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Bobcats 95, Hawks 93

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ATLANTA — Guard Chris Douglas-Roberts made a running six-footer at the buzzer to give the Charlotte Bobcats a 95-93 win over the Atlanta Hawks on Monday night.

With 2.6 seconds left, Douglas-Roberts took a pass from forward Josh McRoberts, drove toward the basket and made the winning shot. Douglas-Roberts finished with five points.

Center Al Jefferson scored 27 points to lead the Bobcats. With the game tied at 91-91, Jefferson took a pass from guard Gary Neal and knocked down a five-footer. Atlanta then tied the game on a 16-foot jumper by guard Lou Williams.

Jefferson, who added 15 rebounds, recorded a double-double for the eighth straight game. He has 41 double-doubles on the season. The nine-year veteran was held to an average of 16.7 points in the first three meetings against Atlanta. On Monday, he made his first four shots and had 12 points in the opening quarter en route to his seventh consecutive games with 20 or more points.

The win ensured Charlotte (42-39) of the second winning record in franchise history, joining the 2009-10 team. The Bobcats broke an 11-game losing streak against the Hawks and ended a 12-game losing streak against playoff-bound teams.

Charlotte remains one game behind the Washington Wizards (43-38) in the battle for the No. 6 seed in the Eastern Conference playoffs. Each team has one game remaining, and the Bobcats hold the tiebreaker after winning the season series 3-1. Charlotte plays host to the Chicago Bulls on Wednesday, the same day Washington plays the Celtics in Boston.

Either the Bobcats or the Wizards will finish seventh and face a first-round playoff matchup against the second-seeded Miami Heat.

The bench provided crucial points Monday for Charlotte. Guard Gary Neal scored 17 points, 10 in the fourth quarter, and guard Luke Ridnour scored 10 points, all in the fourth quarter.

Charlotte also celebrated the return of guard Kemba Walker, who missed the previous two games. Walker scored five points but had a team-leading seven assists.

Atlanta, which previously sewed up the No. 8 playoff spot in the Eastern Conference, opted not to play three of its starters, forward Paul Millsap, forward DeMarre Carroll and guard Kyle Korver. Millsap and Carroll both have been bothered both by sore wrists, and Korver continues to nurse a delicate back that caused him to miss six games with spasms.

Atlanta (37-44) was led by forward Mike Scott, who scored 20 points.

The Hawks kept pace with Charlotte early, but a 9-0 run allowed the Bobcats to build their largest lead of the quarter. Atlanta hung close, thanks to nine points from forward Cartier Martin, and drew to within a point at 24-23 on guard Shelvin Mack’s late 3-pointer. Charlotte led 26-24 after the first period, as Jefferson had 12 points.

Atlanta was able to take its first lead with 7:07 left in the first half on a runner by Scott and stretched its lead to as many as eight points when Scott drained a 3-pointer with 2:09 left. Scott scored nine of his 11 first-half points in the quarter, and Atlanta led 50-44 at intermission.

NOTES: Steve Koonin, the president of Turner Entertainment Networks, was named co-owner and CEO of the Atlanta Hawks. Koonin will oversee all business, financial and strategic operations of the Hawks and Philips Arena. … Atlanta G Jeff Teague was selected the NBA’s Eastern Conference Player of the Week for games played April 7-13. He averaged 20.3 points, 5.8 assists and 1.75 steals for the week and helped the Hawks got 3-1. … Atlanta finishes the regular season Wednesday against the Bucks in Milwaukee.

Up to the minute news and reports from the news wire of The Sports Xchange.

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