Atlanta downs Toronto, earns playoff spotApr 17, 2012 - 3:25 AM Toronto, ON (Sports Network) - Ivan Johnson scored a career-high 21 points as the Atlanta Hawks clinched a playoff berth with a 109-87 victory over the Toronto Raptors in the back end of a home-and-home set at Air Canada Centre.
Jeff Teague added 19 points and 10 assists, while Joe Johnson netted 18 points for the Hawks, who finished up their road schedule with a 17-16 mark as their remaining five games will all be played at home.
"I'm glad we were able to turn right back around and play this team again," said Joe Johnson. "That way we can really go ahead and get that sour taste out of our mouths. We understand that we were the better team last night and we wanted to come out and show it and we did."
Toronto won Sunday's game, 102-86.
Atlanta kept pace with the Orlando Magic, who defeated the 76ers on Monday, and maintained the No. 5 seed in the Eastern Conference playoff race.
DeMar DeRozan scored 22 points, James Johnson contributed 18 and Alan Anderson finished with 12 for Toronto, which had its two-game win streak snapped.
After a DeRozan layup gave the Raptors an early 10-6 lead, Atlanta reeled off a 10-0 spurt that was capped by back-to-back three-pointers by Teague and Joe Johnson to take a 16-10 advantage at the midpoint of the first.
The Hawks were able to maintain that lead until Toronto closed out the opening frame with a 9-5 push to carry a 32-30 edge into the second quarter.
Ivan Johnson then opened the second by connecting on consecutive field goals around a Joe Johnson free throw to put the Hawks back on top, 34-33, before the Raptors answered with a 9-2 run to retake a 42-36 lead.
Atlanta, though, closed out the half with an 18-9 spurt to hold a 54-51 advantage at the break.
Toronto stayed within striking distance for the majority of the third quarter but after Anderson's trey closed the deficit to 67-64 with a little over three minutes left in the quarter, Ivan Johnson recorded five straight points to spark a 12-4 run that gave Atlanta a 79-68 lead heading into the fourth.
Atlanta carried that momentum into the final stanza by scoring the first eight points to stretch its lead up 87-68 and held at least a 13-point advantage for the remainder of the contest.
"They came out and made some shots," Raptors head coach Dwane Casey said about Atlanta. "I thought our disposition defensively was different than last night and I don't know why. I thought we ran out of gas."
Raptors starting point guard Jose Calderon missed his third straight game with an eye injury...Atlanta won the season series between the teams, 3-1, and has taken 11 of the last 13 meetings...Toronto held a 46-42 edge on the glass and outscored Atlanta in the paint, 50-38.
- ATLANTA: 109
Apr 16 9:22 PM
- ATLANTA: 79
End of 3rd
Apr 16 8:52 PM
- ATLANTA: 54
Apr 16 8:11 PM
- ATLANTA: 30
End of 1st
Apr 16 7:37 PM
- ATLANTA: 0
1st Quarter - 12:00
Apr 16 7:11 PM
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