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Millsap shines as Hawks overpower Heat

Paul-Millsap-150228-Shoots-AI-300Hawks 93, Heat 91

The Atlanta Hawks opted to rest four players, including two All-Stars, but were still strong enough to defeat the Miami Heat 93-91 on Saturday.

Coach Mike Budenholzer benched All-Star point guard Jeff Teague, starting small forward DeMarre Carroll, All-Star centre Al Horford and reserve power forward Pero Antic.

Still, Paul Millsap scored 10 of his 22 points in the fourth and the Hawks (47-12), who have the best record in the Eastern Conference, won their fourth straight game.

Centre Hassan Whiteside had 14 points and an equal career-best 24 rebounds for Miami (25-33), who also got 22 points from guard Dwyane Wade.

Wizards 99, Pistons 95

John Wall scored 22 points and Nene had 21 as the Washington Wizards snapped a six-game losing streak with a victory over the Detroit Pistons.

Marcin Gortat had 16 points and 17 rebounds for the Wizards (34-26), who had lost five in a row following the All-Star break and 11-of-13 since January 28.

Fortified with the return of guard Bradley Beal (right leg stress reaction) and forward Paul Pierce to the starting line-up, Washington dominated the first half and led by 68-47 but the Pistons rallied to move ahead in the fourth.

The Wizards prevailed down the stretch to hand the Pistons (23-36) a third straight loss.

Grizzlies 101, Timberwolves 97

Marc Gasol led all scorers with 27 points, including 11 in the fourth quarter, as the Memphis Grizzlies rallied to beat the Minnesota Timberwolves and win for the first time in three games.

Mike Conley added 11 points for Memphis (42-16), which trailed by five with just over eight minutes to play before silencing the sellout crowd.

Andrew Wiggins scored 25 points for Minnesota, which has now lost two in a row. It was the 19th game with 20 points or more for the rookie from Kansas.

Kevin Garnett received his second technical foul in the third quarter and was ejected.

Knicks 103, Raptors 98

The New York Knicks won for the second time in as many nights, turning back the Atlantic Division-leading Toronto Raptors.

Tim Hardaway Jr led the Knicks (12-46) with 22 points. Centre Andrea Bargnani scored 19 points against his former team.

Lou Williams came off the bench to score 22 points for the Raptors (37-22), who have dropped a season-high five straight games.

Toronto’s leading scorer, point guard Kyle Lowry, took a game off for the first time this season due to fatigue and nagging injuries.

Spurs 101, Suns 74

Kawhi Leonard scored 22 points and the San Antonio Spurs held the Phoenix Suns to the lowest-scoring first half in franchise history on the way to an easy win.

Aron Baynes, Danny Green and Boris Diaw all added 12 points for the Spurs, who led by as many as 34 points and ended their nine-game “Rodeo Road Trip” at 4-5 with back-to-back wins in Sacramento and Phoenix.

Markieff Morris had 19 points for Phoenix, who scored just 24 points in the first half. It was the lowest scoring half in the 47-year history of the franchise, eclipsing a 25-point second half in a 100-89 loss to the Sacramento Kings in 2001.

Nets 104, Mavericks 94

Deron Williams scored 25 points that included a season-high four three-pointers in a victory over Dallas.

Brooklyn (24-33) desperately needed the victory in their last of eight consecutive road games, and after playing so well at Houston on Friday only to allow the Rockets to steal it late.

Dallas (39-22), playing without injured starters Tyson Chandler and Chandler Parsons, have lost consecutive games.

Dirk Nowitzki finished with 20 points for the Mavericks.

Jazz 82, Bucks 75

Reserve guard Trey Burke sparked the Utah Jazz to a hard-fought win over the Milwaukee Bucks in a defensive battle.

Burke scored a game-high 23 points with six assists and three rebounds to help the Jazz improve to 23-35.

The Bucks (32-27) only shot 39.2 percent while falling for the second night in a row to begin a four-game road trip.

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