Pistons Vs. Hawks: Mike Bibby, Josh Smith Spur Atlanta To 94-79 Win Over Detroit

The Atlanta Hawks open up a seven-game road trip with a tilt against the Detroit Pistons on Monday. Can Atlanta forget about its home woes and defeat the Pistons in a place where they've won just one of their last 11 games?

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Pistons Vs. Hawks: Mike Bibby, Josh Smith Spur Atlanta To 94-79 Win Over Detroit

Josh Smith's chip on his shoulder helped the Atlanta Hawks to a much-needed rare win against the Detroit Pistons at the Palace of Auburn Hills.

Smith had 27 points and 14 boards and Mike Bibby added 17 points, seven assists and six rebounds to lead the Hawks to a 94-79 win over the Pistons on Monday night in suburban Detroit.

Marvin Williams had 15 points and eight rebounds off of the bench for Atlanta, which erased a 15-point second quarter deficit en route to notching just their second win in their last 11 games on the Pistons' home court.

"It feels good," Smith told the team's TV broadcast afterward. "It feels even better because we came into this building 0-5. We lost our last five games here."

The win couldn't have come at a better time for Atlanta, which dropped its last two games at the Highlight Factory in rather embarrassing fashion. The Hawks blew a 22 point lead in a 88-86 setback against the Charlotte Bobcats on Saturday on top of a 117-83 setback to the Philadelphia 76ers last Tuesday.

Luckily for Atlanta, they have a forward who wants to show the rest of the league that he deserves to be on the All-Star team that is backing up his words with his game.

"I'm making my point to prove my point to every Eastern Conference coach that I deserve to be in the All-Star Game," a candid Smith admitted.

The Hawks could also thank a reemergence of Bibby for the win in this one.

Detroit couldn't miss from behind the 3-point line early on in this one, connecting on six straight to start the game en route to building a a 41-26 lead with 7:28 remaining in the second with a reverse layup by Charlie Villanueva.

But Bibby and the rest of the Hawks found their three-point stroke as Atlanta chipped away at the lead, eventually taking a 53-51 edge on a bucket by Smith to end the half. Bibby, Atlanta's starting point guard, had 10 of his 17 points in the comeback.

Atlanta got some separation with an 8-0 run to start the third quarter and never looked back.

"I thought we did a great job," Hawks coach Larry Drew told reporters after the game. "We went through a bad stretch in the second quarter, but we regained our composure. That's the sign of a good team, especially on the road.

"(In the) second half, we defensively turned it up. ... It's a good win for us. It's a total team effort. We've been a successful road team and we need to continue."

Tracy McGrady had 14 points and Villaneuva added 13 off the bench for the Pistons, who have dropped four straight on their home court.


Pistons Vs. Hawks: Atlanta Gets Some Separation, Leads 74-68 Through Three

The Detroit Pistons had trouble putting the basketball into the net the first half of the third quarter. As a result, the Atlanta Hawks opened up a bit of a lead.

Mike Bibby is having one of his best games in recent memory, posting 15 points, six assists and five rebounds as the Hawks soared to a 74-68 lead through three quarters.

Atlanta scored the first eight points of the third to take a 61-51 lead before Detroit finally broke through on Tracy McGrady's 3-pointer with 6:26 remaining in the frame. The Hawks pretty much have maintained a 5-to-11 point edge thereafter.

Both teams are having success from beyond the arc in this one. Detroit is shooting 72-percent (10-for-14) through the first three frames, while Atlanta has connected on 7-of-13 from the 3-point line.

McGrady has 14 points and Rodney Stuckey has 12 for the Pistons, who look to defeat Atlanta for the 11th time in 12 games at the Palace of Auburn Hills.


Pistons Vs. Hawks: Mike Bibby Rescues Atlanta From Down 15, Hawks Take 53-51 Lead Into Half

As Mike Bibby said during the halftime TV interview, this one was about the Atlanta Hawks finally getting defensive stops. Of course, it also helps when you're knocking down just about every shot that you take.

Bibby had 10 points, three rebounds and four assists as the Hawks overcame a 15 point deficit to take a 53-51 lead into the third quarter. Joe Johnson and Josh Smith posted 11 points each for Atlanta, which shot a blistering 68-percent (21-for-31) from the field in the frame.

It seemed like once Atlanta withstood a barrage of Detroit 3-pointers, good defense lead to easy transition buckets and the Hawks were right back in the game.Detroit was 6-for-6 from behind the arc Seconds as Charlie Villanueva gave the Pistons a 41-26 lead with 7:28 remaining in the second with a reverse layup. But Atlanta's basketball team went to work. Folks like Bibby and Johnson were draining 3-pointers and the team continued sharing the basketball.

Atlanta dished assists on 15 of their 21 first half buckets as they chipped away at the lead. The Hawks finally got onto the right side of the scoresheet when Josh Smith banked in a shot with 33.8 seconds left in the half.

Villanueva posted a game-high 11 points and Rodney Stuckey, Tracy McGrady and Austin Daye had nine each for the Pistons, who have connected on 8-of-10 shots from behind the 3-point line.


Pistons Vs. Hawks: Atlanta Looks Better, But Still Trails Detroit 27-20 Through One Quarter

The Atlanta Hawks look a little bit better against the struggling Detroit Pistons than they did in their past two ballgames. Nevertheless, this one is still too close for comfort.

The good news is that the Hawks are attacking the paint in this one. The bad news is that Detroit scored 18 of the last 23 points in the frame to take a 27-20 lead into the second quarter. The difference in scoring comes down to two things: 1) The Hawks are not as active as they should be on the Pistons side of the floor and 2) Atlanta has turned over the basketball and Detroit hasn't.

Atlanta actually has the edge in field goal percentage to start the game. They shot 62-percent (8-for-13) in the first frame while Detroit is firing at a 46-percent (10-for-22 clip). But the Pistons have been able to go inside and clean the glass, posting six offensive rebounds in the frame. The Hawks have seven total rebounds. Atlanta also leads a battle you never want to lead -- the battle of turnovers -- by a 5-0 margin.

Tracy McGrady has a game-high nine points while Rodney Stuckey has seven for Detroit, which has won 10 of its last 11 against Atlanta on its home court.

Joe Johnson gave Hawks fans one of their lone bright spots in this one, dishing an assist to Al Hoford early in the first to pass Dominique Wilkins for fifth place on the team's all-time assists list.

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