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Hawks End Magic's Home Glory


Magic coach Chuck Daly said Monday night's 114-110 loss to the Hawks serves as a reminder at how tough life is at the top.

The Magic (14-5) entered the game leading the Atlantic Division and faced a Hawks team it defeated twice this season. Orlando also had enjoyed success at home, winning 10 consecutive games.

None of it mattered, says Daly, because Orlando forgot about doing the "little things."

Orlando was outrebounded a 50-34. The Magic also committed 17 turnovers and 21 fouls. Atlanta took advantage of the fouls, going 23-for-33 from the free throw line.

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  • "When you give up 114 points, you're going to have a hard time winning any night," Daly said. "When you wear the target on your back, you have to know this is what you're going to face on a given night. There are no nights off if we want to continue to win at home."

    Atlanta's Alan Henderson, who finished with 19 points and 12 rebounds, said the gap between the Hawks (9-8) and Magic is closer than it might appear -- home or away.

    "If you look back at the two games we lost to them, we should have won both," Henderson said. "Our season has been off to a funny start. We have lost some games down the stretch that we shouldn't have."

    The Hawks almost did it again Monday. But Mookie Blaylock assured Atlanta would hang on with a key steal of an inbounds pass with 5.4 seconds remaining.

    Nick Anderson had hit consecutive 3-pointers to pull Orlando to 111-110 with 15.seconds remaining.

    The magic fouled Blaylock after Anderson's second 3-pointer, but he missed both free throws. Atlanta controlled the rebound after the second miss and Steve Smith was fouled. He made both shots to put the Hawks ahead 113-110 with nine seconds remaining.

    Blaylock then stepped in front of an inbounds pass from Horace Grant, was fouled and made one of two free throws for the final margin.

    Hawks coach Lenny Wilkens said the final seconds were not as comfortable as he would have liked.

    "When you get to the line, you have to make free throws," Wilkens said. "We work on free throws all the time, and when it's a crucial time of the game, you have to step up and make it. At least (Blaylock) got the rebound back and we were fortunate to knock the rest (of the free throws) down."

    Smith led Atlanta with 24 points and Dikembe Mutombo added 18 points and 17 rebounds.

    Anderson led all scorers with 34 points on 11-for-17 shooting. Six Magic players scored in double figures.

    Orlando's Dominique Wilkinsgot his first start, replacing forward Bo Outlaw, who injured his leg Saturday. Outlaw had played in 199 consecutive games.

    Wilkins, 39, last played in the NBA in 1996-97, when he averaged 18.2 points for San Antonio. Wilkins, the NBA's eighth career scoring leader, was signed by Orlando as a free agent on Feb. 5. He finished the game with 15 points on 7 of 10 shooting.

    Wilkins gave the Magic an early boost when he scored nine points, including a 3-pointer, in the first quarter. He also had three assists.

    Penny Hardaway put Orlando ahead in the second quarter with a 3-pointer at 1:48. Orlando led 60-57 at the half, but Mutombo scored 10 third-quarter points to put the Hawks up 89-81 heading into the final quarter.

    Notes

    • The Magic signed 6-4 guard Kevin Ollie to a 10-day contract. Ollie played in 19 games for Orlando and 16 for Dallas last year. He played in seven games for Sacramento this year.
    • The Magic also placed guard Miles Simon (patella tendinitis) on the injured list.
    • The teams combined for 224 points, 87 more than when they met on March 1, a 70-67 Orlando victory.

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