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Orlando at Detroit

Without four sick players, Magic win sixth straight

CBSSports.com wire reports
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AUBURN HILLS, Mich. -- As player after player went down with a nasty stomach bug, all the Orlando Magic could do was laugh.

Then they took the court and won anyway.

Brandon Bass scored a career-high 27 points, and Orlando overcame a stomach virus that sidelined four key players to beat the Detroit Pistons 104-91 Friday night. The Magic were without star center Dwight Howard, and Jameer Nelson, J.J. Redick and Mickael Pietrus were also unavailable.

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"We were just kind of relaxed. I think that was a good thing for us to be in here relaxed and kind of joking around," Bass said. "We were all just kind of making it a little joke -- that, 'Man, we're only going to have seven, eight players."'

It was actually nine players, but Ryan Anderson went down with a sprained right foot after playing less than a minute. Even so, the Magic hardly looked depleted, shooting 60 percent from the field.

In addition to Bass' big game, Vince Carter (25) and Marcin Gortat (14) added season highs in scoring, and Orlando won its sixth straight.

"We're a very deep basketball team that believes in each other," Carter said. "They were shooting at a high level and we wanted to stay close and give ourselves a chance to win."

Gortat and Chris Duhon started in place of Howard and Nelson, but it was the 6-foot-8 Bass who made the biggest contribution. He made his first 11 shots from the field before finally missing from the baseline late in the fourth quarter.

"I always watch Jordan and Kobe and they talk about being in the zone," Bass said with a smile. "I don't know if I was in the zone, but it's definitely a feeling."

Tayshaun Prince scored 30 points for Detroit, which has lost four straight. Even with Howard out, the Pistons managed only three offensive rebounds.

"I guess they just wanted it more than us," Detroit's Charlie Villanueva said. "They were short-handed, they came ready to play. It seemed like it was hard for us to get into a flow out there. Everything seems hard for us."

Orlando trailed 55-54 at halftime and was having trouble stopping Detroit without Howard's intimidating presence inside, but the Magic made up for their defensive struggles with impressive shooting. Quentin Richardson made two 3-pointers and Rashard Lewis added another as part of a 14-1 run in the third quarter that put Orlando ahead 70-60.

Prince responded with six straight points of his own, and the Pistons cut the deficit to one late in the period, but Bass drove along the baseline for a dunk to stop the Detroit run. A 3-pointer by Richardson early in the fourth made it 81-73, and a fast-break layup by Carter put the Magic ahead 97-84.

The Magic ended up holding an opponent under 100 points for the 15th time in 19 games this season.

"My point to them during the game and at halftime was a lot of teams only play eight guys in their rotation," Orlando coach Stan Van Gundy said. "The depth of our roster and the fact that everybody on our roster can play shows itself tonight."

Carter scored 11 of his team's first 13 points and finished the first half with 18, and Bass scored 20 in the half, hurting Detroit both inside and from the perimeter. Bass made all eight of his field goal attempts and all four of his free throws in the first two quarters.

Howard and Pietrus are also expected to miss Saturday night's game at Milwaukee.

Notes

Detroit lost at Orlando 90-79 Tuesday night. ... The Magic shot 61 percent in the first half, and the Pistons shot 57 percent. ... The Magic (15-4) kept pace with Boston for the Eastern Conference's best record. ... Bass' previous career high was 21 points against Golden State on March 30, 2008.

Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
 
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Brandon Bass takes a shot against Austin Daye on his way to scoring a career-high 27 points as the Magic beat the Pistons. (AP)
Brandon Bass takes a shot against Austin Daye on his way to scoring a career-high 27 points as the Magic beat the Pistons. (AP)

Scoreboard
Orlando (15-4) «24302426104
Detroit (6-14)2629181891
ORL:B. Bass 27 Pts
ORL:M. Gortat 11 Reb
ORL:V. Carter 9 Ast
DET:T. Prince 30 Pts
DET:B. Gordon 9 Reb
DET:R. Stuckey 7 Ast
Players of the Game
DetroitOrlando

Tayshaun Prince

Vince Carter
PtsRebsAstPtsRebsAst
30352549
Orlando
V. Carter, SG4110-153-449425
R. Lewis, PF366-141-242115
C. Duhon, PG333-60-02316
M. Gortat, PF327-90-0112414
Q. Richardson, SG315-122-271215
B. Bass, PF3211-125-732127
J. Williams, PG170-20-01420
M. Allen, PF171-10-03122
M. Pietrus, SGDid Not Play
D. Howard, CDid Not Play
J. Nelson, PGDid Not Play
J. Redick, SGDid Not Play
R. Anderson, PFDid Not Play
D. Orton, CDid Not Play
Totals 43-7211-15352417104
 59.7%73.3% 
Detroit
T. Prince, SF4011-156-735330
R. Stuckey, PG353-95-537311
J. Maxiell, PF213-30-00006
B. Wallace, C181-22-41104
R. Hamilton, SG183-91-213210
B. Gordon, SG302-110-09415
C. Villanueva, PF306-110-130515
G. Monroe, C273-60-02426
T. McGrady, SG152-30-00004
A. Daye, SF50-10-00020
C. Wilcox, CDid Not Play
W. Bynum, PGDid Not Play
J. Jerebko, SFDid Not Play
D. Summers, SFDid Not Play
T. White, SGDid Not Play
Totals 34-7014-1922241891
 48.6%73.7% 
Other Games
Port 79 Final
Wash 83
OKC 99 Final
Tor 111
NJ 84 Final
Char 91
Phi 88 Final
Atl 93
Chi 92 Final
Bos 104
NY 100 Final
NO 92
Hou 127 Final
Mem 111
Min 101 Final
SA 107
LAC 104 Final
Den 109
Ind 97 Final
Pho 105
Sac 80 Final
LAL 113
Dal 93 Final
Utah 81