It may be hard to believe, but until yesterday's 102-97 victory over the league-worst Milwaukee Bucks, Atlanta hadn't won consecutive game since their February 1 victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves. During that 40-day stretch, Atlanta has gone just 3-14.
While it may not have been a great game played by Atlanta yesterday, a win is still a win and Atlanta now has a 3.5 game lead over the New York Knicks for the eighth and final Eastern Conference playoff spot. With New York currently riding a five-game winning streak, it's a good think Atlanta has also figured out how to put consecutive wins together again.
"We'll take all the wins we can get right now," Korver said. "We didn't come out with the right energy and focus, at least I didn't. Coach [Mike Budenholzer] got on us at halftime, and we tried to pick it up."
It was a back and forth contest for most of the game, with 12 of the 17 lead changes happening in the fourth quarter. The eventual turning point of the game came with 2:15 left in the fourth quarter. Atlanta was trailing 87-89 when the Bucks made the fatal error of letting Kyle Korver attempt a three-point shot. He made the shot, giving Atlanta a 90-89 lead that they would never surrender after that.
In case Korver's NBA-record setting streak of consecutive games played with a made three-point shot haven't alerted other teams to his downtown ability, he also leads the NBA this season making 48.7 percent of his three point attempts.
Even though Milwaukee is still sporting a 13-52 (.200 winning percentage) record this season, that didn't mean the now 28-35 Hawks took them lightly. "Nobody is bad in the NBA," Jeff Teague said after the game. "Any given night, anybody can beat you.”
Teague led the Hawks in both points scored and assists in the game with 22 and eight, respectively. Unfortunately he also was responsible for seven of the team's 17 turnovers, so there's still room for improvement. The three former Utah Jazz members (Kyle Korver, DeMarre Carroll and Paul Millsap) were the other Hawks starters to score in double figures with 15, 15 and 17 points, respectively. Millsap led the team with eight rebounds, all of them defensive.
Atlanta finally will get some much needed rest at home. Their next game will be this Saturday at Philips Arena against the Denver Nuggets. Tip-off is scheduled for 7:30pm EST.