May 26, 2018
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Turner, Holiday lead 76ers over Celtics 106-100

The Associated Press

BOSTON — Evan Turner scored 25 points, Jrue Holiday added 21 and the Philadelphia 76ers held off several fourth-quarter rallies to beat the Boston Celtics 106-100 on Friday night.

The Celtics cut the lead to four twice in the final period, 83-79 and 102-98, but couldn’t get any closer and fell to 2-3 with their only victories coming over winless Washington. The 76ers won their second game in three nights to improve to 3-2.

Turner had 11 rebounds and Holiday had 14 assists. Dorell Wright and Thaddeus Young scored 15 points apiece.

Paul Pierce scored 24 for Boston, and Kevin Garnett finished with 19. Rajon Rondo had 14 points and assisted on 20 of the Celtics’ 37 baskets.

Boston’s last lead was 10-9 on a 20-footer by Courtney Lee midway through the first quarter. Holiday then had a dunk to put Philadelphia ahead to stay.

The Celtics made a late run after the 76ers took a 100-88 lead on a reverse layup by Holiday with 4:19 to go. Boston closed to 100-94 on a short jumper by Jason Terry, one free throw each by Garnett and Pierce and a field goal by Pierce.

Young stopped the run with a short hook shot with 1:44 remaining, but Pierce made the next two baskets and the Celtics had a chance, trailing 102-98 with 26 seconds to go.

Turner was immediately fouled and sank both free throws. Then he converted a dunk with 17 seconds remaining for a 106-98 lead that ended Boston’s last hope.

The Celtics scored the first five points of the fourth quarter to trim Philadelphia’s lead to 83-79. Garnett made a jumper and Terry connected on a 3-pointer.

The Sixers responded with a 10-0 run to take a 93-79 lead with 8:21 left. But the Celtics scored the next seven, making it 93-86 when Terry sank a 17-footer.

The 76ers carried a 57-45 lead into halftime and increased their advantage to 73-58 when Wright was fouled attempting a 3-point shot and made all three free throws with 5:46 to go in the third.

Then the Celtics went on a 7-0 run on a jumper and two free throws by Brandon Bass, two more free throws by Pierce and another by Bass. That cut the lead to 73-65.

Terry’s 3-pointer with 56 seconds left in the third quarter made it 79-72, but Turner scored Philadelphia’s next four points for an 83-74 lead.

NETS 107, MAGIC 68: Something seemed radically amiss from the opening minutes Friday night.

The Brooklyn Nets’ Brook Lopez outfought the Orlando Magic’s Nik Vucevic to grab an offensive rebound and went up strong for a basket. But Lopez, a player not known for his passion, only was just beginning. Baskets, rebounds, blocks — he did it all the entire first half.

And he wasn’t the only one, either. The Nets were one or two steps quicker and much more physical all game long, and Brooklyn beat Orlando, 107-68, in front of an announced crowd of 17,532 at Amway Center in Orlando, Fla.

In a sign of just how little physicality Orlando employed, the Magic didn’t attempt a single foul shot until Reggie Evans committed a Flagrant-1 foul against Gustavo Ayón with 2:35 remaining in the third quarter.

The Magic also didn’t make a foul shot until Kyle O’Quinn sank a pair of them with 5:41 left in regulation.

Orlando finished with just eight free-throw attempts.

Lopez scored 14 points, collected 10 rebounds and blocked three shots.

As tipoff approached, Lopez insisted that he did his best over the summer not to pay attention to all the speculation that the Nets wanted to trade him to the Magic in a potential Dwight Howard deal.

But a few hours later, the 7-foot center from Stanford played as if a giant chip had been positioned on each of his shoulders.

He scored 11 of Brooklyn’s first 15 points and he set the tone for all that followed.

And what followed was ugly for Orlando (2-3), which played without injured starting point guard Jameer Nelson and injured starting small forward Hedo Turkoglu.

Magic coach Jacque Vaughn and many of his players repeatedly have said their team needs to play with all-out effort every game in order to compete against most teams. Against the Nets, a team that includes stars Deron Williams and Joe Johnson, the Magic couldn’t afford any lapses.

Williams finished with 12 points and four assists while Johnson added 13 points and four assists of his own.

They didn’t play great, but the Nets (2-2) didn’t need them to be spectacular — or anything close to spectacular — Friday.

Brooklyn’s 38-year-old Jerry Stackhouse hit three 3-pointers in the first half and finished with 11 points. Andray Blatche, a Washington Wizards castoff long on talent but short on discipline, added 15 points and nine boards.

E’Twaun Moore, who started at point guard in Nelson’s place, scored a team-high 18 points for Orlando.

The Nets took control of the game after Orlando cut Brooklyn’s lead to 21-19 with 10:57 remaining in the first half on a dunk by rookie Andrew Nicholson.

But the Nets then went on an 18-4 run that ended on a layup by Stackhouse.

The Magic now have lost three consecutive games.

Following a hard-fought loss Tuesday night to the Bulls in Chicago, they turned in a clunker Wednesday night against the Timberwolves in Minneapolis on the second night of a back-to-back.

The team could not use fatigue as an excuse Friday.

The Nets outrebounded them 48-35 and outscored them in the paint 46-30.

With 8:06 left in regulation and Orlando trailing 89-55, Vaughn took out veterans Arron Afflalo and J.J. Redick.

Ish Smith, Maurice Harkless, Moore, Nicholson and O’Quinn were on the court.

After 132 consecutive regular-season home sellouts, the Magic witnessed their second straight non-sellout.

The Magic will play the Nets again Sunday afternoon at Barclays Center in Brooklyn.

It’s tough to imagine an uglier performance.

Magic players on the bench watched with blank expressions on their faces as the final seconds eroded from the game clock.

They had to be thinking the same thing: tough to imagine a worse performance.

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