James Harden, visiting the Nets Hammer Magic
James Harden scored a hat-trick and Kevin Durant continued his strong scoring pace with 30 points, as the Brooklyn Nets qualified for a 123-90 win over hosts Orlando Magic on Wednesday.
Harden finished with 17 points, 11 rebounds and 11 assists to help Brooklyn win for the third time in his current six-game run. Durant, who entered on Wednesday averaging 29.5 points per game, was nearly perfect from the ground with 11 of 12 field goals, 6 of 7 free throws and his 3-point attempts.
Durant started the season with 12 consecutive games of 20 or more points, an outstanding record as well as a personal best performance.
LaMarcus Aldridge led the Brooklyn team with 21 points and eight rebounds, while Deandre Pimbri scored 11 points and Jevon Carter contributed ten points and five assists. Brooklyn player Joe Harris finished with nine points, including a three-pointer win.
The Nets led 94-75 after three quarters before beating Orlando 29-15 in the last period. Brooklyn fired 50 percent of the land (46 versus 93) and 43 percent of the 3-point range (16 versus 37).
Orlando’s Cole Anthony came in averaging 20.2 points per game, but he went to 0 for 5 out of a 3-point range and was limited to 10 points. Anthony, the third youngest player in magic history (behind Shaquille O’Neal and Dwight Howard) to make his third match of 30 points, also had eight rebounds and three steals.
Magic lost Wendell Carter Jr. to an injury to his left eye he suffered in the third quarter. Carter Jr. finished with nine points and five rebounds in 18 minutes as his four-game winning streak ended.
Terrence Ross scored the team’s highest with 17 points from the bench for Orlando, who went 4 to 33 from outside the arc. Mo Bamba contributed 14 points and grabbed nine rebounds, while Franz Wagner scored 10 points, seven rebounds and six rebounds.
Orlando only allowed 97.8 points per game over his previous four games, but the Nets took a first-half lead 65-53 as Aldridge earned three triples and 13 points during the second quarter over Brooklyn’s 37-point lead.
–Field Media Level