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Final: Hawks 97, Celtics 92

Posted by Gary Washburn Globe Staff  April 20, 2012 07:15 PM

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Final: Hawks 97-92: Too much Joe Johnson and Josh Smith down the stretch but Atlanta coach Larry Drew was forced to reinsert the duo after the Celtics cut the lead to 4 in the final five minutes. Avery Bradley finished with a career-high 28 points.

Fourth quarter, 32.3, Hawks 94-88: It looks like the Hawks are going to hold on as Josh Smith tipped in his own miss following the Celtics missing two shots that could have cut the margin to 2. Joe Johnson has 30 points for Atlanta and Josh Smith with 19.

Fourth quarter, 2:07, Hawks 87-86: It's become exciting here at Philips Arena as the Celtics keep cutting the deficit to a point only to allow a big Atlanta bucket. Marquis Daniels has a season-high 12 points.

Fourth quarter, 5:44, Hawks 82-78: The Celtics have had numerous chances to go ahead and they just missed three shots on the previous possession only to watch Willie Green respond with a 3-pointer for a 4-point lead. The Celtics are playing harder and actually better than the Hawks, which have iced Joe Johnson and Josh Smith for the night apparently.

Fourth quarter, 8:27, Hawks 77-76: The Celtics are fighting and were a Marquis Daniels' 3-pointer from taking the lead but it rimmed out. Avery Bradley has a career-high 28 points while Keyon Dooling has 13. Those are the lone Celtics in double figures. Joe Johnson has 25 for Atlanta.

End of third quarter, Hawks 74-71: Celtics go on a 10-0 run near the end of the quarter to get within 1 point and now we have a real game entering the fourth quarter. It's the Avery Bradley show as he has scored a career-high 28 points on 12-for-20 shooting while eight other Celtics have scored, including rookie E'Twaun Moore with a key 3-pointer near the end of the quarter.

Third quarter, 2:41, Hawks 72-63: Avery Bradley has a career-high 26 points as he is carrying the Celtics in the third quarter. Keyon Dooling still has 10 points while Marquis Daniels has 7. Joe Johnson has 25 points while Josh Smith has 15. The Celtics are getting out-rebounded 31-18.

Third quarter, 8:34, Hawks 62-54: The Celtics sliced the deficit to 4 with the first 5 points of the half but Doc Rivers angrily called a timeout after two consecutive Atlanta baskets. Avery Bradley has 22 for the Celtics while Joe Johnson has 25 for Atlanta.

Halftime, Hawks 58-49: It's been a run-n-gun game so far, with neither team interested in playing defense. The difference is the Hawks are playing with an all-star in Joe Johnson, who leads all scorers with 23 points on 9-for-12 shooting and five assists. Josh Smith has 10 for Atlanta. Avery Bradley has 17 points on 8-for-13 shooting, 6 points short of tying his career high. Keyon Dooling has been solid with 10 points in a starting role.

Second quarter, 3:03, Hawks 52-42: The Celtics are hanging in there but they still can't stop the Hawks, who are shooting 66.7 percent and Joe Johnson already has 19 points. The Celtics are just trying to stay close and perhaps make a second-half run. Avery Bradley has 15 points.

Second quarter, 8:15, Hawks 38-31: If anything the Celtics are being competitive and beginning to play defense. They can't stop the Hawks big men but they are making a solid effort to stop the Hawks outside shooters. Avery Bradley has 12 points for Boston.

End of first quarter, Hawks 34-27: Defense is optional in this rag-tag game but the Celtics are hanging in thanks to 12 first-quarter points from Avery bradley and 59.1 percent shooting. The Hawks look as disheveled defensively as the Celtics but they are playing their regulars. Joe Johnson has 12 points and Josh Smith has 8.

First quarter, 1:38, Hawks 32-23: The Celtics aren't playing any defense and the Hawks have converted 13 of their first 19 shots and Jason Collins has 7 points. Joe Johnson leads Atlanta with 12 as the Hawks are just fastbreaking and getting easy layups. Avery Bradley has 10 for the Celtics and Keyon Dooling has 5.

First quarter, 7:22, Hawks 16-7: Celtics are playing against the Atlanta first team and they are looking ragged, allowing the Hawks to run off the last 6 points. Keyon Dooling has a 3-pointer in his starting role at shooting guard. Josh Smith has 6 points and Joe Johnson 5.

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