Millsap, Hawks snap Thunder’s 4-game run
ATLANTA — Paul Millsap scored 26 points and Jeff Teague made all the big shots down the stretch, sending the Atlanta Hawks to a 106-100 victory that snapped Oklahoma City’s four-game winning streak Monday night.
Russell Westbrook had 34 points, including a drive with 2:49 remaining that gave the Thunder their first lead since scoring the opening basket. Westbrook knocked down a jumper to push Oklahoma City to a four-point lead.
Teague took control from there. The point guard darted into the lane for a basket that thwarted the Thunder’s run, Millsap hit a pair of free throws to tie it, and Teague scored on another dash to the rim to put Atlanta ahead for good, 98-96, with 1:09 left.
The Hawks made a big stop on Westbrook, as Kent Bazemore forced a pass that was stolen by Thabo Sefolosha.
Atlanta pulled away from there.
Teague finished with 25 points, while Al Horford added 21 points, 13 rebounds and closed out the game with a dunk.
Kevin Durant, selected Western Conference player of the week after coming back from a left hamstring injury, had 25 points. But the
Thunder lost for the first time since he rejoined the lineup.
It was Westbrook who carried the Thunder. He also grabbed 11 rebounds and dished out seven assists.
The Hawks shot nearly 57 percent in the opening quarter and clamped down defensively on the Thunder, who went 8 of 22 from the field (36 percent). Atlanta led by as many as 13 and was up 31-21 at the end of the period.
But Oklahoma City got rolling in the final 3 minutes of the second, closing on an 18-3 run that nearly erased Atlanta’s biggest lead, 50-34.
Westbrook drove for a layup that left the crowd gasping, and Anthony Morrow capped off the spurt with a 3-pointer.
After controlling most of the half, the Hawks went to locker room up just 53-52, having made only one of their last seven shots, with four turnovers mixed into the dry spell.
Thunder: Andre Roberson picked up a technical from the bench for griping about a non-call in the second quarter. After Morrow missed a 3 in the corner, and didn’t get a whistle on apparent contact, Roberson barked out something from the bench. Referee Leroy Richardson whipped around and hit the player with a technical. … When Durant checked back into the game in the fourth quarter, Atlanta coach Mike Budenholzer was barking at the officials. “What’s up, Bud?” Durant shouted with a sly grin. Budenholzer broke into a big smile. … Serge Ibaka had 17 points. … Ibaka and Durant both had four blocks.
Hawks: Sefolosha started for the fifth time in the last six games at small forward, leaving former starter Bazemore in a bench role. Bazemore has started only one of three games since coming back from an ankle injury, but both were on the court for the defensive stand in the closing seconds. … Sefolosha failed to score, missing all five of his shots. Bazemore had seven points. … The Hawks outrebounded the Thunder 51-48. Millsap pulled down 11 boards.
Thunder: Travel to Miami on Thursday to face the Heat.
Hawks: Host the Toronto Raptors on Wednesday.
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