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Slumping Magic Falls to Bobcats

Orlando Drops 9th of 10 Games: Bobcats 108, Magic 94

Associated Press
Friday, March 25, 2005; Page D01

ORLANDO, March 24 -- The Orlando Magic's slide keeps getting worse.

Gerald Wallace scored 22 points and rookie Emeka Okafor registered his 36th double-double of the season with 23 points and 10 rebounds, leading the Charlotte Bobcats to a 108-94 win over Orlando on Thursday as the Magic lost for the ninth time in 10 games.

Orlando's Dwight Howard, left, tries to get around Charlotte's Emeka Okafor (23 points, 10 rebounds. (Peter Cosgrove -- AP)

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The expansion Bobcats beat the Magic for the second time in four days and won on the road for just the third time.

Magic rookies Dwight Howard and Jameer Nelson also registered double-doubles, but Orlando faltered in the middle of the fourth quarter. Howard had 15 points and 14 rebounds, while Nelson had 18 points and a season-high 13 assists. Grant Hill led the Magic with 28 points.

Brevin Knight had 15 points, 15 assists and eight steals, and Primoz Brezec added 20 points for Charlotte, which snapped an 11-game road losing streak.

The Bobcats led, 83-82, with just over eight minutes left before going on a 12-2 run that decided the game. Jason Hart started the run with a three-pointer and Okafor finished it with a free throw to give the Bobcats a 95-84 lead with 3 minutes 37 seconds left.

Orlando, which began the night one game behind Philadelphia for eighth place in the Eastern Conference, dropped another half-game behind the 76ers.

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