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Teague leads Hawks past Pistons

Alan Draper profile picture
Sports Editor
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ATLANTA — The Detroit Pistons road woes continued as the Atlanta Hawks kept up their success at home.

Guard Jeff Teague had a season-high 28 points and forward Paul Millsap had a double-double with 15 points and 12 rebounds as the Hawks (6-5) improved to 5-1 in Atlanta with a 99-89 victory over the Pistons (3-10).

“Jeff Teague was very good,” Hawks coach Mike Budenholzer said. “A lot of people talk about his points and his offense, but I though his defense was very good on the ball.”

Teague, who had six assists, made 9 of 15 shots, including 2 of 3 from behind the arc, and was 8-for-8 from the foul line. He also had two steals and a pair of blocked shots.

“I was just trying to be aggressive,” said Teague, who was able to use his speed to get to the basket with seeming ease. “That’s the way we want to play.”

Center Andre Drummond had 16 rebounds to go with 13 points, but Detroit fell to 1-6 on the road with their fourth straight overall loss. The Pistons, who shot 37.3 percent, have won just once in their past eight games.

“We just don’t have anyone playing at a very high level (offensively),” Detroit coach Stan Van Gundy said. “We’re having so much trouble getting the ball in the basket.”

Forward Josh Smith had 16 points and guard D.J. Augustine contributed 14 off the bench for the Pistons, who lost guard Brandon Jennings to a hyper-extended left thumb in the third quarter.

The Hawks led by 19 points, but Drummond’s tip at the third-quarter buzzer cut the advantage to 74-64 after a 13-4 run. Then the Pistons scored the first 10 points of the final quarter to pull even.

“I thought our resolve was really, really good,” Van Gundy said.

Forward Kyle Korver, though, got the lead back for the Hawks with a 3-pointer that made it 79-76 and Teague pushed the advantage to 89-80 with a 3-pointer of his own. Atlanta was never in danger after that.

“Basketball is a game of runs and we were able to respond,” said Korver, who had 12 points.

“We just struggle down the last few minutes of games,” Van Gundy said. “We’ve got to find some answers.”

Ahead 29-25 after the first quarter, the Hawks pushed their lead to 11 points midway in the second and led 50-40 at halftime as forward Al Horford, who scored 14 points, hit a jumper at the buzzer.

“We wanted to come out a play hard and we did that,” Millsap said.

Millsap scored all 10 of his first-half points in the opening quarter, when Atlanta shot 60 percent. Smith had 10 points at the break for the Pistons, who made 35.7 percent of their first-half shots.

“We’re just in a shooting slump right now,” said Smith, who was 8-for-9.

NOTES: F DeMarre Carroll, who had 10 points and seven rebounds, returned for the Hawks after missing four games because of a groin strain and started in place F Thabo Sefolosha. The Hawks were 2-2 without Carroll. … The Hawks sent rookie F/C Adreian Payne, the 15th overall pick in the draft, to Fort Wayne of the NBA Development League for games Friday and Saturday in Erie, Pa. He started the season with plantar fasciitis in his left foot and hasn’t played in an NBA game. … The Hawks won their first four home games before losing 114-109 to the Los Angeles Lakers on Wednesday. … The Pistons lost 10 straight in Atlanta before a 102-95 victory at the end of last season. … F Josh Smith, an Atlanta native, spent his first nine seasons with the Hawks before signing with the Pistons last season. He averaged just 9.3 points and shot 30.8 percent from the field in three games against the Hawks.

Alan is an experienced writer of online betting and casino guides. He is one of the main editors of Basketballinsiders.

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