Notebook: Hawks 112, Pacers 91



Posted Apr 29, 2013 11:55 PM

Matt Winkeljohn, for NBA.com

THE FACTS: The Hawks' Gatling gun that shoots T-shirts into the crowd wasn't working well Monday, but Josh Smith, Kyle Korver and Anthony Tolliver were firing away and their combined 10 3-pointers -- four in the final period -- pushed Atlanta past visiting Pacers 102-91.

The Hawks evened the series 2-2 as Smith had a career playoff-high 29 points and 11 rebounds. A couple of his four assists to Korver for late treys were large as the Hawks went up big and then blunted a Pacers' rally for their 13th straight win over Indiana in Philips Arena.

Korver had 19 points off Atlanta's bench, and Al Horford scored 18.

Paul George had 14 of his 21 points in the fourth quarter for the Pacers, who pulled within four points in the third and within five twice in the fourth despite trailing by 19 late in the first half. He also had a game-high 12 rebounds.

The Hawks led 57-40 at halftime after a 35-point second quarter, but were dumbfounded in the third quarter by Indiana's zone defense.

After shooting 55 percent in the first half, Atlanta was just 3-for-20 in the third quarter, and Smith missed half his 12 free throws and all six of his shots in the period as the Hawks managed just 12 points in the third.

As Atlanta missed three of its first four free throws and its first two shots in the fourth quarter, the Pacers pulled as close as 70-65 when David West hit a short jumper with 9:47 remaining.

The Hawks, though, were saving up a few more long balls.

Tolliver (nine points) hit all three of his trey tries, including his third with 8:55 left for an 85-75 lead. Two of Korver's five 3-pointers came in the game's final 5:33, both off passes out of the paint from Smith.

Smith's second trey, with 3:08 left in the game, gave Atlanta an 89-81 lead, and on Atlanta's next possession, he grabbed an offensive rebound and fired out to Korver for his final 3-pointer. That was good for a 92-83 lead with 2:33 left in the game.

After the slow start to the fourth quarter from the free throw line, the Hawks shot 12-for-14 from the line, with Horford going 6-for-8 and Jeff Teague (13 points) going 5-for-6 in the period. Atlanta's last six points came from the charity stripe.

Every Indiana started scored in double digits, but West (15 points) was 5-for-14, and George Hill (12) was 4-for-15.

QUOTABLE: "Energy and effort . . . if we play with those things and play together, we're a pretty good basketball team . . . we contested pretty much every jump shot they took. That's what it will take for us to compete in their arena."
-- Smith.

THE STAT: 2.67-1.14 -- Each team scored 16 second-chance points, but the Hawks were far more efficient in getting theirs -- with help at the free throw line. Atlanta was 4-for-6 on second-chance shots (or 2.67 points per second-chance shot taken) to Indiana's 7-for-14 (1.14). This does not take into account, of course, free throws earned on second-chance shots.

TURNING POINT: The Hawks trailed 21-14 in the first quarter when they scored the final eight points of the period, and started the second quarter with an 14-3 spurt for a 36-24 lead. Of Atlanta's 22 points, six came on a pair of Tolliver treys and three more on a Korver bomb, and 11 at the rim or on free throws.

From the point where Indiana led 21-14, the Pacers were outscored 43-19 over the remainder of the first half.

QUOTABLE II: "You're not going to win on another team's floor when you have a 35-19 quarter. [Smith]'s getting the boards, he's shooting 3's, and he's making shots. He's being active and getting to the free throw line. He's just playing with a lot more energy."
-- Paul George.

HOT: Korver (5-for-8) and Tolliver (3-for-3) made the Hawks's reserves a combined 8-for-11 on 3-pointers. Indiana was 7-for-23 as a team. Tolliver is 6-for-8 on treys in the series. . . . Smith had 16 points and six rebounds in the first half. . . . Hill (10-for-11) and George (34-for-41) are a combined 44-for-52 from the free throw line in this series (84.6 percent).

QUOTABLE III: "Tolliver and Korver really lit us up . . . it's tough (when they spread us out), but we had a couple of break downs, especially on second shots."
-- Pacers coach Frank Vogel.

NOT: Hill averaged 20 points on 63.6 percent shooting (14-for-22, including 7-for-11 on 3-pointers) in the first two games -- at home. He was 4-for-15 Monday and went 5-for-23 (21.7 percent) in the past two games, including 0-for-9 on 3-pointers. . . . Atlanta's Devin Harris was 1-for-6 on 3-pointers, and is 3-for-15 in the series. . . . Smith is just 12-for-25 from the free throw line in this postseason. Horford is 11-for-19, and Harris is 8-for-15.

QUOTABLE IV: "The road is somewhere we're still learning to get wins, and learning to play together, but at home we're very comfortable."

-- George.

GOOD MOVE: Drew's decision to go with the same lineup he started in Games 1 and 2, with Korver at small forward, Smith at power forward and Horford at center, loosened up an Atlanta offense that had gone stale. Korver came up big off the bench, and the Hawks were at their best offensively when able to spread the floor rather than when they played big. . . .

Vogel's decision to go zone for much of the third quarter thwarted much of what Atlanta had success with in the second quarter -- chiefly getting to the rim for a scoring chance, or pounding the ball inside to set up a kick-out for a trey.

BAD MOVE: Drew's decision to go with that lineup may have helped the Pacers keep pace because it meant Smith -- who has done fine work defensively throughout the series -- was defending West rather than George.

Instead of letting Korver struggle to defend George -- who averaged 25 points in the first two games of the series -- the Pacers' leading scorer was marked chiefly by Harris. That was tough on Harris, as George shot 3-for-6 (including 2-for-5 on 3-pointers) and got to the line, where he was 6-for-8.

IN THE ARENA: Atlanta mayor Kasim Reed was at the game. . . . Rapper 2 Chainz, an Atlantan known by family and some friends as Taheed Epps, was in the house.

NOTABLE: Johan Petro did not show up at Philips Arena until about 90 minutes before the game. He was in Miami, where his wife, Vanessa, gave birth earlier to the couple's first child: Jacob. He returned to Atlanta in a private jet sent by a member of the Hawks' ownership group. . . . Korver, who started Games 1 and 2 at small forward for the Hawks before going to the bench, started the second half Monday at shooting guard. Harris was being treated for dehydration at the time, and returned to action with 5:10 left in the third quarter. He replaced Teague.

UP NEXT: Game 5 Wednesday @ Indiana, Game 6 Friday @ Atlanta.