[7:00 PM] Magic @ 76ers

Who will WIN this matchup?

Orlando Magic (7-12)

@ Philadelphia 76ers (4-14)


It has been one step forward and two steps back for the Orlando Magic most of this season and they may have endured their most distressing loss Thursday in Memphis, coughing up a 14-point lead in the final 6:02. The Magic will try to put the demoralizing setback behind them less than 24 hours later when they visit the struggling Philadelphia 76ers on Friday night. Orlando had snapped a four-game losing streak with an inspiring 12-point victory at San Antonio on Tuesday and was well on its way to another with 28 points from Evan Fournier, but mistakes down the stretch led to a 95-94 loss.

The 76ers attempt to snap a four-game losing streak after Wednesday’s home game against Sacramento was postponed because of condensation on the floor at Wells Fargo Center. Philadelphia hopes to have that problem corrected Friday and may see the debut of former first-round pick Nerlens Noel, who missed the first 18 games with a knee injury. Leading scorer Joel Embiid, who missed the last two seasons with foot injuries, was named the Eastern Conference Rookie of the Month for November after averaging 18.2 points.

Fournier has scored at least 25 points in three of the last five games after draining 11-of-14 from the field — 3-of-5 from 3-point range — and dishing out four assists in Thursday’s loss. Center Nikola Vucevic is beginning to get his game together after a slow start, averaging 17 points and 13.4 rebounds over the last five games while posting seven double-doubles in the past eight contests. Point guard Elfrid Payton had strung three solid games together, making 17-of-30 from the field, before scoring three on 1-of-8 shooting Thursday.

Embiid, who also averages 7.8 rebounds, needs more help if the 76ers are to gain any momentum as veteran forward Ersan Ilyasova (13.0 points) is the only other player scoring more than 11 per game.

The Magic have won the last three meetings, including a 103-101 decision in Philadelphia on Nov. 1, and five of the last six.


StreakSmarts Pick: Philadelphia 76ers

Confidence: 4/10

StreakSmarter Pick