Howard powers Magic past CavsFeb 4, 2012 - 5:10 AM Orlando, FL (Sports Network) - Dwight Howard had 19 points, 16 rebounds and eight blocks, as the Magic downed the Cavaliers, 102-94, on Friday.
Jason Richardson added 19 points and Hedo Turkoglu had 18 for the Magic, who have won two straight on the heels of a season-high four-game skid. Ryan Anderson finished with 17 points and eight rebounds.
"I just tried to be aggressive on the defensive end and block shots," Howard said. "The last couple of games we've been playing against a lot of quick guards who take it and go. So I was just trying to be the guy back there for us who could block shots and make our defense work."
Alonzo Gee scored a career-high 20 points in defeat. Kyrie Irving had 18, Antawn Jamison added 16 and 12 rebounds, and Ramon Sessions chipped in 14 for the Cavaliers. They have lost two straight and three of four overall. Anderson Varejao finished with 12 points and 15 rebounds.
Cleveland was down 10, 92-82, with three minutes left in the fourth when it began to employ the "Hack-a-Howard" technique. The tactic had its merits.
Howard made 1-of-2 on his first trip to the line and Sessions answered with a three-point play, cutting the deficit to eight. Howard again went 1-of-2 on his next trip and Varejao hit a pair from the charity stripe to make it 94-87. Gee then answered Howard's third straight 1-of-2 effort with a three.
But Cleveland would get no closer than five, as Howard made five of his final six free throws and Turkoglu added a basket to secure the Magic win.
"I don't know what we have to do as far as trying to bring that same rhythm that we had in the fourth quarter to the first quarter, but we'll figure it out," said Cleveland head coach Byron Scott.
Earlier, Orlando jumped out to an 18-9 lead, but the Cavaliers closed the first on an 8-1 run to make it a two-point game. Richardson paced Orlando with five first-quarter points, while Varejao, Irving and Gee had four apiece for Cleveland.
The parity wouldn't last. The Magic, who averaged a paltry 76.0 points per game during their recent slide, turned it on in the second, building their advantage to as many as 15 before taking a 48-37 lead at the half.
They continued to pull away after the break. The margin stretched to 20 on a Chris Duhon trey and Turkoglu paced the squad with seven third-quarter points.
Howard went 9-for-16 from the free-throw line despite not attempting a foul shot until the fourth quarter...Orlando has won seven straight over Cleveland...The Magic have been without starting point guard Jameer Nelson since January 27.
- CLEVELAND: 94
Feb 3 9:30 PM
- CLEVELAND: 53
End of 3rd
Feb 3 8:50 PM
- CLEVELAND: 37
Feb 3 8:08 PM
- CLEVELAND: 17
End of 1st
Feb 3 7:35 PM
- CLEVELAND: 0
1st Quarter - 12:00
Feb 3 7:12 PM
- Cavaliers-Raptors Preview May 23
- Cavaliers-Raptors Preview May 23
- Magic formally introduce Frank Vogel as their new coach May 23
- Physical intensity picks up between Cavaliers and Raptors May 23
- Cavs' Jones suspended; Raptors coach Casey fined May 23
- Jones suspended, Casey fined by NBA for Game 3 actions May 22
- DeRozan, Raptors end Cavaliers' streak with 99-84 win May 22
- BC-AP Sports Preview Digest May 21
- Column: Savor our version of Magic-Bird - Curry vs LeBron May 20
- Raptors need Lowry to step up in Game 3 against Cavaliers May 20
- Magic officially announce Frank Vogel as new head coach May 20
- Tyronn Lue has perfect coaching touch for unbeaten Cavaliers May 20