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Question of the Day
ATLANTA (AP) - After a horrible stretch, the Atlanta Hawks are healthy again - well, sort of - and feel like they can move back up in the Eastern Conference.
Jeff Teague equaled his career best with 34 points, Paul Millsap had the first triple-double of his career and the Hawks extended their longest winning streak of the season to five in a row, beating the Toronto Raptors 118-113 in overtime Tuesday night.
They’re looking to improve on that position in the final month of the regular season.
“We wanted to win this game really bad,” Teague said. “We’ve been playing well lately.”
Even after losing center Al Horford for the season with a torn pectoral muscle, the Hawks were surprisingly four games above .500 at the start of February when the injuries really started to pile up. That sent them into a tailspin that threatened their bid to even make the playoffs.
Now, they seem back on track.
“We’re not going to make any excuses,” Millsap said. “We’ve just got to push forward and try to win some games.”
Coming off a victory the previous night at Charlotte, the Hawks overcame an early 13-point deficit in a game that went back and forth in the final quarter. Millsap missed a chance to win it at the end of regulation, but Teague knocked down four free throws in the closing seconds to clinch it for Atlanta.
DeMar DeRozan led the Raptors with 29 points, but he had two crucial turnovers in the last minute of regulation, getting called for an offensive foul and slipping on another drive, losing the ball out of bounds.
“A lot of things didn’t go our way,” DeRozan said, “but we shouldn’t have put ourselves in that situation to start with.”
Toronto went more than 3 1-2 minutes without scoring in the overtime, allowing the Hawks to hang on when most of their shots weren’t falling, either.
“We’ve got to learn from it,” DeRozan said.
Kyle Korver added 16 points for Atlanta. DeRozan had a double-double, pulling down 10 rebounds, while Kyle Lowry chipped in with 20 points.
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