Final - OT
  for this game

Lue hands Nets another last-second loss

Feb 4, 2007 - 9:46 PM EAST RUTHERFORD, New Jersey (Ticker) -- Tyronn Lue became the latest player to drive a dagger into the heart of the New Jersey Nets.

Lue buried a jumper at the buzzer to lift the Atlanta Hawks to a 101-99 overtime victory over the Nets, who suffered a another heartbreaking loss in the final seconds.

Continental Airlines Arena had been a house of horrors for the Hawks, who had lost 15 of their last 17 games at New Jersey, including nine straight since December 26, 2000. But Lue was undaunted by Atlanta's recent history here, scoring the Hawks' final seven points, including a deep jumper from the left wing for the win.

New Jersey suffered three losses on a recent five-game road trip in the final seconds as victims of clutch shots by Sacramento's Mike Bibby, Golden State's Monta Ellis and Cuttino Mobley of the Los Angeles Clippers.

Atlanta's Joe Johnson scored 37 points but it was Lue, who played just 24 seconds in overtime, that sent the Nets' reeling.

"I'm not playing a lot because I'm still injured from my hamstring, but being able to come back at the end of the game and have a chance to win, it's a great feeling," Lue said.

After sitting out the entire fourth quarter and the first 4 1/2 minutes of overtime, Lue entered the game with 33 seconds left and buried a jumper 19 seconds later to give the Hawks a 97-94 lead.

New Jersey's Vince Carter answered with a pair of free throws, but Lue sank a pair at the other end with nine second left to make it 99-96.

After a timeout, New Jersey ran a play for Carter on the right wing and the All-Star responded. Coming off a good screen by Mikki Moore, Carter took a pass from Jason Kidd and buried a 3-pointer to tie the game, 99-99, with 2.9 seconds remaining.

With the Nets all over Johnson, Lue took the game into his own hands, taking a couple of hard dribbles at Antoine Wright and pulling up to send the Hawks to their third consecutive road win.

The Hawks mobbed Lue and halfcourt before carrying him off the floor as the veteran point guard gestured to the stunned crowd.

"I've made big shots for this team before so they have faith in me to make big shots," Lue said. "If I take them and I miss them, that's part of the game. If I make them, that's what they expect me to do."

"He was the second option," Hawks coach Mike Woodson said. "We tried to take the offense away from Joe and let him post up in the baseline area but (Jason) Kidd is a great defender. Lue was the second option and he popped out and made the play."

It is the ninth road win of the season for Atlanta, which has already surpassed its total from last season, when it won just eight games away from home.

"We've been playing pretty good on the road," Woodson said. "I just wish we could take care of our home games. That's how you make the playoffs, by winning at home. This was a big win for our team."

Carter finished with 27 points and eight assists and Jason Kidd collected 13 and 11 for the Nets, who have lost three straight games and six of their last eight. They lost their last two games by a combined 57 points.

"In the past we've been able to close games out but this year that's just not happening for us," Kidd said. "They all hurt, whether you lose by one or lose by 30. They all go in the wrong column."

"We need to correct the first 44 minutes of the game," New Jersey coach Lawrence Frank said.

Johnson scored 25 points after halftime, but the Hawks could not pull away from the Nets, who erased a nine-point deficit early in the fourth quarter and climbed out of a seven-point hole with 3 1/2 minutes left.

New Jersey reeled off seven straight points to forge an 82-82 tie with 1:45 left, but Marvin Williams buried a jumper at 1:19 to reclaim the lead for Atlanta. Johnson sank a fallaway jump shot with 44 seconds left for a four-point cushion.

But Carter responded with a quick layup and the Nets tied it with 10 seconds to go when Jason Kidd followed a miss by Josh Smith with a long pass to rookie Marcus Williams for a layup.

Smith had a chance to redeem himself but missed a wide-open 3-pointer from the right corner as time expired.

"I wanted it so bad," said Smith, who had 14 points on 5-of-17 shooting. "When it left my hand it felt so good. It didn't drop and I was frustrated but you always get another shot later in life."

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