Magic 99, Bucks 81
Turkoglu hit 10 of 14 shots from the field, including three 3-pointers, and scored a season-high 25 points to push the Orlando Magic to an easy 99-81 victory over Milwaukee.
Turkoglu, who has struggled with his shooting all season, hitting only 41 percent from the field, is 29-for-41 (70.7 percent) in his last four games. He is averaging 22 points over that span after averaging 11.8 points.
“I knew my shot was eventually going to come around,” Turkoglu said. “It’s just a matter of confidence and getting the shot to fall. I might have relied too much on the jump shot, but I’ve been mixing up the drives with jumpers, and now it seems to be clicking.”
Turkoglu’s backup, Trevor Ariza, was almost as good, scoring 20 points and grabbing six rebounds in 31 minutes. In fact, Ariza was playing so well that Turkoglu didn’t get off the bench in the final 16 minutes. That prevented Turkoglu, who had a season-high nine rebounds, from getting his first double-double of the season.
“I wish I had known that because it would have been nice to get a double-double,” Turkoglu said. “But really, stats aren’t important at this point in the season. We have to reach our goal of making the playoffs and I want to do what I can to help us get there.”
The Magic currently hold the eighth spot in the East, barely ahead of New Jersey and New York.
Michael Redd led Milwaukee with 15 points, but hit only three of 16 shots from the field. This came one day after Redd scored 52 points on 18-of-32 shooting in an overtime loss to Chicago. Redd, who made eight 3-point attempts against the Bulls, was 0-for-3 from behind the arc against Orlando.
“We were a little spent emotionally and physically after the overtime loss,” Milwaukee coach Terry Stotts said. “Michael (Redd) had some good looks early and his threes were open, but we dug ourselves a hole early and couldn’t get out of it.”
Dwight Howard had 10 points and nine rebounds for the Magic, who ended a three-game losing streak. Orlando had 24 fast-break points to just five for Milwaukee.
The Bucks started slowly and were never really in the game. They were stone cold from the opening tip, hitting only two of their first 10 shots while turning the ball over six times. Milwaukee finished the half shooting 32.4 percent with 10 turnovers.
The Magic, meanwhile, shot 50 percent in the first half and led by as many as 20 points before settling for a 49-34 halftime advantage. Turkoglu had 15 points on 6-for-9 shooting and added eight rebounds.
The Magic scored nine straight points to start the second half to boost the lead to 24. Turkoglu had seven of those points, including the 3-pointer that made it 58-34 with 9:42 left in the period.
The Bucks never got closer than 16 points from there.
^Notes: Magic guard Grant Hill sat out his third straight game with a sore foot … Milwaukee shot 39.5 percent for the game. The Bucks are 0-22 when shooting less than 44.9 percent … Magic guard Keyon Dooling was 4-of-5 from the field after going 0-for-11 in his last two games … Bucks center Andrew Bogut, who had three straight double-doubles coming into the game, had zero points and three rebounds.