Porzingis scores 30, Knicks hold off Hawks
NEW YORK — Kristaps Porzingis scored 30 points, Doug McDermott added 23 off the bench and the New York Knicks withstood a late push from the Atlanta Hawks for a 111-107 victory Sunday night.
One night after losing to the NBA-worst Chicago Bulls on the road, New York managed to hold off a fourth-quarter rally by the Hawks, who have the second-worst record in the league.
The Knicks appeared to have the game put away after three straight points from Jarrett Jack and Porzingis gave them a 101-92 lead with 3:46 left.
The Hawks then scored five consecutive points, including three free throws from Marco Belinelli to make it 103-100 with 1:40 remaining. Porzingis answered with a quick basket at the other end to extend the Knicks’ lead 105-100 before Ersan Ilyasova’s layup drew Atlanta within three with 1:18 to play.
New York made it interesting once again when Jack was able to hit only one of two from the free throw line, making it 109-106 with seven seconds left. Kent Bazemore was fouled with three seconds to go. After making the first free throw, he purposely missed the second one, but Porzingis sealed it with two free throws of his own.
Jack scored 19 points for a Knicks team that had lost six of eight, including a 116-104 defeat at Atlanta on Nov. 30.
Dennis Schroder had 21 points and Ilyasova added 20 for the Hawks, who are 3-11 on the road. Taurean Prince had 17 points and eight rebounds.
The Hawks led 75-71 after Miles Plumlee’s jumper with 1:28 left in the third quarter.
Porzingis answered with a pair of free throws that sparked an 11-0 run during a four-minute span. It ended with two free throws from Lance Thomas that increased New York’s lead to 82-75 with 10:33 remaining in the fourth.
Atlanta missed six shots and committed two turnovers during that stretch before Schroder’s layup with 9:53 left. The Hawks outscored the Knicks 7-2 to cut the margin to 84-82 with 9:04 to go.
Hawks: Rookie power forward John Collins, who has been out due to a left shoulder strain sustained on Nov. 30, worked out before the game at Madison Square Garden. The 20-year-old first-round pick from Wake Forest was averaging 11.5 points and 7.1 rebounds and had started four straight games before going down with the injury.
Knicks: Porzingis had eight rebounds.
ON SECOND THOUGHT
The Hawks are winless in the second game of a back-to-back, going 0-6 so far this season. Atlanta has eight more sets of back-to-back games on its schedule.
Hawks: At the Cleveland Cavaliers on Tuesday.
Knicks: Host the Los Angeles Lakers on Tuesday.
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