Hawks 80, Mavericks 75
The Atlanta Hawks recovered from one of their worst defensive
efforts of the season with one of their best.
Joe Johnson scored 31 points and the Hawks limited the Mavericks
to 19 percent from the floor in the fourth quarter as Atlanta ended
a streak of five winless trips to Dallas with an 80-75 victory on
Atlanta had dropped four of its previous six including a 114-107
home loss to New York on Friday night when the Knicks shot 58
percent from the field.
“It was a big bounce back,” Hawks coach Mike Woodson said.
“(Friday) night we definitely had nothing going for us as a
defense. We talked about it over breakfast.”
Josh Smith added 12 points, and Marvin Williams had a
career-high 15 rebounds to help the Hawks hand the Mavericks a
second consecutive defeat for the first time this season.
Johnson had eight points and four rebounds in the fourth
“I thought we showed a lot of guts coming off a tough
back-to-back to come in against a team as good as Dallas and win,”
Dirk Nowitzki had 32 points and nine rebounds, and Jason Terry
added 17 points for the Mavericks, who set a season low for points
for the second straight night.
Atlanta was clinging to a one-point lead early in the fourth
quarter when the Hawks scored eight straight points, capped by
Jamal Crawford’s 16-footer, for a 74-65 advantage with 7:28 to
The Hawks turned up the defense down the stretch, forcing the
Mavericks into eight straight missed field goals until Nowitzki’s
layup with 3:22 left pulled Dallas to 76-73.
Dallas narrowed the gap to 78-75 with 40.4 seconds remaining on
Terry’s two free throws, and the Mavericks had a chance to get
closer after Atlanta’s Mike Bibby missed a 3-pointer with 18
The Mavericks tried to get Nowitzki open for a 3-pointer, but
Nowitzki committed a turnover when he kicked the ball with 9.8
seconds to play.
The Mavericks thought they’d forced a turnover on Atlanta’s next
possession. Al Horford of the Hawks caught an inbounds pass, then
dribbled the ball off his foot. The ball rolled into the backcourt
where Horford regained possession, but referees did not call a
“It appeared on the replay Horford dribbled off his foot and
recovered in the backcourt,” Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle said.
“It was a call missed.”
Johnson’s two free throws with 1.5 seconds left iced the game
for the Hawks.
Dallas was coming off a 98-82 loss at Memphis on Friday night,
shooting a season-worst 35 percent from the floor. The Mavericks
had 16 turnovers and went 25-for-67 from the field against the
““We just couldn’t find any way to get through their
defense,” Terry said. ‘They’re long and athletic. They kept us out
of the paint.”
The Hawks were the fresher of the two teams in the early going,
connecting on 12 of their first 22 field-goal attempts for a 27-19
edge heading into the second period.
Atlanta led by 13 in the second quarter, but the Mavericks
closed with a 13-1 run over the final 7:19 of the first half as
Dallas reduced the deficit to 41-40 at the break.
The Hawks went through a stretch of 10:28 in the second and
third quarters without a field goal, missing 20 straight shots
before a Johnson put-back pulled the Hawks within 48-45.
Johnson scored the final two baskets of the third quarter, the
second with 3.2 seconds left, and Atlanta carried a 64-60 lead into
the final quarter.
NOTES: Dallas won 11 of the previous 12 home meetings with
Atlanta. … Terry, who was drafted 10th overall by Atlanta in 1999
and played five seasons for the Hawks, started for the first time
this season, giving the Mavericks their seventh different starting
five. … Mavericks G Quinton Ross missed his seventh straight game
with tightness in his lower back. … The Hawks went 1-for-6 from
the free throw line and shot 5-for-25 from the floor in the second
quarter. … Atlanta held a 20-4 first-half advantage in points in