Hawks edge Celtics thanks to MillsapDec 31, 2013 - 10:12 PM Boston Celtics, 92-91, from TD Garden.
Millsap has stepped up his play since Al Horford went down for the season with a torn right pectoral. The former Jazz forward has averaged 28 points and 11.7 rebounds as the Hawks improved to 2-1 since the injury.
Jeff Teague and Kyle Korver added 16 and 14 points, respectively, while the latter hit a fourth quarter 3-pointer to extend his streak of consecutive games with a triple to 101. Both players had five assists.
The loss spoiled Kelly Olynyk's career-best 21 points on 8-of-11 shooting off Boston's bench. Kris Humphries finished with 18 points and 10 boards, also off the bench, as the Celtics reserves outscored their counterparts, 56-16.
After a back-and-forth opening 12 minutes, the Celtics scored the first 13 points of the second period before Mike Scott finally broke the seal for Atlanta with a baseline jumper.
Boston's lead reached 18 points midway through the period, but Cartier Martin knocked down a pair of treys as Atlanta closed the half on a 15-4 run to shrink the gap to 44-39 at halftime.
"We started off the game so terrible," said Korver. "We just couldn't find any rhythm and they had us totally out of sync. We got a little momentum and were able to carry that over to the second half."
The Hawks carried their momentum into the third, scoring the first six points of the frame to pull in front. The visitors' lead was six on a Teague finger roll when Boston came charging back.
Olynyk's 3 ignited the Celtics' offense, as they rebuilt a 67-62 edge heading into the fourth.
Korver missed his first four outside shots but finally extended his streak with a four-point play with 6:10 remaining in the game.
Gerald Wallace followed the Korver highlight with a layup before Atlanta ran off 10 in a row to pull back in front.
Teague's free throws with 1:30 resulted in the final margin, as both teams came up empty the rest of the way. Jordan Crawford missed two shots in the final seconds for the Celtics, losers in four of five.
"Jordan lives for that," said Celtics coach Brad Stevens. "I think he'll probably beat himself up over it, but that's OK. We play again on Thursday."
The win snapped Atlanta's three-game losing streak against the Celtics ... Atlanta shot just 5-of-29 from behind the arc, while Boston shot 5-of-20 ... The Celtics made 16-of-17 from the free throw line ... Boston outscored Atlanta 28-10 in transition ... The Celtics will play six of their next seven games away from home.
Dec 31 3:19 PM
- ATLANTA: 62
End of 3rd
Dec 31 2:44 PM
- ATLANTA: 39
Dec 31 2:05 PM
- ATLANTA: 20
End of 1st
Dec 31 1:34 PM
- ATLANTA: 0
1st Quarter - 11:41
Dec 31 1:11 PM
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