Nets Stop Hawks, Extend Streak to Eight
New Jersey 99, Atlanta 91
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J., Dec. 30 (Ticker) -- Another dominant performance by superstar Vince Carter kept the New Jersey Nets winning.
Carter scored 37 points and Jason Kidd and Richard Jefferson added 21 apiece as the Nets extended their winning streak to eight games with a 99-91 victory over the Atlanta Hawks.
Al Harrington scored eight during the stretch and Joe Johnson buried a pair of 3-pointers as Atlanta extended its lead to 61-56 with 6:16 left in the third.
A 3-pointer by Harrington gave the Hawks a slim lead at 84-81 with 5:51 remaining, but the Nets scored the next six points, capped by Carter's layup, to take the lead for good.
"We played well for three quarters and then the fourth kind of caught up to us," Hawks coach Mike Woodson said.
New Jersey shot 57 percent (16-of-28), including 5-of-9 from 3-point range and Carter was 8-of-12 from the floor and 3-of-4 from the arc in the final period.
"In the last six minutes of the game as a team we're trying to out-execute the opponent," Carter said. "I just tried to be more aggressive and put pressure on the guy or guys that are guarding me."
Jefferson missed two free throws with 2:35 remaining but redeemed himself on the next possession, burying a 3-pointer from the left wing with 1:52 left.
"Some days you can't hit shots, some days you hit every shot," Jefferson said. "You just have to keep your confidence and have faith in your teammates and good things will happen."
Tyronn Lue's three-point play brought Atlanta within 94-91 with just under one minute remaining but Jacque Vaughn nailed a jumper and Carter sank a pair of free throws to seal the victory.
Clifford Robinson scored nine points and Kidd added nine assists for New Jersey, which made 11-of-22 shots from the arc.
Harrington scored 26 points and Joe Johnson 20 for the Hawks, who dropped to 2-14 on the road. Lue added 18 points off the bench on 6-of-15 shooting.
"We just have to know we can play with these very good teams," said Harrington, who made 9-of-16 shots. "We're right there, I really feel that way. We just have to continue to play with the effort we're playing with."
"I don't have any complaints. They play hard and we've been in every game we've played this year," Woodson said. "We just continue to have lapses in the fourth quarter. They're a pretty seasoned team and playing well right now."
The Hawks have lost their last four meetings with the Nets and are winless in their last eight trips to New Jersey dating to Dec. 26, 2000.