Josh Smith insisted that the constant swirl of trade rumors was not a distraction. Monday night he proved that by finishing with 26 points 13 rebounds and six assists and helped lead the Atlanta Hawks to a 105-101 win over the Dallas Mavericks.
Smith hit a three to put Atlanta up 99-94 with 1:29 remaining which was his fourth made bucket from downtown in five attempts. Dallas cut the lead to one point after four straight points from Dirk Nowitzki. Smith then calmly converted two free throws to put the Hawks back up three with just 22 seconds remaining. The Mavericks turned the ball over on the ensuing possession and four free throws from Jeff Teague and Kyle Korver helped seal the victory.
The Hawks hit 52 percent of their shots from the field and won the rebounding battle 48-37. They probably walk away with a much more comfortable win if not for 18 turnovers of which seven came in the fourth quarter.
Five different Hawks including Smith scored in double figures. Al Horford also recorded a double-double finishing with 21 points and 10 rebounds. Jeff Teague kept the Hawks in front early and finished with 20 points and nine assists. Devin Harris moved back into the starting lineup and came up with 15 points and five assists and a timely steal late that helped preserve the victory. Kyle Korver overcame an ankle injury and chipped in 10 points off the bench.
Nowitzki led Dallas with 24 points and seven rebounds. O.J. Mayo added 19 while Darren Collison finished with 14 points and 10 assists. Noted Hawks killer Vince Carter was limited to 13 points off the bench.
Atlanta improves to 28-22 on the season and improves to 11-13 on the road. The Hawks will head into the All-Star break following Wednesday's game in Orlando.