Hawks jump out early, soar past WizardsFeb 11, 2009 - 5:01 AM ATLANTA (Ticker) -- Joe Johnson scored 22 points to lead the Atlanta Hawks to a 111-90 victory over the Washington Wizards on Tuesday.
The Hawks used a 7-0 run in the first quarter to grab a 24-17 lead and extended their advantage to 53-37 at the break.
Johnson scored 15 of his points in the first half. The teams played on pretty much even terms in the second half, but the Hawks had essentially put the game out of reach by outscoring the Wizards, 29-20, in the second quarter.
"Tonight was a total team effort," Atlanta coach Mike Woodson said. "We haven't had a lot of games this season where we had the opportunity to rest our starters. It's nice from a coaching standpoint to rest the starters and give some minutes to the bench.
Caron Butler scored 22 points for the Wizards.
The Hawks welcomed Mike Bibby back to the lineup, and it made a difference right away. Bibby, who entered Tuesday averaging 16.1 points and 5.4 assists, missed Saturday's 121-97 loss to the Los Angeles Clippers with a sprained left foot suffered during Friday's 102-97 victory over the Charlotte Bobcats.
Atlanta jumped on top early with a 9-1 run that Bibby capped with a jumper from the top of the key. A 7-0 run later in the quarter made it 24-13.
"He's a big part of what we have done and what we do," Woodson said of Bibby. "He was one of the main reasons we were able to push into the playoffs (last year). I think the guys like playing with him. He makes things happen on the floor by scoring the basketball, and passes to the open guys when needed. In that regard, it's very good to have him on the floor."
The Hawks led by as many as 22 in the second quarter and kept the Wizards easily in check the rest of the way.
"We made some early buckets and that pretty much allowed us to have control of the game," Johnson said. "With Mike Bibby coming back, that helped us a lot. He pretty much controls the offense and makes the defense play honest. He opens up the floor so much by making the shots when we need them."
Bibby finished with 12 points, four rebounds and six assists and Flip Murray added 16 points off the bench for Atlanta.
JaVale McGee scored 18 points off the bench and Antawn Jamison added 17 for Washington.
"I don't know if you want to call tonight basketball for us. We just didn't play smart at all," Jamison said. "Coach would run plays for us and we would do the total opposite. We kept trying to do things our own instead of playing the right way. Eventually, we will understand what it takes to be a successful team or be able to put yourself in position to win games."
ATLANTA 111 FINAL
Feb 10 9:22 PM
NBA WASHINGTON 61
ATLANTA 77 END, 3RD QTR
Feb 10 8:57 PM
ATLANTA 77 END, 3RD QTR
Feb 10 8:51 PM
ATLANTA 53 HALFTIME
Feb 10 8:06 PM
ATLANTA 26 END, 1ST QTR
Feb 10 7:34 PM
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