Final

Regular Season Series (Game 2 of 4)

Series starts 1/18

Game 1: Wednesday, January 18th
Pistons117Final
Hawks89
Game 2: Tuesday, February 7th
Pistons98Final
Hawks99
Game 3: Tuesday, February 21st
Hawks87Final
Pistons97
Game 4: Monday, March 20th
Hawks84Final
Pistons91

Pistons 98

(39-8, 18-6 away)

Hawks 99

(15-32, 11-14 home)

Coverage: FSS

7:00 PM ET, February 7, 2006

Philips Arena, Atlanta, GA

1 2 3 4 T
DET 34 26 21 1798
ATL 24 33 20 2299

Top Performers

Detroit: T. Prince 29 Pts, 4 Reb, 1 Stl, 2 Blk

Atlanta: J. Johnson 29 Pts, 3 Reb, 5 Ast, 2 Stl

Layup lifts Hawks, who hand Pistons first losing streak

ATLANTA (AP) -- Joe Johnson delivered big in the final seconds for the Atlanta Hawks for the second time in three games.

Johnson hit a running layup with 7.5 seconds left to help the Hawks beat the Detroit Pistons 99-98 on Tuesday night.

"Those are the moments I grew up dreaming about when I was playing in my front yard," Johnson said.

The Hawks kept the Pistons from becoming the first NBA team with 40 wins. Detroit, which lost at Indiana on Saturday night, has lost back-to-back games for the first time this season.

Detroit (39-8) still boasts the best record in the league.

"You always dream you're going against the team with the best record," Johnson said.

On Friday night, Johnson sank a jumper with less than a second left to give the Hawks a 96-94 win over Orlando.

"Joe is really a clutch performer," said Hawks forward Josh Smith. "We knew he would give us a lift."

Johnson led the Hawks with 29 points.

"We had control of the game," said Detroit's Ben Wallace. "We didn't really play with the heart and desire that we usually play with. We didn't come out and impose our will on this team.

"We look to come out and win every game but you know, strange things happen in this league. Some nights it doesn't go for you."

Trailing 98-97, Atlanta (15-32) had possession with 26.7 seconds left. Johnson worked the clock down before driving past Rasheed Wallace for the layup off the glass.

Following a time-out, Richard Hamilton missed a short jumper over Johnson. The Pistons had one final possession but couldn't get off a shot after inbounding the ball with one-tenth of a second left.

"They made plays. We didn't," said Pistons coach Flip Saunders. "As I told our guys, I haven't thought over the last week that we've been very sharp. We've let teams hang around. Guys are tired or whatever, but we're not playing with that zip, with that sense of urgency."

Zaza Pachulia added 16 points and Al Harrington had 14 for Atlanta, which has won four of five games.

Tayshaun Prince had eight of Detroit's final 10 points to lead the Pistons with 29 points. Chauncey Billups added 20 and Hamilton had 16.

Atlanta survived Detroit's best punch early. Even with Detroit shooting 63.2 percent from the field in the first half, the Hawks stayed close, trailing only 60-57 at halftime as Johnson had 18 points.

In Detroit's 117-89 win at Atlanta on Jan. 19, the Pistons led by 31 points in the third quarter, but this time the Hawks wouldn't fade.

"The first time we played them, we came out tentative, knowing they were the best team in the league," Johnson said. "Tonight we came out with some pride and dignity."

Detroit led 81-77 after three quarters and a basket by Josh Childress pulled Atlanta to within two points early in the final period.

Johnson's jumper from the corner gave Atlanta an 89-87 lead with 5:55 left -- the Hawks' first lead since scoring the first two points of the game.

"We have had a lot of close games that we just didn't make plays down the stretch, but we refused to lose tonight," said Hawks coach Mike Woodson.

The Hawks were without point guard Tyronn Lue, who suffered a sprained medial collateral ligament in his right knee in Monday's practice. Lue is expected to miss four to six weeks.

Game notes


Detroit activated G Lindsey Hunter from the inactive list for the game, and Hunter saw his first action of the season. He had arthroscopic surgery on his left ankle on Oct. 5. The Pistons placed rookie F Jason Maxiell on the inactive list. ... Woodson said the team likely will make at least one roster move Wednesday to compensate for the loss of Lue. Woodson said the team may recall guard Donta Smith from Arkansas of the NBADL or look elsewhere for backcourt help.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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Team Stat Comparison

 
DET
ATL
Points 98 99
FGM-FGA 33-71 (.465) 41-83 (.494)
3PM-3PA 4-14 (.286) 5-12 (.417)
FTM-FTA 28-33 (.848) 12-14 (.857)
Rebounds (Offensive-Total) 9-30 13-39
Assists 21 22
Turnovers 11 14
Steals 5 3
Blocks 7 2
Fast Break Points 4 8
Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 19 (1/0) 25 (2/0)
Largest Lead 10 2

Top Performers

Detroit
Atlanta
Tayshaun Prince Prince
Points: 29
Reb: 4
Ast: 0
Stl: 1
Blk: 2
Joe Johnson Johnson
Points: 29
Reb: 3
Ast: 5
Stl: 2
Blk: 0