Nets fly past Hawks again behind Harris, CarterNov 16, 2008 - 5:04 AM By Phil Foley PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer
ATLANTA (Ticker) -- Devin Harris and Vince Carter teamed up to lead the New Jersey Nets to their first winning streak of the season.
Harris scored 33 points and Carter poured in 29, leading the Nets to a 119-107 win over the suddenly slumping Atlanta Hawks on Saturday night at Philips Arena.
Ryan Anderson had 17 points and Atlanta-native Jarvis Hayes added 14 before leaving with a fourth quarter injury for the Nets, who swept a home-and-home series against the Hawks.
"It's a good moment and something we have to build on," Nets coach Lawrence Frank said. "To play the same team twice and get a win both times, it's a nice mark for us. It's definitely tough going against the same team the next night. We had to weather some big storms and we were able to hit some big shots."
Joe Johnson scored 31 points and Ronald Murray and Marvin Williams poured in 14 each for Atlanta, which has dropped three straight after starting the season at 6-0.
The Nets have struggled for most of the young season, losing five of their first seven games before facing the once-soaring Hawks a rare set of back-to-back losses.
"I have to give New Jersey credit," Atlanta coach Mike Woodson said. "We had no answer for them from a defensive standpoint. We can't blame it on fatigue, because they played last night as well. We have a stretch (of four games in five nights), but that's still no excuse. We have lost some defensive swagger and intensity."
Atlanta clawed back from a 15-point first half deficit, tying the game at 63-63 after Joe Johnson split a pair of free throws with 6:28 remaining in the third.
But Carter and Harris caught fire behind the arc.
The duo accounted for 15 points during New Jersey's decisive 19-6 third quarter run, draining four 3-pointers in the stretch, including a 25-footer by Carter to give the Nets an 82-69 lead with 2:08 remaining in the quarter.
"We stayed in attack mode and stayed within ourselves," Harris said. "Me and Vince have been able to get in the corner and create havoc."
Carter struggled in the first half, scoring just four points on 2-for-7 shooting for the field. But the eight-time All-Star caught on fire in the third quarter, scoring 19 points on 7-for-9 shooting from the field and connecting on all five shots from behind the arc.
"In the second half, I wanted to become the aggressor," Carter said. "I felt it was time for me to be more aggressive and come out and make more plays. I wanted to shoot the ball with confidence."
The 31-year old shooting guard also set a milestone in the frame, moving into third place in New Jersey's all-time points list, passing former teammate Jason Kidd with 7,402 points.
"Sorry J. Kidd," Carter joked. "It's an honor. The Nets gave me an opportunity and a second life. They believed in me. They put me around great guys. I was glad to deliver."
New Jersey, which lead by as many as 20 in the fourth quarter, shot 69-percent from the field in the third and connected on all eight attempts from beyond the 3-point line.
"Confidence does amazing things," Harris said. "Doesn't it?"
Everything seems to be going right for the Nets, who doubled their win total with two wins in consecutive nights against one of the hotter teams in the NBA, scoring at will against one of the league's better defensive teams.
"One-on-one, we haven't been guarding our man particularly well," Johnson said. "And I'll take a lot of heat for that. But at the same time, we haven't been manning up and guarding our guys. Guys are flying by us and getting to the hole, and then breaking our defense down. We're starting to lose a little trust in each other."
New Jersey is also thankful to have Harris back from a sprained left ankle.
The 25-year-old point guard returned from a three-game absence to post 30-points on Friday in the Nets' 115-108 triumph on Friday night despite some discomfort.
The only pain felt on Saturday night was the pain that he inflicted on the Hawks.
Harris tallied 11 of his 33 points in the final quarter, leading his club to the easy victory.
"I'm in attack mode," said Harris, who is averaging almost 34 points over his last three games. "It's being in attack mode and confidence. I'm in full out attack mode all the time."
New Jersey built a double-digit lead with a 14-0 run in the second quarter, taking a 45-30 advantage with 6:54 remaining behind eight points from reserve Keyon Dooling.
Atlanta struggled from the field to start the quarter, missing seven of its first eight shots.
But Murray helped Atlanta get back into this one, igniting a 10-0 run with four points and an assist to draw the Hawks to 47-44 with 2:16 remaining in the second.
NEW JERSEY 119
ATLANTA 107 FINAL
Nov 15 9:34 PM
NEW JERSEY 110
ATLANTA 85 FINAL
Nov 15 9:14 PM
NEW JERSEY 85
ATLANTA 73 END, 3RD QTR
Nov 15 8:53 PM
NEW JERSEY 55
ATLANTA 50 HALFTIME
Nov 15 8:13 PM
NEW JERSEY 24
ATLANTA 22 END, 1ST QTR
Nov 15 7:33 PM
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