Subs Anthony, Bol key Magic’s win over West-leading Nuggets

Feb 9, 2023, 4:40 AM | Updated: 7:43 pm

Orlando Magic guard Cole Anthony (50) drives around Denver Nuggets center Nikola Jokic (15) during ...

Orlando Magic guard Cole Anthony (50) drives around Denver Nuggets center Nikola Jokic (15) during the second half of an NBA basketball game Thursday, Feb. 9, 2023, in Orlando, Fla. (AP Photo/John Raoux)

(AP Photo/John Raoux)

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — Reserves Cole Anthony and Bol Bol each scored 17 points to lead the Orlando Magic to a 115-104 win over the Western Conference-leading Denver Nuggets on Thursday night.

Wendell Carter Jr. led seven Magic scorers in double figures with 19 points, and Orlando’s bench outscored the Nuggets’ reserves 56-10.

“This second group is starting to really figure it out,” said Cole, who had seven rebounds and seven assists. “As a unit we’re just really locking in on that defensive end and trying to let our defense spark our offense.”

Aaron Gordon had a season-high 37 points and 14 rebounds to lead the Nuggets. Nikola Jokic had 29 points, 11 rebounds and six assists, and combined with Gordon to score all 29 of Denver’s points in the third quarter.

But after a shaky start, the Magic, who stand 13th in the Eastern Conference at 23-33, had their way.

“Our guys know and get that we can play with anybody in the league, and that’s what we’re going to continue to prove,” Magic coach Jamahn Mosley said. “That’s how we’re going to continue to play on a nightly basis.”

After missing their first five shots and falling behind 12-0, the Magic shot 63% (27 for 43) for the rest of the first half. They led by 16 points before Gordon and Jokic helped Denver cut its deficit to 10 points — 65-55 — halftime.

“The message was simple at halftime — we’re not playing hard enough, we’re not playing physical enough,” said Denver coach Michael Malone. “They’re outworking us, they’re diving on the floor for loose balls and we’re bending over, trying to pick them up.”

Gordon (17 points) and Jokic (12) handled all the scoring for the Nuggets in the third quarter, and a 3-pointer by Gordon pulled them to within three late in the period.

But Gordon and Jokic spent the first 3:34 of the final period on the bench, and Anthony and Bol led a rally that pushed Orlando’s lead back to 107-88 with 6:05 remaining.

“I didn’t do the job tonight,” said Ish Smith, who went scoreless in 14-plus minutes off the Denver bench. “When they are rolling and getting 50/50 balls, getting second shots, and playing with a lot of energy, you have to match their energy, and we didn’t do the job.”

Bol scored 12 straight points before leaving the game with 4:36 remaining. Anthony finished with 17 points, seven rebounds and seven assists.

“I think Cole was fantastic tonight,” said Mosley. “He did such a great job or us being able to push the pace … a big part is him just being himself, being aggressive early, attacking, and being able to break the defense down.”


Nuggets: G Jamal Murray missed a third game with right knee inflammation, and coach Michael Malone indicated it is unlikely Murray will play again until after the All-Star break. … F Zeke Nnaji missed a second game with a strained right shoulder. . . . Jokic had seven of Denver’s 16 turnovers. . . . After scoring 49 points in the first quarter of a 146-112 wn Tuesday night, the Nuggets scored 49 in the second half Thursday.

Magic: G Jalen Suggs started his first game since Nov. 25, replacing Gary Harris (groin) in the starting lineup. … The Magic shot 9 for 27 from 3-point range and are 23 for 75 (31%) over the last three games, including two wins.


Nuggets: At Charlotte on Saturday.

Magic: Host Miami Heat on Saturday.


AP NBA: https://apnews.com/hub/nba and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


Associated Press

Ex-Packer Guion gets 1 year for domestic violence assault

GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) — Former Green Bay Packers defensive tackle Letroy Guion was sentenced to one year in jail after pleading no contest in a domestic violence assault at his home last fall. Brown County Circuit Court Judge Thomas Walsh also ordered Guion on Tuesday to serve three years’ probation and complete a domestic […]

1 year ago

Joe Jarzynka...

Associated Press

Durant eager for Suns debut vs. Hornets after knee injury

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Kevin Durant has been through quite a bit during his 15-year NBA career — but joining a new team midway through the season is a new one for the 13-time All-Star. The 34-year-old Durant doesn’t seem all that worried. Durant makes his highly anticipated Phoenix Suns debut on Wednesday night against […]

1 year ago

FILE - Miami Dolphins head coach Brian Flores stands on the sideline during the second half of an N...

Associated Press

Judge: NFL coach can press discrimination claims in court

NEW YORK (AP) — NFL Coach Brian Flores can pursue some of his discrimination claims against the league and its teams in court rather than through arbitration, a judge ruled Wednesday. The written decision by Judge Valerie Caproni in Manhattan was issued months after lawyers for the league tried to get the lawsuit moved to […]

1 year ago

Chicago Blackhawks goaltender Alex Stalock cools off in the first period during an NHL hockey game ...

Associated Press

Kane trade reinforces hard reality of Blackhawks rebuild

CHICAGO (AP) — After days of speculation, the harsh reality of the Chicago Blackhawks’ situation was reinforced by one move in a flurry of transactions ahead of the NHL trade deadline. Showtime is over, at least in Chicago, and a seemingly bright future is, well, way off in the distance. The reverberations of Chicago’s decision […]

1 year ago

FILE -  Yves Jean-Bart, president of the Haitian Football Federation, wearing a protective face mas...

Associated Press

Disgraced ex-Haitian soccer president announces he’s back

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti (AP) — Haiti’s former soccer federation president whose lifetime ban from sport over sexual abuse allegations was overturned last month announced Wednesday that he is reclaiming his position. Yves Jean-Bart’s defiant announcement could lead to a standoff with FIFA, which already has appointed an emergency management committee to lead the Haitian Football Association […]

1 year ago

FILE - Green Bay Packers' Aaron Rodgers walks off the field after an NFL football game against the ...

Associated Press

Rodgers says decision on future will come ‘soon enough’

GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) — Aaron Rodgers says he will make a decision on his future “soon enough” as the four-time MVP quarterback ponders whether to play next season and if his future remains with the Green Bay Packers. Rodgers, 39, discussed his future while speaking on an episode of the “Aubrey Marcus Podcast” that […]

1 year ago

Subs Anthony, Bol key Magic’s win over West-leading Nuggets