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McGrady's 43 carry Magic past Nuggets

Tracy McGrady believed there was no stopping him.

"I felt like if I pulled up from halfcourt, I was going to make it," said McGrady, who scored 43, the ninth time this season he has surpassed 40, as the Magic defeated the Denver Nuggets 111-98 on Sunday night.

McGrady dominated the first half, outscoring Denver 37-32. He cooled a little in the third before sitting out the fourth.

"It didn't matter who they were going to put on me, they were at my mercy because I was in a rhythm all night," McGrady said. "And once I get into that rhythm, I feel like nobody can stop me and that was the case tonight."

McGrady headed to the bench for good late in the third quarter after making 13 of 24 shots and 11 of 14 free throws. McGrady hurt Denver with a combination of penetrating drives and long-range jumpers, hitting 6 of 12 3-pointers.

"There was pretty much nothing you could do because we were playing good defense and there were times he was shooting two feet from the 3-point line and making them," Denver's Marcus Camby said. "There was pretty much nothing you could do but tip your hat to the guy for making shots like that."

Magic coach Doc Rivers has watched several opponents this season fail to slow McGrady when he gets on such a roll.

"The worst thing in the world, even for a great defender, is when a great player gets it going," Rivers said. "There's not a lot of defenses that's been made to stop that around the league historically, and he was having one of those nights."

Orlando won for the eighth time in 10 games and beat Denver for the 12th consecutive time.

PACERS: The NBA upheld a flagrant foul call against Ron Artest and suspended the forward for one game for accumulating six flagrant foul points.