ORLANDO, Fla. — For much of the last week, Orlando coach Stan Van Gundy insisted the Boston Celtics are playing better defense than anyone in the NBA.
His team won’t disagree.
Paul Pierce had 27 points and 10 rebounds, Glen Davis added a season-high 16 points and Boston disrupted everything Orlando wanted offensively, beating the Magic 90-80 in a matchup of two of the league’s elite this season.
Kevin Garnett scored 16 points to help the Celtics (36-9) extend their winning streak to seven games. Ray Allen added 12.
Dwight Howard, who on Thursday became the first player in league history to receive 3 million votes in a season for the All-Star game, was held to a relatively ordinary 11 points and 11 rebounds. He fouled out with 2:30 left.
The Magic (33-9) entered the night with the league’s best record, but saw their run of consecutive victories end at seven.