Alec Burks makes most of first start as Knicks top Hawks | Inquirer Sports
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Alec Burks makes most of first start as Knicks top Hawks

/ 04:01 PM November 28, 2021
alec burks

Alec Burks #18 of the New York Knicks celebrates his three point shot in the fourth quarter against the Orlando Magic at Madison Square Garden on November 17, 2021 in New York City. Elsa/Getty Images/AFP

Alec Burks, making his first start of the season, scored 15 of his team-high 23 points to spark a decisive third-quarter run Saturday night as the visiting New York Knicks went on to defeat the Atlanta Hawks 99-90.

The 23 points were a season-high for Burks, who started because Kemba Walker sat out the second game of a back-to-back set.

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Evan Fournier finished with 20 points, RJ Barrett added 15 and Obi Toppin netted 13 points off the bench for the Knicks, who have alternated wins and losses over the last seven games.

Trae Young scored 33 points and Clint Capela had 16 points and a season-high 21 rebounds for the Hawks, whose seven-game winning streak was snapped. John Collins added 12 points.

The Knicks trailed by as many as five before ending the first quarter with a 28-27 lead.

After Danilo Gallinari opened the second quarter with a 3-pointer to put the Hawks back on top, Toppin scored five straight points in a 9-0 New York run to start a bigger 19-7 burst. It was capped Burks drained a jumper to extend the lead to double digits (47-37) for the first time.

The Knicks led by 10 twice more before Young scored the final eight points of the half as the Hawks pulled within 51-50.

Young drained a 3-pointer to begin the second half and Capela converted back-to-back alley-oops to complete what turned out to be a 16-0 run that bridge the halves and give Atlanta its biggest lead at 57-51.

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Fournier hit a 3-pointer out of a Knicks timeout to spark a quarter-ending 34-17 run. Along the way, Young scored five straight to cut the deficit to 71-69 before Burks scored 12 straight points — on three 3-pointers and a trio of free throws — over a span of 96 seconds and Julius Randle hit a driving layup at the buzzer to extend the lead to 85-74.

The Knicks twice led by 14 in the fourth before both teams — playing for the second time in as many nights — looked gassed down the stretch. New York missed its final 10 shots from the field but the Hawks missed six straight shots after a Capela dunk with 5:08 left and got no closer than nine points.

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