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NBA AT GEORGIA TECH

FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL --- --- --- --- ----- NEW JERSEY 23 21 33 27 104 ATLANTA 26 25 30 33 114 FINAL

HIGH SCORERS: NJN - SAM CASSELL 24, KEITH VAN HORN 22, KERRY KITTLES 20 ATL - ALAN HENDERSON 26, STEVE SMITH 25, TYRONE CORBIN 17


NEW JERSEY (104) AT ATLANTA (114)

NEW JERSEY REBOUNDS PLAYER POS MIN FGM-FGA FTM-FTA OFF-DEF-TOT AST PF ST TO PTS ====== === === ======= ======= =========== === == == == ===

GILL F 34 6-13 0-0 1 4 5 1 6 0 1 13 VAN HORN F 35 9-23 2-3 7 6 13 5 5 0 2 22 J WILLIAMS C 32 1-9 1-2 5 5 10 2 5 1 0 3 CASSELL G 38 10-21 4-7 3 2 5 8 2 0 5 24 KITTLES G 43 7-16 4-5 2 3 5 1 2 4 0 20 BENOIT 17 3-8 0-0 1 1 2 1 2 0 0 8 GATLING 16 5-12 1-3 4 3 7 0 5 0 0 11 DOUGLAS 10 0-2 0-2 1 0 1 3 1 0 2 0 CAGE 10 0-0 0-0 1 1 2 0 0 0 0 0 HARRIS 5 0-1 3-3 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 3 EDWARDS DNP - COACH'S DECISION

TOTALS 240 41-105 15-25 25 25 50 21 28 5 10 104 (.390) (.600) TEAM REBS: 12 TOTAL TO: 11(15 PTS)

ATLANTA REBOUNDS PLAYER POS MIN FGM-FGA FTM-FTA OFF-DEF-TOT AST PF ST TO PTS ====== === === ======= ======= =========== === == == == ===

HENDERSON F 40 9-16 8-11 7 5 12 2 5 0 1 26 CORBIN F 34 7-13 1-1 0 5 5 3 1 0 2 17 MUTOMBO C 33 3-5 6-7 1 9 10 0 5 0 2 12 SMITH G 43 8-18 7-7 3 5 8 8 3 1 2 25 BLAYLOCK G 40 4-14 1-4 2 1 3 8 1 5 2 10 LAETTNER 20 5-8 6-10 2 2 4 2 4 1 3 16 BARRY 15 1-1 0-0 0 5 5 3 2 1 2 2 BROWN 15 2-5 2-2 0 2 2 0 1 0 2 6 ANDERSON DNP - COACH'S DECISION CRAWFORD DNP - COACH'S DECISION MILLER DNP - COACH'S DECISION OLIVER DNP - COACH'S DECISION

TOTALS 240 39-80 31-42 15 34 49 26 22 8 16 114 (.488) (.738) TEAM REBS: 15 TOTAL TO: 16(21 PTS)

NEW JERSEY 23 21 33 27 - 104 ATLANTA 26 25 30 33 - 114

BLOCKED SHOTS: NEW JERSEY - KITTLES 2, GATLING, BENOIT. ATLANTA - MUTOMBO 8, BLAYLOCK 2, SMITH, HENDERSON, LAETTNER. 3-PT. FIELD GOALS: NEW JERSEY 7-21 (.333), GILL 1-4, VAN HORN 2-5, CASSELL 0-2, KITTLES 2-3, BENOIT 2-7. ATLANTA 5-12 (.417), CORBIN 2-4, SMITH 2-4, BLAYLOCK 1-4. TECHNICALS: NEW JERSEY - GATLING, DOUGLAS, CASSELL, ATLANTA - MUTOMBO, HEAD COACH WILKENS. OFFICIALS: MARK WUNDERLICH, TONY BROTHERS, BILL OAKES. A - 8,499. T - 2:17.


NEW JERSEY (104) fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp Gill 34 6-13 0-0 1-5 1 6 13 Van Horn 35 9-23 2-3 7-13 5 5 22 J Williams 32 1-9 1-2 5-10 2 5 3 Cassell 38 10-21 4-7 3-5 8 2 24 Kittles 43 7-16 4-5 2-5 1 2 20 Benoit 17 3-8 0-0 1-2 1 2 8 Gatling 16 5-12 1-3 4-7 0 5 11 Douglas 10 0-2 0-2 1-1 3 1 0 Cage 10 0-0 0-0 1-2 0 0 0 Harris 5 0-1 3-3 0-0 0 0 3 Edwards DNP - coach's decision _______________________________________________ TOTALS 24041-105 15-25 25-50 21 28 104 _______________________________________________

Percentages: FG-.390, FT-.600. 3-Point Goals: 7-21, .333 (Gill 1-4, Van Horn 2-5, Cassell 0-2, Kittles 2-3, Benoit 2-7). Team rebounds: 12. Blocked shots: 4 (Kittles 2, Gatling, Benoit). Turnovers: 11 (Cassell 5, Douglas 2, Van Horn 2, Gill). Steals: 5 (Kittles 4, J Williams).

ATLANTA (114) fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp Henderson 40 9-16 8-11 7-12 2 5 26 Corbin 34 7-13 1-1 0-5 3 1 17 Mutombo 33 3-5 6-7 1-10 0 5 12 Smith 43 8-18 7-7 3-8 8 3 25 Blaylock 40 4-14 1-4 2-3 8 1 10 Laettner 20 5-8 6-10 2-4 2 4 16 Barry 15 1-1 0-0 0-5 3 2 2 Brown 15 2-5 2-2 0-2 0 1 6 Anderson DNP - coach's decision Crawford DNP - coach's decision Miller DNP - coach's decision Oliver DNP - coach's decision _______________________________________________ TOTALS 240 39-80 31-42 15-49 26 22 114 _______________________________________________

Percentages: FG-.488, FT-.738. 3-Point Goals: 5-12, .417 (Corbin 2-4, Smith 2-4, Blaylock 1-4). Team rebounds: 15. Blocked shots: 13 (Mutombo 8, Blaylock 2, Smith, Henderson, Laettner). Turnovers: 16 (Laettner 3, Barry 2, Blaylock 2, Brown 2, Corbin 2, Mutombo 2, Smith 2, Henderson). Steals: 8 (Blaylock 5, Barry, Laettner, Smith). ____________________________________________ New Jersey 23 21 33 27 - 104 Atlanta 26 25 30 33 - 114 ____________________________________________ Technical fouls: New Jersey 3 (Gatling, 8:10 2nd; Douglas, 7:25 2nd; Cassell, 5:11 2nd). Atlanta 2 (Mutombo, 8:25 2nd; Head Coach Wilkens, 7:18 4th). Flagrant fouls: None. A: 8,499. T: 2:17. Officials: Mark Wunderlich, Tony Brothers, Bill Oakes.


GAME RECAP

Steve Smith scored 14 of his 25 points in the fourth quarter, including eight in the decisive game-ending run, as the Atlanta Hawks ended the New Jersey Nets' longest winning streak in two years with a 114-104 victory.

A jumper by Atlanta's Tyrone Corbin tied the game, 98-98, to spark the deciding 18-6 burst with 4:07 to play. Corbin, who scored seven of his 17 points during the run, followed with a three-pointer before Smith drained a 15-footer for a 103-98 edge with 2:27 left.

Smith hit all six of his free throws thereafter to help secure the win for the Hawks, who have won seven straight at home against the Nets. Alan Henderson had 26 points and 12 rebounds as Atlanta snapped a three-game losing streak.

"We came out with a lot of intensity and we played with a lot of emotion and enthusiasm, and as a result, played happy tonight," Smith said. "We haven't put together four good quarters in a long time. It was big for us to keep our composure and that's what we did."

Sam Cassell scored 24 points and Keith Van Horn added 22 for the Nets, who had won five straight games for the first time since February 13th-21st, 1996. New Jersey has not won six in a row since the 1992-93 season and has failed to win in Atlanta since January 21st, 1994.

"We really didn't deserve to win, they didn't either, it should have been a tie," Cassell said. "They made some big baskets down the stretch, they gave their all to beat us."

Atlanta led by seven at halftime and opened its biggest lead at 75-64 on a three-point play by Dikembe Mutombo with 3:01 left in the third quarter. But the Nets responded with a 21-6 run to go in front early in the fourth period.

New Jersey closed the third quarter with a 13-4 spurt, as a three-pointer by Kerry Kittles, who scored 20 points, cut the deficit to two points. But Christian Laettner hit a layup with 16 seconds left to give Atlanta an 81-77 edge heading into the final period. Laettner, the subject of swirling trade rumors, scored 16 points off the bench after missing the last four games with the flu.

Chris Gatling had a three-point play and a layup around a three-pointer by David Benoit to put the Nets in front, 85-81, with 10:33 to go. But the Nets' defense was unable to hold off the Hawks, giving up 33 points the rest of the way.

"I was happy with our performance. The intensity we played with was something I hadn't seen from them in a while," said Hawks coach Lenny Wilkens, who coached his 2,000th game tonight. "We played with a lot of energy. We really got everybody involved. We pushed it, we moved the ball, that's how we have to play."

After Smith's jumper gave the Nets a 103-98 edge, Cassell sank a pair of foul shots. Smith answered with two of his own before Corbin hit from 20 feet for a 107-100 lead with 1:40 remaining. Cassell made 1-of-2 from the line and Smith sank two free throws before Van Horn was fouled on a follow slam with 47 seconds left.

Van Horn made the foul shot to trim the deficit to 109-104, but the Nets failed to score again. Henderson hit a free throw and Smith and Chucky Brown each added a pair in the waning seconds.

"The emphasis tonight was to play aggressive basketball, relax a little bit and have some fun," Corbin said. "We haven't had too much fun lately, so we wanted to go out and be aggressive and let the game come to us."

Henderson, who was one point shy of his career high, has stepped into the starting role since Laettner became ill, averaged 21.4 points in five games since becoming a starter.

"I've known all along that I'm a starting quality player, but Lenny thought he could best utilize me coming off the bench and that's fine with me, too," Henderson said.

Smith had eight rebounds, eight assists and made all seven of his free throws for Atlanta which made 31-of-42 from the line. Mutombo contributed 12 points, 10 rebounds while tying a season high with eight blocks and Mookie Blaylock chipped in 10 points, eight assists and five steals.

Kendall Gill scored 13 points and Gatling added 11 and seven boards off the bench for the Nets, who hit just 15-of-25 free throws. New Jersey, which fell to 19-3 when scoring 100 points or more, attempted 105 shots, hitting 41 (39 percent).

"There were a couple of plays where we had open looks that we missed and they made down the other end when they had an open look," Nets coach John Calipari said. "There was an energy not there that we usually have and we still had a chance to win, which shows we're pretty darn good."

Jayson Williams, the Nets' lone All-Star, was held to just three points on 1-of-9 shooting and grabbed 10 rebounds, nearly four below his average.

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