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Hawks Vs. Magic Game 3 Score: Joe Johnson Posts 17 To Help Atlanta To 51-42 Edge At Half

The Atlanta Hawks are sharing the basketball, hitting shots, playing defense and having fun on the court. So are their fans.

Joe Johnson has 17 points and Josh Smith and Kirk Hinrich posted eight each to lead Atlanta to a 51-42 edge over the Orlando Magic at the break.

Al Horford netted seven and Jamal Crawford added five for Atlanta, which has 14 assists on 23 field goals.

"(We're) just playing solid defense and not giving second chance points," Horford succinctly told the Hawks TV broadcast at the break. "Our adrenaline is flowing (thanks to the crowd). We hope the crowd will keep it up the entire game."

Atlanta was having a bit of trouble with Orlando's perimeter game in the first quarter as the Magic really for the first time this season had success from behind the arc -- hitting at a 3-for-6 clip in the first frame. But the Hawks made the necessary adjustment and shut down the team from land of Mickey Mouse. Orlando connected on just 1-of-8 tries from 3-point range in the second quarter.

It's not like Orlando's inside shots were falling either. Orlando, which shot 60-percent (9-for-15) in the first quarter made just 5-of-21 (24-percent) in the second. That all favored an Atlanta team that's sharing the basketball, making shots and taking care of business in "Dwight out" conditions at an amped up Highlight Factory.

The Hawks opened up a bit of separation with an actual Dwight out to start the second quarter. And even when Dwight Howard returned a few minutes into the frame, he didn't do much at all to help close the gap. The former Southwest Atlanta Christian Academy star had just two points in the second.

Jason Richardson netted a team-high 11 points and Howard had nine for Orlando, which holds just a 21-17 edge on the glass.

Photographs by coka_koehler used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.