Pelicans blister nets to blow out Magic
The four-game losing streak is over.
The New Orleans Pelicans snapped the downer in demonstrative fashion, crushing the Magic 135-100 at Orlando.
New Orleans shot 55.6 percent from the field (50-of-90) and for a change, was solid from 3-point range at 42.9 percent (12-of-28).
Another sore spot all season long, free throw shooting, was a big plus as the Pelicans were 23-of-28 for 88.5 percent.
Brandon Ingram led six players in double figures with 27 points in 29 minutes while Zion Williamson finished with 23 points and seven assists in just 23 minutes in his first-ever game against the Magic.
Billy Hernangomez had perhaps his best game of the season off the bench with 18 points and 12 rebounds while Eric Bledsoe had a rare excellent shooting game, going 5-of-7 from 3-point range for 15 points.
Steven Adams had 12 points and nine rebounds and Jaxson Hayes had 10 points and six rebounds.
Orlando shot just 36.7 percent from the field and the Pelicans crushed the Magic 58-40 on the boards. New Orleans owned the paint by a 66-34 margin.
The Pelicans built a lead as large as 42 points and coasted to victory, largely on the strength of a monstrous second quarter where New Orleans outscored Orlando 45-25 and with a 34-18 bulge in the third quarter.
This was a case of a mediocre to average team playing well and a bad team living up to its billing.
It was never a contest after the first quarter and Stan Van Gundy was able to rest top players and empty his bench.
The 35-point win is the largest margin of victory of the season for New Orleans.
It was the fourth straight loss for Orlando and the 23rd loss in 28 games for the Magic, who are anything but magic.
The Pelicans return home to host San Antonio Saturday night.
At 26-33 with 13 games remaining, the Pelicans find themselves three games behind the Spurs for the 10th and final play-in spot to the playoffs.
Though the term is bandied about too much and used way too much, Saturday night’s game is a virtually certain must-win for the Pelicans to have any shot at getting to the final spot in the postseason tournament.
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Born and raised in the New Orleans area, CCSE CEO Ken Trahan has been a sports media fixture in the community for nearly four decades. Ken started NewOrleans.com/Sports with Bill Hammack and Don Jones in 2008. In 2011, the site became SportsNOLA.com. On August 1, 2017, Ken helped launch CrescentCitySports.com. Having accumulated national awards/recognition (National Sports Media Association, National Football…