NBA Game Summary - Atlanta at Washington
(Monday, March 17th)
Final Score: Atlanta 105, Washington 96
Washington, DC (Sports Network) - Mike Bibby scored 23 points, including 5- of-6 from three-point land, to lead the Atlanta Hawks in a 105-96 victory over the Washington Wizards at Verizon Center.
Joe Johnson poured in 18 points and doled out 10 assists for the Hawks, who pulled 1/2 game ahead of the idle New Jersey Nets for the eighth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference. Josh Smith totaled 17 points and eight boards, and Josh Childress gave 16 points. Al Horford contributed 12 points and 15 boards in victory.
"I think we are getting a feel for how it's going to be or how it will be if we make the playoffs," Johnson said. "The intensity in the playoffs is like no other. It is hard to tell them about it because you really have to experience it."
Antawn Jamison chipped in 25 points and nine rebounds for the Wizards, who are a 1/2 game ahead of Philadelphia for the sixth seed in the Eastern Conference. Brendan Haywood tallied 16 points and nine boards, as Roger Mason and DeShawn Stevenson ended with 14 and 13, respectively. Caron Butler had 12 points, eight assists and seven rebounds in defeat.
"He did a good job," Wizards head coach Eddie Jordan said of Haywood. "There were some stretches where he was really phenomenal. He gave us something at both ends. He was taking advantage of some opportunities in the first half."
A Butler put-back layup and a pair from the charity stripe brought Washington within four, 96-92, with 4:40 left in regulation.
Four points is as close as the Wizards got, and the Hawks soared to victory.
Nick Young's reverse layup as time expired cut the Wizards' deficit to 29-24 heading into the second quarter.
Washington fought back and closed the gap to 54-53 at the break.
A 9-2 run put the Hawks on top 65-59 with a little over 8 1/2 minutes left in the third. Childress closed out the scoring on back-to-back buckets.
The Hawks led by six until a Stevenson three and a Jamison jumper brought the Wizards within one, 74-73.
The clubs traded baskets until a 6-0 run from Atlanta put the Hawks ahead 84-77 heading into the final 12 minutes of play. Zaza Pachulia sparked the run with a layup, Bibby kept it alive with a three and West closed it out with a free throw.
A Childress three-ball made it a 10-point affair about two minutes into the fourth.
Atlanta outrebounded Washington 40-34...The Hawks shot 53.3 percent from behind the arc, as the Wiz only hit 35.3 from downtown...The Wizards had won three straight and were unbeaten in their last three home games coming into Monday's duel...The Wizards still lead the all-time series, 132-127.
03/17 22:48:43 ET