The Atlanta Hawks made a big comeback in the second half but a stagnant fourth quarter proved costly in a 95-91 loss to the New York Knicks.
The Knicks came into the game struggling from the field but caught fire midway through the first quarter and took a 29-25 lead after one. They kept the pressure on in the second as they continued to bomb away from the outside. New York led by as many as 17 in the first half before Atlanta closed with a many run to cut the deficit to 55-45 at the break.
New York came into the game shooting 32 percent from three-point range but went 8-for-19 in the first half. The Hawks, on the other hand, struggled form distance in the first half, finishing just 1-for-11.
The Hawks came out in the third and dug in defensively, outscoring the Knicks 23-10 to take a 68-65 lead. Atlanta pressured the Knicks into a series of long contested jump shots which helped ignite their transition game. Al Horford carried the Hawks in the third scoring 10 of his 23 points in the period.
The fourth quarter started well for the Hawks, who took a six point lead with Kyle Korver's first three of the night with 8:33 remaining in the game. The bucket extended Korver's consecutive games with a made three streak to 81 games. It was all downhill for Atlanta from that point as Andrea Bargnani of all people pulled the Knicks out of their hole. Bargnani's three with 5:49 remaining extended the New York lead to 83-78. He banked home another three two minutes later to extend the lead to nine and pretty much sealing the win for the Knicks.
Jeff Teague was a thorn in the side of New York all evening, finishing with 25 points and eight assists. Horford added 23 points and five rebounds while Cartier Martin chipped in 13 off the bench. Atlanta connected on 46 percent of their field goal attempts but were just 5-for-24 from three-point range in the game.
Anthony led the Knicks with 25 points while going 9-for-25 from the field. Bargnani added 20 points and 11 rebounds while Tim Hardaway Jr. finished with 14 off the bench. J.R. Smith made his first start of the season at shooting guard and finished with 12 points. The Knicks as a team finished 12-for-34 from three-point range.
The loss drops the Hawks to 4-4 on the season while the Knicks improve to 3-4. Atlanta is back in action Friday night when they host the Philadelphia 76ers at Philips Arena.
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