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Thunder journal: Dennis Schroder ties season high in points and assists against Magic

Related coverage: Thunder vs. Magic

Recap: Thunder 120, Magic 114 Five takeaways from the Thunder's win against the Magic 'Throw the ball up. I’m going to go get it.': Nerlens Noel helps Thunder dunk its way past Magic

Dennis Schroder was scoreless in the first quarter, but his offensive outbursts can happen in a flash.

The Thunder’s super sixth man scored 11 points in the second quarter, nine points in the third and 11 points in the fourth to tie his season high of 31 points in the Thunder’s 120-114 win Wednesday night against the Magic.

Schroder, a frontrunner in the Sixth Man of the Year race, drained a crucial 20-foot jumper with 32 seconds left. The shot gave the Thunder a six-point edge.

Schroder shot 13-of-18 (72%) from the floor and 3-of-4 from 3-point range. He tied his season high with nine assists for his most well-rounded game of the season.

“He’s a great competitor,” Thunder coach Billy Donovan told reporters after the game. “I think the thing with him is he plays both sides of the ball. It’s not like he’s just being used as an offensive player … He had 31 tonight, but he’s also guarding.”

Good offense beats good defense

The Magic entered play with the sixth-best defensive rating in the NBA. In 11 January games before Wednesday, even without elite defender Jonathan Issac, the Magic had the second-best defensive rating of the month.

But the Thunder had little trouble finding holes in Orlando’s defense.

OKC shot a season-best 61% from the field. The Thunder only attempted 19 3-pointers, but it made nine of them for a 47% mark.

Reserve center Mike Muscala tied his career high with four 3-pointers on four attempts. He finished with 14 points off the bench.

Dort logs second start

Luguentz Dort’s defense is earning him big minutes with Terrance Ferguson out.

The undrafted rookie logged his second-career start Wednesday night. After playing a leading role in James Harden’s 9-of-29 shooting line Monday night, Dort was the primary defender on Evan Fournier.

Fournier, the Magic’s leading scorer at 19.1 points per game, was limited to 12 points on 5-of-12 shooting. He was 1-of-6 behind the arc.

Lopsided battle on the boards

Steven Adams’ defensive rebounding was missed.

The Magic had 11 offensive rebounds compared to the Thunder’s zero. But 10 of the Magic’s 11 offensive rebounds came in the first half as the Thunder solved the problem in the second half.

Orlando held a 15-2 advantage in second-chance points.

Injury report

Adams was a game-time decision, but a left ankle sprain kept him out.

“He went out there and tested it to see where he was at,” Donovan said after the game.

Adams was injured two minutes into OKC’s game Monday at Houston when Rockets center Clint Capela landed on him. Both took a hard fall after going up for a rebound.

Ferguson was out for personal reasons. It was his third consecutive missed game.

Reserve guard Abdel Nader missed a fifth consecutive game due to a left ankle sprain.

Tip-ins

Shai Gilgeous-Alexander scored 18 points with 12 rebounds for his third straight double double … OKC has won eight of its last nine road games … The Thunder is a season-high seven games above .500.

Related Photos
<strong>Oklahoma City's Chris Paul, right, steals the ball from Orlando's Nikola Vucevic during the second half of Wednesday's game in Orlando. OKC won the game 120-114 and moved a season-best seven games over .500.  [AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack]</strong>

Oklahoma City's Chris Paul, right, steals the ball from Orlando's Nikola Vucevic during the second half of Wednesday's game in Orlando. OKC won the game 120-114 and moved a season-best seven games over .500. [AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack]

<figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-3342dd54c5b3a6cb30d99acbdb05cf55.jpg" alt="Photo - Oklahoma City's Chris Paul, right, steals the ball from Orlando's Nikola Vucevic during the second half of Wednesday's game in Orlando. OKC won the game 120-114 and moved a season-best seven games over .500. [AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack] " title=" Oklahoma City's Chris Paul, right, steals the ball from Orlando's Nikola Vucevic during the second half of Wednesday's game in Orlando. OKC won the game 120-114 and moved a season-best seven games over .500. [AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack] "><figcaption> Oklahoma City's Chris Paul, right, steals the ball from Orlando's Nikola Vucevic during the second half of Wednesday's game in Orlando. OKC won the game 120-114 and moved a season-best seven games over .500. [AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack] </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-fe6bd924322b7a2da1741b2c3ea2f766.jpg" alt="Photo - " title=""><figcaption></figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-438453d10fee30d6ec292fe345fd531b.jpg" alt="Photo - Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA;Oklahoma City Thunder center Nerlens Noel (9) dunks against the Orlando Magic during the first quarter at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]" title="Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA;Oklahoma City Thunder center Nerlens Noel (9) dunks against the Orlando Magic during the first quarter at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]"><figcaption>Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA;Oklahoma City Thunder center Nerlens Noel (9) dunks against the Orlando Magic during the first quarter at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-24e9a34eee9bf49657a2644148489953.jpg" alt="Photo - Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder center Nerlens Noel (9) dunks against the Orlando Magic during the first half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]" title="Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder center Nerlens Noel (9) dunks against the Orlando Magic during the first half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]"><figcaption>Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder center Nerlens Noel (9) dunks against the Orlando Magic during the first half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-f2d0ab7a065aba8d499d04755bac7a90.jpg" alt="Photo - Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (2) drives to the basket against the Orlando Magic during the first half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]" title="Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (2) drives to the basket against the Orlando Magic during the first half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]"><figcaption>Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (2) drives to the basket against the Orlando Magic during the first half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-8834b1696db79ce47b886dca80903488.jpg" alt="Photo - Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder center Nerlens Noel (9) looks on against the Orlando Magic during the first half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]" title="Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder center Nerlens Noel (9) looks on against the Orlando Magic during the first half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]"><figcaption>Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder center Nerlens Noel (9) looks on against the Orlando Magic during the first half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-320397322cbbed67c51a59e77f0c737c.jpg" alt="Photo - Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder guard Chris Paul (3) drives to the basket against the Orlando Magic during the first half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]" title="Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder guard Chris Paul (3) drives to the basket against the Orlando Magic during the first half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]"><figcaption>Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder guard Chris Paul (3) drives to the basket against the Orlando Magic during the first half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-485638e9669e7f3fdfc316176a59982e.jpg" alt="Photo - Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder head coach Billy Donovan looks on against the Orlando Magic during the first half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]" title="Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder head coach Billy Donovan looks on against the Orlando Magic during the first half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]"><figcaption>Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder head coach Billy Donovan looks on against the Orlando Magic during the first half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-a93648a2afd51733c7667db0c870bc28.jpg" alt="Photo - Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; A detail view of Oklahoma City Thunder forward Danilo Gallinari (8) sneakers against the Orlando Magic during the first half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]" title="Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; A detail view of Oklahoma City Thunder forward Danilo Gallinari (8) sneakers against the Orlando Magic during the first half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]"><figcaption>Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; A detail view of Oklahoma City Thunder forward Danilo Gallinari (8) sneakers against the Orlando Magic during the first half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-63d69416e165d992b8fecf9192f0c9de.jpg" alt="Photo - Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Orlando Magic center Nikola Vucevic (9) fouls Oklahoma City Thunder guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (2) during the second half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]" title="Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Orlando Magic center Nikola Vucevic (9) fouls Oklahoma City Thunder guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (2) during the second half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]"><figcaption>Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Orlando Magic center Nikola Vucevic (9) fouls Oklahoma City Thunder guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (2) during the second half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-e59b9e7701f4636c43615d78f565a16f.jpg" alt="Photo - Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder forward Mike Muscala (33) points as he makes a three point basket against the Orlando Magic during the second half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]" title="Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder forward Mike Muscala (33) points as he makes a three point basket against the Orlando Magic during the second half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]"><figcaption>Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder forward Mike Muscala (33) points as he makes a three point basket against the Orlando Magic during the second half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-ce2d38cba6dbd6bb775c4d6c7c155cf8.jpg" alt="Photo - Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder guard Dennis Schroder (17) drives to the basket as Orlando Magic guard Michael Carter-Williams (7) defends during the second half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]" title="Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder guard Dennis Schroder (17) drives to the basket as Orlando Magic guard Michael Carter-Williams (7) defends during the second half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]"><figcaption>Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder guard Dennis Schroder (17) drives to the basket as Orlando Magic guard Michael Carter-Williams (7) defends during the second half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-b26be2f100598f7e90f24621985d2978.jpg" alt="Photo - Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder forward Mike Muscala (33) and Orlando Magic guard Terrence Ross (8) fight to control the ball during the second half at Amway Center. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports" title="Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder forward Mike Muscala (33) and Orlando Magic guard Terrence Ross (8) fight to control the ball during the second half at Amway Center. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports"><figcaption>Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder forward Mike Muscala (33) and Orlando Magic guard Terrence Ross (8) fight to control the ball during the second half at Amway Center. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-eb507531a8914610afae8ce3053dc895.jpg" alt="Photo - Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder head coach Billy Donovan talks with guard Dennis Schroder (17) and guard Chris Paul (3) against the Orlando Magic during the second half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]" title="Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder head coach Billy Donovan talks with guard Dennis Schroder (17) and guard Chris Paul (3) against the Orlando Magic during the second half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]"><figcaption>Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder head coach Billy Donovan talks with guard Dennis Schroder (17) and guard Chris Paul (3) against the Orlando Magic during the second half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-48d5aeb13313a3eefd61a1573bd2fb1b.jpg" alt="Photo - Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Orlando Magic guard Markelle Fultz (20) shoots a layup against the Oklahoma City Thunder during the second half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]" title="Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Orlando Magic guard Markelle Fultz (20) shoots a layup against the Oklahoma City Thunder during the second half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]"><figcaption>Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Orlando Magic guard Markelle Fultz (20) shoots a layup against the Oklahoma City Thunder during the second half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-71ac79d0f19204f279f6f7440528b001.jpg" alt="Photo - Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Orlando Magic center Nikola Vucevic (9) drives to the basket as Oklahoma City Thunder forward Mike Muscala (33) defends during the second half at Amway Center. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports" title="Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Orlando Magic center Nikola Vucevic (9) drives to the basket as Oklahoma City Thunder forward Mike Muscala (33) defends during the second half at Amway Center. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports"><figcaption>Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Orlando Magic center Nikola Vucevic (9) drives to the basket as Oklahoma City Thunder forward Mike Muscala (33) defends during the second half at Amway Center. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-575746373e265514a2efd69f177f1904.jpg" alt="Photo - Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder head coach Billy Donovan reacts against the Orlando Magic during the second half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]" title="Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder head coach Billy Donovan reacts against the Orlando Magic during the second half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]"><figcaption>Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder head coach Billy Donovan reacts against the Orlando Magic during the second half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-96ae4328b0d2e1d6c11f5f79c5bc8134.jpg" alt="Photo - Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder head coach Billy Donovan talks with guard Dennis Schroder (17) against the Orlando Magic during the second half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]" title="Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder head coach Billy Donovan talks with guard Dennis Schroder (17) against the Orlando Magic during the second half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]"><figcaption>Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder head coach Billy Donovan talks with guard Dennis Schroder (17) against the Orlando Magic during the second half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-182773b1b3f77b47b3d4d2b02949405a.jpg" alt="Photo - Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder guard Chris Paul (3) steals the ball from Orlando Magic center Nikola Vucevic (9) during the second half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]" title="Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder guard Chris Paul (3) steals the ball from Orlando Magic center Nikola Vucevic (9) during the second half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]"><figcaption>Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder guard Chris Paul (3) steals the ball from Orlando Magic center Nikola Vucevic (9) during the second half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-c4771f90cf58630cf3cd295cbddbbf30.jpg" alt="Photo - Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder guard Dennis Schroder (17) is congratulated by guard Chris Paul (3) and center Nerlens Noel (9) against the Orlando Magic during the second half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]" title="Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder guard Dennis Schroder (17) is congratulated by guard Chris Paul (3) and center Nerlens Noel (9) against the Orlando Magic during the second half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]"><figcaption>Jan 22, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder guard Dennis Schroder (17) is congratulated by guard Chris Paul (3) and center Nerlens Noel (9) against the Orlando Magic during the second half at Amway Center. [Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports]</figcaption></figure>
Joe Mussatto

Joe Mussatto joined The Oklahoman in August 2018 to cover OU football, men’s basketball and softball. He previously covered University of Kentucky football and basketball for SEC Country. Mussatto is from Oklahoma City and lives in Norman. Read more ›

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