By Can Erozden
ANKARA (AA) – The Boston Celtics hammered the Orlando Magic 132-96 in NBA action late Wednesday to rise to the number six spot in the Eastern Conference standings.
For the Celtics, Jayson Tatum and Kemba Walker combined for 59 points against the Magic. Tatum scored 27 points and Walker racked up 32 at Orlando's Amway Center.
The Celtics' French shooting guard Evan Fournier scored 18 points against the Magic, his home for six years until just this March.
Boston were lethal beyond the three-point line, hitting 21 three-pointers against Orlando.
Magic duo Dwayne Bacon and Moritz Wagner scored 20 points each. Orlando center Mo Bamba tallied 19 points and got 15 rebounds.
The best six franchises in the East and West will qualify for the 2021 NBA playoffs.
Once the regular season ends, the teams seeded 7-10 in these conferences will have a play-in tournament.
The Celtics’ 35-31 win/loss record propelled them to the top 6, but they are not alone in the fight.
Like Boston, the East No. 7, the Miami Heat, won 35 games but lost 31.
The Magic (21-45) have already been eliminated from the playoff race.
The 2020-21 regular season will conclude on May 16 to be followed by the play-in tournament.
Orlando Magic – Boston Celtics: 96-132
Cleveland Cavaliers – Portland Trail Blazers: 105-141
Atlanta Hawks – Phoenix Suns: 135-103
Indiana Pacers – Sacramento Kings: 93-104
Houston Rockets – Philadelphia 76ers: 115-135
Milwaukee Bucks – Washington Wizards: 135-134
Minnesota Timberwolves – Memphis Grizzlies: 135-139
Denver Nuggets – New York Knicks: 113-97
Utah Jazz – San Antonio Spurs: 126-94
*First team home team