ATLANTA, Nov. 18 (Ticker) -- Shareef Abdur-Rahim
scored 27 points on 12-of-15 shooting and Alan Henderson
and Dion Glover
added 14 apiece off the bench as the Atlanta Hawks never were threatened in a 117-92 rout of the undermanned Toronto Raptors.
NBA TV highlights from|
Abdur-Rahim scored 15 points in the first quarter, which Atlanta finished on a 12-2 run to open a 33-22 lead.
The Hawks outscored Toronto 33-15 in the second to increase their advantage at halftime to 66-37. They easily ended their
losing skid against the Raptors at six games.
"Shareef really established himself early. He created good looks for everyone else," Hawks coach Lon Kruger said. "The end
of the first quarter, beginning of the second, kind of set the tone of the game."
Atlanta converted 13 first-half turnovers by Toronto into 25 points en route to improving to 4-0 at Philips Arena this
The last time the Hawks started 4-0 at home was the 1997-98 season, when the team opened 7-0 at home and 11-0 overall under current Raptors coach Lenny Wilkens.
Morris Peterson, Alvin Williams and Voshon Lenard had 17 points apiece for the Raptors, who were able to dress only nine men and fell to 3-4 without superstar Vince Carter.
"We didn't have a lot of guys, so we have to play with who we have," Peterson said. "We lost tonight because we got
outplayed. They went at us, they got some easy baskets and they didn't miss. The first half, that's what got us."
While Carter remained sidelined with a strained left quadriceps, Nate Huffman and Lindsey Hunter still were hobbled by sore
right knees and Mamadou N'diaye did not dress due to a stress fracture in his right heel.
"It was one of those games you want to forget about as soon as it is over," Lenard said. "Anytime a team is shooting 70
percent (in the first quarter), it's going to be tough to beat them. I thought we were a little lackadaisical, especially in
the second quarter. We let them have things easy."
The Hawks' leading scorer a year ago, Abdur-Rahim continued his red-hot shooting. The veteran forward hit at least 50
percent from the floor for the sixth time in his last seven games.
"I'm scoring and everything is clicking to me," Abdur-Rahim said. "I'm playing to win, I'm not playing to score. The
baskets are coming to me. It's easy that way."
Atlanta shredded Toronto's interior defense, recording eight dunks and seven layups in the first half and outscoring the
Raptors in the paint, 38-8.
Abdur-Rahim recorded his fourth dunk with just five seconds left in the opening quarter before Jason Terry capped Atlanta's outburst with a pair of free throws.
"He's just a beast inside," Terry said of Abdur-Rahim. "We got to go inside to him early and let him pound in on the other
team's big man."