Credit Orlando. After seeing a 7-point lead disintegrate in the final two-and-a-half minutes of regulation against the Celtics last night, the Magic (helped in part by very poor Boston execution at the finish of the 48th minute) survived to play for at least one more day, 96-92 in overtime, shaving Boston's series lead to 3-1.
The series switches back to Orlando for Game Five tomorrow (Wednesday) night.
Leading 85-78 late in the game, Orlando watched Boston outscore them eight to one down the stretch to send it to overtime. It might never have made it that far had the Celtics been able to execute on their final possession of regulation. Tie game, 20 seconds left, play for the last shot, disciplined, veteran team with the ball, at home, not looking good for the guys in the blue uni's. But the Celtics, instead of calling time, ran a play that was supposed to end up as a pick-and-roll between Paul Pierce and Ray Allen, and the ball turned to butter, Pierce lost his grip on it, and the Magic were still alive.
Jameer Nelson buried two threes in overtime to open the scoring, and after Boston cut it to two, Dwight Howard, who finished with 32, ended the scoring with a deuce off of an offensive rebound.
A lot of talk after this one of Boston not being in sync, of not playing 'as a team' as they had the first three games, of maybe hearing the crowd chanting 'beat L.A.' and letting it get into their heads. Time will tell if the Celtics can shake this off and win again on the road, to close the series out and head to the NBA Finals.
Good job Orlando, for staying alive, with a little help from your foes.