The big first half for the Atlanta Hawks did not continue into the third quarter as the Orlando Magic furiously made a comeback in the third quarter to outscore the Hawks by 14 points to make the game 58-55 heading into the fourth quarter. The Hawks ultimately held of the Magic's run to win 83-78 and it snapped the Hawks three-game losing streak. The win also kept the Hawks within 1.5 games of the Magic for second place in the Southeast Division.
In the second half the Hawks were not hitting their shots and went from shooting near 50 percent in the first half to shooting 39 percent for the game. The Hawks were led by Josh Smith who put up 22 points on eight-of-22 shooting on the evening, and Jannero Pargo ended the night with 15 points but all of them came in the first half.
The Hawks also were able to contain Dwight Howard to only 12 points which is eight points below his average, but Howard did have 12 rebounds and five blocks in the losing effort.
Even without starting guard Joe Johnson, the Atlanta Hawks are having their way with the Orlando Magic and are leading 47-30 at the half. It could be that the Hawks are back at home after a five-game road swing, but they are playing like a different team. The Hawks are being led by Jannero Pargo who has scored 15 points off the bench, and in only 13 minutes. Pargo is six-of-nine from the field and half of those made baskets have come from three-point range. Josh Smith is right there with Pargo with 14 points.
The Hawks have held Dwight Howard to four points on only two-of-three shooting, but he does have seven rebounds and seven blocks. The Hawks defense has held the Magic to 33 percent shooting and has not allowed any Magic player to score in double figures.