The Atlanta Hawks dug themselves out of a big hole in the fourth quarter but their comeback bid fell just short as they fall 79-76 to the Boston Celtics.
Atlanta entered the fourth quarter with the lead but quickly fell apart. A Boston run put the Celtics up by as many as 15 points in the fourth. The Hawks trailed 75-60 with 2:57 remaining before unleashing their own 16-4 run to close out the game. However, it wasn't enough as Jeff Teague's game-tying attempt was way off preserving the win for the Celtics.
Joe Johnson scored 14 of his 25 points in the fourth quarter but couldn't get his hands on the ball for the final shot. Zaza Pachulia finished with 16 points and 13 rebounds while battling the Celtics' front line the entire night. Pachulia left the game late in the third quarter but later returned with stitches in his head after taking an elbow.
Josh Smith once again did a little bit of everything finishing with 10 points, 11 rebounds and eight assists but was just 5-20 from the floor.
Ray Allen led the way for the Celtics with 19 points while Kevin Garnett finished with 16 points and eight rebounds. Paul Pierce added 13 and Rajon Rondo finished with 10 points, 13 assists and six steals.
The Atlanta Hawks take a 33-31 lead into halftime against the Boston Celtics in a good defensive contest by both sides. The Hawks led 15-12 at the end of the first quarter and were outscored 19-18 in the second by the Celtics.
Josh Smith did a lot of his damage from the perimeter and has eight points, four rebounds and four assists at the break. Joe Johnson added six points and Kirk Hinrich five for the Hawks. Zaza Pachulia has four points and eight first half rebounds. The Hawks hit 14 of 41 shot attempts in the first half for 34 percent.
Rajon Rondo scored eight points and handed out six assists in the first half to lead the Celtics. Kevin Garnett also scored eight points and grabbed a team-high five rebounds. Paul Pierce scored four points before picking up his third foul late in the half and heading to the bench. The Celtics hit 13 of 37 attempts in the first half but committed 11 first-half turnovers.
The injuries continue to pile up for the Atlanta Hawks who can add Jannero Pargo to their injury list after the guard had successful surgery on his appendix Sunday night. Pargo is expected to miss about a month while he recovers from the surgery.
Glad to report Jannero Pargo had successful surgery on his appendix this evening (in CLEV), but he will be out of action at least a month.