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News » Atlanta Hawks Getting Inside 2008-12-17


Atlanta Hawks Getting Inside 2008-12-17


Atlanta Hawks Getting Inside 2008-12-17
The Hawks have played well both at home and on the road this season.

But there's no doubt they're thrilled to be on their home floor for their current eight-game homestand, particularly for Wednesday's game against Boston, the team against which the Hawks started their current stretch of success on their home floor.

Dating to last season's playoff series, the Hawks have lost just once at Philips Arena, winning 12 of their last 13 to turn their arena into no one wants to play in.

"It's a lot easier to play at home than it is on the road," Joe Johnson said. "You save yourself the travel. That's one of the biggest things. And you get to sleep in your own bed, man. That makes a world of difference. I think we'll definitely be ready and prepared.

"We just have to keep working and take care of home court, because we've got to win all these (home) games."

You'll have to forgive Johnson for being a bit greedy. But the Hawks are 9-1 at home this season; the only loss was a 119-107 setback to New Jersey on Nov. 15 on the back end of a road-home back-to-back.

So when the Hawks talk about winning regularly at home, it's not nearly as farfetched as it might sound.

"It is a tough stretch of games we have coming up, but we're glad to be home," Al Horford said. "We just feel confident at home. We need that fan support behind us. I think that makes the biggest difference. When fans get into the game, that gets in other teams' heads.

"When we're on the road and the home team makes a run, we're always like, 'Uh oh, we got to get our stuff together.' The fans, I'd say, are the biggest part."

The Hawks have played to sellout crowds three times already this season, and they can expect at least one more Wednesday night.

HAWKS 83, BOBCATS 79: One way or another, the Hawks keep finding ways to win on their home floor.

They overcame their own awful shooting performance from deep for the latest, an ugly win over Southeast Division rival Charlotte.

"It doesn't matter how we do it," Hawks point guard Mike Bibby said. "As long as we win."

The Hawks won their third straight home game and 12th in 13 tries dating to last season's playoff series against Boston, the team they'll play host to Wednesday night.

"Sometimes you're going to have games like this that are ugly," Hawks coach Mike Woodson said. "(Charlotte coach) Larry (Brown's) teams always defend and get after you. I thought they did a great job in the first of getting after us, and then we kind of returned the favor in the second half and made things happen our way."

The Hawks didn't take a lead until Al Horford scored on a put-back for a 70-68 lead with 11:11 to play in the game.

The Hawks never trailed again, but they had to fend off a charge from the Bobcats until the final buzzer. Joe Johnson's fade-away baseline jumper over Emeka Okafor with 24.6 seconds to play was the final dagger in an impressive comeback win.

"We have a tendency to make things harder than they have to be," Johnson said after his 28-point, eight-assist, five-rebound night. "This is a game we should have won going away. But we always seem to make it harder on ourselves."


Author: Fox Sports
Author's Website: http://www.foxsports.com
Added: December 17, 2008

 

 
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