Magic Secure Play-In Berth with Dominant 112-92 Win Over Hornets

Charlotte Hornets, Orlando Magic, NBA News
Jeremy Reper-USA TODAY Sports

Cole Anthony led the Orlando Magic to a resounding 112-92 win over the Charlotte Hornets, scoring 17 of his 21 points in the second quarter and ensuring an NBA play-in berth in the Eastern Conference playoffs.

The Magic showcased a strong team performance, with Jalen Suggs contributing 16 points, six assists, and three steals despite physical play. Paolo Banchero added 13 points and five assists, helping Orlando to a massive halftime lead.

Orlando’s playoff position is now secure, marking a significant achievement for the team and its best performance since the 2018-19 season.

“We set out to be playing our best basketball in March and April, and that’s what we’re going to continue to do,” Magic coach Jamahl Mosley said.

NBA NEWS & SCORES: Cole Anthony, Paolo Banchero, Jalen Suggs, Orlando Magic, Charlotte Hornets Updates

The team’s recent success has been notable, with the Magic winning 12 of their last 15 games, though they face a challenging schedule ahead.

“I think we continue to focus on one game at a time, continue to build our habits the right way and stick to our standard, knowing we’re there but not being satisfied with that,” Mosley said.

The Hornets, struggling of late, found some positives in rookies Brandon Miller and Vasilije Micic, who led their scoring. Suggs provided standout defensive efforts in the second quarter, proving to be a key to turning the game into a blowout.

“First-team All-Defense. That’s what that looked like,” Mosley said. “I think (Suggs) had a couple situations where he just stole the ball and you think it’s a foul because of how aggressive he was, and he’s doing it because he’s beating guys to spots. He’s so disruptive, and he’s capable of doing it on a consistent basis.”

NBA NEWS & SCORES: Cole Anthony, Paolo Banchero, Jalen Suggs, Orlando Magic, Charlotte Hornets Updates

The Magic’s first-half performance was particularly impressive, with a 40-9 run in the second quarter demonstrating their dominance.

“They know what to do defensively, and of course we did not have the right response,” Micic said. “That’s the key. You have to have the same energy or even better to compete in an away game.”

NBA NEWS & SCORES: Cole Anthony, Paolo Banchero, Jalen Suggs, Orlando Magic, Charlotte Hornets Updates

As the teams look ahead to their next games, the Magic can take pride in a strong showing that underscores their playoff readiness.

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