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Magic ride 2nd-half run to 90-74 win over Pistons

Associated Press Modified: November 21, 2012 at 10:16 pm •  Published: November 21, 2012

Point guard Jameer Nelson was a non-factor in Orlando's loss at Atlanta earlier in the week as he recovered from an illness. He showed little effects of that Wednesday, though, posting a balanced 10 points, seven assists and six rebounds.

An exasperated Frank pulled all his starters at one point during the Magic's onslaught and when the reserves couldn't stop it, he subbed for some of them.

Detroit finished the period with eight points, just besting its franchise-low mark of six points in a quarter. For the Magic, it tied a franchise mark for fewest points allowed in a third quarter.

The Magic's lead reached 20 in the opening minutes of the final period as the Pistons never were able to rekindle any semblance of their early offensive flow.

Looking for a better matchup with 6-foot-9 Pistons small forward Tayshaun Prince, Vaughn gave rookie Maurice Harkless his first start career start at that spot. The shift allowed Arron Afflalo to move back to his natural shooting guard spot.

Harkless' speed did give the veteran fits at times in half court, and in turn opened up the court for his teammates on offense as the Pistons had to respect his ability to get to the rim.

It didn't seem like it would be an easy night for Orlando in the early going, though.

The Pistons took a three-point lead into the break, dominating the Magic for the second straight game in the front court.

Detroit scored 32 of its 48 points in the opening 24 minutes in the paint, led by Monroe's 15.

Orlando fell into a 23-13 hole late in the first quarter, before using a 16-6 run to tie it 29.

The spurt, punctuated by a fast-break dunk by Harkless, featured 10 points from the Magic's young contingent of first- and second-year players.

The most active was Nicholson, who finished the half with 10 points to lead all Magic scorers.

With four games at home before going back on the road, the word of the week for the Magic will remain what it's been all season: consistency.

"That's the key for us, we have to become a better transition team," Afflalo said. "And the only way we're going to do that is to start getting stops. That was very welcoming to see for us to put together a defensive effort like that. That kind of allowed us to dictate the game a little bit.

"So hopefully we can carry that over."

Notes: The 74 points were the fewest the Pistons have scored this season. ... Prince briefly left the game late in the first quarter after banging knees with another player. ... The eight points allowed by the Magic in the third quarter was the fewest they've allowed in third quarter since 1999 at New Jersey.