A double-double from Jeff Teague’s and 28 points from the bench help the Hawks stave off a fourth quarter charge from the Detroit Pistons. Rodney Stuckey scored 12 of his game high 27 points for the Pistons in the fourth but it wasn’t enough as the Hawks prevailed 101-96.
Atlanta jumped out to an 11-2 run early in the first as Detroit struggled to find the twine in the first 4 minutes. The cold spell shifted benches over the next 4 as Detroit tied the game on a Brandon Knight layup. Detroit’s bench carried the scoring load in the second. Will Bynum, Damian Wilkins, Jonas Jerebko, and Rodney Stuckey combined to score 21 of the 23 points in the quarter. With all of the starters, save Knight, going scoreless, the Hawks were able to extend their lead to 9 points.
Stuckey made his presence felt at the close of the third, whittling down the Hawks 12 point lead to just 10 on two free throws. The baskets were just the beginning of a 10-0 run by the Pistons. Two more free throws by Stuckey gave the Pistons their first and only lead of the game.
Timely shooting from Josh Smith helped the Hawks regain the advantage for good with 5 minutes remaining. Atlanta extended the slim lead to 7 points on a 20-footer from Joe Johnson. Stuckey picked up his final points of the night on a three pointer with 3.7 seconds remaining.
The win helped Atlanta improve to 33-23 (19-8 at home) just 1.5 games behind the fourth seeded Pacers (34-21).
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