The Atlanta Hawks have an interesting strategy to contain Dwight Howard. They are putting every reserve big they can at him, frustrating the former Southwest Atlanta Christian Academy star and getting him into foul trouble. Then they are taking it right to him inside. So far, it's worked.
Josh Smith has 17 points and Marvin Williams posted eight to lead the Hawks to a 46-43 lead over the Orlando Magic at the break.
Hedo Turkoglu posted 11 and Howard has nine in 14 minutes for Orlando, which shot just 45-percent (17-for-38) in the first half.
Howard sat for most of the first quarter after picking up two fouls in the game's first four minutes. He played through most of the second quarter without picking up foul No. 3, but Smith went to the hoop with 90 seconds left and drew contact from the Atlanta-native. Howard spent the rest of the half watching the game from the bench.
Hawks fans have to like the intensity of this one. The Hawks are doing all the right things in the basketball game -- you know those things that actually separate the team from winning or losing. They are attacking the post, winning the battle in the paint and getting to the free throw line.
Orlando is getting to the charity stripe, too, but they are a miserable 6-for-12 from the free throw line, which as of right now, is the difference in the ball game.
Joe Johnson has six points and Jamal Crawford five for Atlanta, which shot 50-percent (19-for-38) from the field.