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 Williams, Hawks rally to beat Bobcats 102-97

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Join date : 2008-11-21

PostSubject: Williams, Hawks rally to beat Bobcats 102-97   Sat Feb 07, 2009 6:42 pm

CHARLOTTE, N.C.(AP) Moments after scoring 29
points and keying Atlanta's comeback win by constantly getting fouled
and making free throws, Marvin Williams was propped up on a training
table and hooked up to an IV.Picking up the scoring slack from sick All-Star Joe Johnson can take a lot of out of you.Williams
overcame cramps that once left him sprawled on the floor in agony to
hit 18 of 20 free throws Friday night, spearheading the Hawks' comeback
from a 17-point deficit in their 102-97 victory over the undermanned
Charlotte Bobcats.With Williams unable to talk to reporters, his
teammates were left to discuss the significance of beating Minnesota
and Charlotte without Johnson, their top scorer who remained in Atlanta
with flulike symptoms."We played two teams that have been
playing pretty well,'' said Maurice Evans, who added 17 points while
starting for Johnson. "For us to get these wins without Joe and allow
him to get back healthy, now we can go home and build momentum going
into the All-Star break.''Raja Bell scored 17 points for
Charlotte, but was lost late in the third quarter to a groin injury.
Charlotte was also without top scorer Gerald Wallace for a fourth
straight game.With guard D.J. Augustin struggling in his return
from abdominal injury, coach Larry Brown turned to an unusual lineup
that included little-used Shannon Brown in the final minute.Brown
then threw away an inbounds pass to Josh Smith with Charlotte trailing
by three. Facing the same deficit in the closing seconds, Brown drove
to the basket and had his shot swatted by Smith.Mike Bibby hit
two clinching free throws with 2 seconds left to snap Atlanta's
five-game losing streak in Charlotte despite getting only five points
and four rebounds from Al Horford in his second game back from a knee
injury."Marvin took over for us,'' Horford said. "He really was aggressive going to the rim and getting fouled.''The parade to the free-throw line didn't sit well with Larry Brown, who sarcastically referred to Williams as LeBron James."It's
tough when you play against LeBron and they keep putting him on the
line,'' Brown said. "Every time we play LeBron and Kobe (Bryant) and
people like that, they shoot 20 free throws. It's tough. I'm just being
facetious there.''Emeka Okafor had 15 points and 19 rebounds and
Raymond Felton added 15 points, eight rebounds and eight assists for
the Bobcats, but couldn't stop Atlanta's 35-22 onslaught in the third
quarter that turned the game around.Atlanta built its lead to
94-86 lead on Williams' two free throws with 4:20 left - after Williams
was treated on the floor for a cramp.Charlotte, in its first
home game in two weeks following a 1-4 West Coast trip, committed just
one turnover in a crisp first half that produced as much as a 17-point
lead and produced an unlikely offensive threat.Cartier Martin,
whom Brown announced before the game will be signed to a second 10-day
contract, scored 10 points in less than 4 minutes early in the second
quarter while replacing the ineffective Adam Morrison at Wallace's
small forward spot."Just getting comfortable and playing
basketball. It's what I love to do,'' Martin said. "I've been here for
a good 10 days with them and I've got a feel for them. I think they've
got a feel for me.''But with Wallace watching from the bench as
he recovers from a partially collapsed lung and broken rib, the Bobcats
allowed the short-handed Hawks to come back.Williams was the
difference. While he made only five of 15 shots from the field, he
continually got to the line. He added seven rebounds in 41 minutes."They
were getting fouled and stopping the clock. They kept eating away at
the lead,'' Felton said. "When they took the lead, it just kind of went
downhill from there.''Notes: Bell was scheduled to undergo
treatment Saturday. It was uncertain if he'll miss any time. ... Hawks
coach Mike Woodson held out hope Johnson would play Saturday against
the Los Angeles Clippers. ... Bobcats F Juwan Howard (toe) did not
dress, allowing for the rare sight of F Sean May in uniform. May, still
8 pounds shy of coach Larry Brown's demand of 260, did not play. ...
Bobcats owner Bob Johnson addressed the crowd before the game, saying
he believes the team is heading in the right direction.

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