over again down the stretch when the Magic led by as many as 14. He finished 12 of 19 from the field and 6 of 10 from 3-point range.

Ross' performance overshadowed a 43-point explosion by Charlotte's Kemba Walker in the defeat.

The Magic (42-40) remained the No. 7 seed in the Eastern Conference playoffs with the victory, and will face second-seeded Toronto in the first round of the playoffs.

The Hornets (39-43) were hoping to claim the eighth and final Eastern Conference playoff spot, needing a win plus a loss by Detroit at New York. But it became clear early on that the Pistons would rout the Knicks, leaving Charlotte on the outside of the playoff field.

The Magic also received 27 points from Aaron Gordon, 18 from D.J. Augustin, and 14 from Evan Fournier. The Magic shot 54.5 percent from the field.

The Magic played without two starters, All-Star Nikola Vucevic and Jonathan Isaac. Vucevic was out because of illness, and Isaac was in concussion protocol.

Walker was 16 of 25 from the field, on a night when the Hornets shot 52.6 percent from the field. The Hornets also got 22 points from Jeremy Lamb, 18 from Miles Bridges, and 12 from Dwayne Bacon.

The Hornets had won two of the three previous games against the Magic this season, but the Magic routed the Hornets 127-89 in Orlando in their most-recent game Feb. 14.

The Hornets jumped out to a quick 16-8 lead but Ross came off the bench to lead the Magic back to a 30-25 lead after one quarter. The Magic then pushed the lead to 13 on four occasions in the second quarter, the last at 53-40, before Walker led a Charlotte comeback and sliced the margin to 62-58 at halftime. The Magic led 97-88 after three quarters.

Orlando's biggest lead down the stretch was 116-102 with five minutes remaining.

--Field Level Media