ORLANDO, Fla. -- Steve Francis had 20 points and eight
assists and Dwight Howard contributed 14 points to help the Orlando Magic hold off Maccabi Tel Aviv 93-79 Wednesday night.
All-Star Grant Hill left the game in the first quarter with an
abdominal strain and didn't return. The Magic said Hill, who scored
10 points in nine minutes, was day-to-day.
Bo Outlaw had 10 points on 5-for-5 shooting and eight rebounds
for the Magic, who had to give their top players extended minutes
to get the victory over a determined Maccabi team.
Maccabi led by as many as 10 points in the first quarter and
trailed only 51-45 at halftime. The European champions took the
lead again 56-55 with 6:17 left in the third quarter on a 3-pointer
by former University of South Florida star Derrick Sharp.
Francis helped the Magic regain control and Orlando outscored
Maccabi 18-6 the rest of the period to take a 73-62 lead into the
fourth quarter. Maccabi cut the deficit to six with under two
minutes to play, but a short jumper by Howard and two free throws
by Jameer Nelson put away the game.
Anthony Parker scored 20 points and former Clemson star Will
Solomon had 19 for Maccabi, which beat Toronto 105-103 on Sunday.
Steve Francis had 20 points and eight assists and Dwight Howard contributed 14 points to help host Orlando defeat Maccabi Tel Aviv 93-79.