Regular Season Series (Game 1 of 1)

Series starts 10/26

Game 1: Thursday, October 26th

Rockets 90

(5-2, 2-1 away)

Magic 94

(6-2, 2-2 home)

    7:00 PM ET, October 26, 2006

    Amway Arena, Orlando, FL

    1 2 3 4 T
    HOU 24 25 18 2390
    ORL 26 20 26 2294

    Magic defeat Rockets, Yao leaves with sprained ankle

    ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) -- Dwight Howard had 22 points and 15 rebounds and Carlos Arroyo scored 16 points, leading the Orlando Magic to a 94-90 win over the Houston Rockets in the teams' final preseason game Thursday night.

    Tracy McGrady led the Rockets with 18 points, but played sparingly in the third quarter and sat out the fourth. Yao Ming had 13 points and 4 rebounds before leaving in the second quarter with a sprained ankle.

    The All-Star said the injury was minor, and he sat only as a precaution.

    "It's not a big problem," Yao said. "If we had practice tomorrow I could do it."

    Arroyo sealed the win with a three-point play in the game's final 2 minutes.

    Orlando and Houston both finished the preseason 6-2. The loss snapped the Rockets' five-game winning streak.

    John Lucas III scored 12 points for Houston, all in the fourth quarter. Shane Battier had 11 points and 6 rebounds, and Steve Novak scored 10 points for the Rockets.

    Hedo Turkoglu was Orlando's only player besides Howard and Arroyo to crack double digits, netting 10 points on 5-of-12 shooting.

    Yao had 11 points during a 15-4 second-quarter run that helped Houston to a 49-46 halftime lead. The Rockets missed his inside presence in the second half.

    Houston went 3-of-4 from 3-point range in the third quarter's opening minutes, but then suddenly went cold. The Rockets were scoreless for nearly 8 minutes during a 21-0 Magic run that gave Orlando an eight-point lead with 1:06 left in the third quarter.

    Magic rookie J.J. Redick, who sat out most of the preseason with an injured foot, played in just his second game. He ended the exhibition season with no points on 0-of-3 shooting.

    Darko Milicic returned for the Magic after missing two games with a bruised lower back. He picked up three fouls in 6 minutes defending Yao, and a technical for knocking a ball on the floor that bounced into the stands in the second quarter. Milicic finished with four points and five rebounds.

    Houston was 13-of-33 from 3-point range, compared with 1-of-13 for Orlando.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press