Paolo Banchero returns to guide Magic past Jazz

Paolo Banchero scored 29 points in his return from a two-game absence caused by an illness, lifting the Orlando Magic to a 115-107 home win over the Utah Jazz on Thursday night.

Banchero made 10 of 16 shots, grabbed nine rebounds and dished out six assists to help the Magic win for the fifth time in six games. On the down side, he committed a game-high six turnovers.

Orlando’s Jalen Suggs added 15 points, all in the second half, and hit three clutch 3-pointers in the final three minutes. Moritz Wagner contributed 14 points and 10 rebounds, while Franz Wagner added 14 points and six assists.

John Collins, Collin Sexton and Keyonte George each scored 19 points for the struggling Jazz, who have lost seven of eight games. Lauri Markkanen added 18 points, while Collins hauled in a team-high 10 boards.

The game was tied 99-99 with under five minutes remaining, but the Magic went on a 10-0 run in the final minutes. Suggs, who missed both of his first-half field-goal attempts, drained back-to-back 3-pointers to ignite the game-clinching spurt.

Orlando outshot Utah 54.5 percent to 42.5 percent despite the Jazz nailing 16 of 37 attempts (43.2 percent) from 3-point range. The Magic dominated the interior, outscoring the visitors 56-30 in the paint and winning the battle of the boards 45-37.

The Magic scored the final eight points of the first quarter, with Joe Ingles’ 3-pointer putting the hosts up 29-21.

Orlando used another eight-point surge, including two dunks by Moritz Wagner, to build a 13-point lead in the second quarter.

The Jazz went on an 11-0 run, capped by a Markkanen 3-pointer with 13.1 seconds left, to trail just 53-51 at halftime.

Utah went up 65-62 with a 7-0 spurt and held an 82-80 advantage after three quarters.

The teams battled back and forth until Banchero broke a 99-99 tie with a bucket at the 4:22 mark. Suggs made it a four-point lead by hitting a trey with 2:50 left, but the Jazz pulled back within one after three free throws from George. Suggs then helped put the game away with his consecutive 3-pointers.

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