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Knicks rally in fourth quarter, beat Magic 113-105

March 7, 2017
Orlando Magic guard Evan Fournier (10) puts up a shot in front of New York Knicks forward Kristaps Porzingis (6) during the first half of an NBA basketball game in Orlando, Fla., Monday, March 6, 2017. (AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack)
Orlando Magic guard Evan Fournier (10) puts up a shot in front of New York Knicks forward Kristaps Porzingis (6) during the first half of an NBA basketball game in Orlando, Fla., Monday, March 6, 2017. (AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack)

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — The New York Knicks spent three quarters on the wrong side of matchups with Orlando, then found a few to their liking in the fourth.

Kyle O’Quinn was the spark when New York blew past the Magic in the final 12 minutes en route to a 113-105 victory on Monday night. The Knicks outscored Orlando 28-13 in the period, limiting Orlando to 17.5 percent shooting (3 of 17).

O’Quinn, who played all of 20 seconds in the first three periods, scored 11 points and grabbed eight rebounds to rally New York from a 92-85 deficit at the end of the third period.

Courtney Lee led the Knicks with 20 points and Lance Thomas added 17. Kristaps Porzingis scored 14 and Willy Hernangomez had 14 points and eight rebounds, but O’Quinn’s fourth quarter was the difference in the game.

“I was expecting a DNP (did not play), but the game flows, things happen and I said to myself, ‘Maybe I should stretch a little,’” O’Quinn said. “Then Coach called my name and I didn’t want to get subbed out. I thought it would be cool to stay on the floor a while.”

O’Quinn had plenty of help, though from some unusual sources. The Knicks played the entire game without Carmelo Anthony (injured knee), kept All-Star guard Derrick Rose on the bench the whole fourth quarter and used Porzingis for just the final 3:31 of the fourth quarter.

In their place, Knicks coach Jeff Hornacek sent out a lineup that featured O’Quinn, Justin Holiday, Chasson Randle, Thomas and Lee.

“Some nights that is going to happen,” Hornacek said. “We were rolling defensively, we extended the lead and the guys that were out there looked like they really enjoyed playing together. We were able to get some things going because of our defense. It’s a lot easier when you play like that.”

Orlando coach Frank Vogel could only roll his eyes at his team’s fourth-quarter execution, especially on defense. The Magic allowed the Knicks team of mostly reserves to hit 12 of 23 shots and go on 23-4 run to start the final period.

“Their bench played harder, but it wasn’t just against our reserves,” Vogel said. “We put our starters back in and (Knicks reserves) outplayed them, too. They played a better basketball game. They played with more energy, they shot 96 percent from the free throw line. They just played better. Give them credit.”

Elfrid Payton had his first triple-double of the season with 16 points, 10 assists and 11 rebounds. Evan Fournier led Orlando with 25 points and Aaron Gordon had 17 in the Magic’s third loss in four games.

The Magic went right at Anthony’s replacement, backup point guard Ron Baker, on virtually every possession. Fournier scored 11 points on him in the first six minutes, before New York went away from the attempt at a small-ball lineup.


KNICKS: Anthony, who has averaged 26.2 points and 7.1 rebounds in his career against the Magic, is expected to play Wednesday in Milwaukee. ... New York started a three-guard lineup of Rose, Baker and Lee. ... The Knicks missed their first six shots and trailed 11-0 to start the game.

MAGIC: Nikola Vucevic missed his second straight game with a sore Achilles tendon. ... Fournier had 18 points in 14 minutes in the first half. ... The Magic led by as many as 14 in the first half, before settling for a 54-51 halftime edge. ... The Magic lost at home to New York for the second time in less than a week.


Rose took an elbow in the eye from Porzingis that required a doctor’s examination after Sunday’s loss to Golden State. Rose had surgery on his eye in September of 2015 and said he has trouble with his vision because of that. “The noise, the crowd, the lights were all getting to me,” Rose said. “I had to ice they eye during the game and all night, but the doctors told me everything was OK.” Rose said it was the first time he’d take a hit to the eye since having the surgery.


Porzingis was selected with the fourth pick in the 2015 NBA draft. Orlando’s Mario Hezonja was the next pick. Porzingis has started 124 of the 125 games he’s played for the Knicks, averaging 16 points and 7.3 rebounds. Hezonja has started 11 of 135 games he’s played for the Magic and averaged 5.4 points and 2.1 rebounds.


KNICKS: Play at Milwaukee on Wednesday night. It’s the second of a four-game road swing for the Knicks.

MAGIC: Host Chicago on Wednesday night. The Magic are 0-2 against the Bulls this season.


This story has been corrected to show that Lee scored 20 points.

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