Hawks top Magic again
Published: Tuesday, January 30, 2007 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Tuesday, January 30, 2007 at 12:00 a.m.
ATLANTA — Joe Johnson's 13th 30-point game, and third in three wins this season against Orlando, left Atlanta coach Mike Woodson wondering how good his leading scorer would be if he played with the same point guard all the time.
Johnson scored 22 of his 34 points in the second half to help the Hawks answer a third-quarter challenge and beat the Magic 93-83 on Monday night.
Orlando lost its third straight, including two to Atlanta in four days. The Magic have lost eight of its last nine.
The Hawks won the season series against Orlando 3-1. Johnson scored 31, 39 and 34 points in the three wins and only 16 points in the one loss.
"That makes life easy — if he can do it every night," Woodson said. "He's our go-to guy and they key on him and he gets a lot of double- and triple-teams. Tonight he was able to beat a lot of them."
Woodson said the Hawks hope to have point guard Speedy Claxton return to practice today. Claxton has missed 10 straight games with a sore left knee.
Jameer Nelson scored 16 points for Orlando and Dwight Howard had 15 points and seven rebounds. Each starter played only 4 minutes, 53 seconds in the fourth quarter. Brian Hill played rookie J.J. Redick the full final quarter.
TIMBERWOLVES 121, SUNS 112
The hard-driving Suns finally hit a road block in Kevin Garnett.
Garnett almost single-handedly snapped the Suns' 17-game winning streak, scoring 44 points and grabbing 11 rebounds.
Garnett was everywhere in the final period, dropping turnaround jumper after turnaround jumper to give Phoenix its first loss of 2007.
Raja Bell scored 26 points and Steve Nash had 20 points and 18 assists for the Suns, who were looking to tie for the fourth-longest winning streak in NBA history.
BOBCATS 105, NUGGETS 101
Gerald Wallace scored 25 points and had a key block of Carmelo Anthony in the final minute of visiting Charlotte's win over Denver, which lost its third straight game.
With the Bobcats ahead 102-101, Anthony came down with the ball that was bobbled around following a miss by Adam Morrison and he darted down the court only to get rejected by Wallace.
Wallace then misfired at the other end, but Raymond Felton got the long rebound, was fouled by Anthony and sank both shots with 16 seconds left for a 104-101 lead.
HORNETS 103, TRAIL BLAZERS 91
David West had 21 points and 10 rebounds, and Jannero Pargo scored 12 straight points for the host Hornets in the fourth quarter.
Tyson Chandler had 14 points and 16 rebounds for his seventh double-double in the past 11 games for the Hornets, who have won their past six home games.
Zach Randolph led the Blazers with 20 points. Rookie Brandon Roy added 19 points.
GRIZZLIES 124, KINGS 117
Pau Gasol scored 34 points and ex-Gator Mike Miller added 27 to lead host Memphis.
Chucky Atkins came off the bench to score 22 points, including 13 in the final quarter, to help the Grizzlies win for only the third time in 10 games.
The Grizzlies shot 58.6 percent and outrebounded the Kings, 47-25. Gasol was 14-of-17 from the field and scored 12 points in the fourth quarter.
Mike Bibby led Sacramento with 23 points and Kevin Martin, the Kings' leading scorer, finished with 22.
ROCKETS 105, 76ERS 84
Tracy McGrady scored 25 points before sitting out the fourth quarter and Rafer Alston had nine of Houston's season-high 31 assists in a win over visiting Philadelphia.
Juwan Howard added 20 points, 10 rebounds and six assists as the Rockets held an opponent to 85 points or fewer for the third straight game.
Samuel Dalembert had 13 points and 11 rebounds and Andre Iguodala scored 19 points for Philadelphia, which had won three of its previous four games.
All-Star forward LeBron James said he'll consider sitting out Cleveland's next few games to rest his sore right big toe, which he injured on a recent road trip and aggravated during Sunday's game against Phoenix.
James was kept out of an eight-minute scrimmage, but was able to shoot, stretch and even threw around a football on the team's practice court.
James said a few days off would do his toe wonders.
"Right now, it's an injury where you go out there and keep reinjuring it," he said. "You've got to be smart and it's something I've really got to think about. ... Long term, it would be smart if I took some games off and some practices off, honestly, to get better."
Forward Carlos Boozer missed Utah's game against New Jersey with a bruised left knee.
Boozer, the Jazz's leading scorer and rebounder, injured his knee Saturday against the Hornets in a collision with Tyson Chandler.
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