|Date of game: 12/30/2014
Recap: Atlanta vs. Cleveland
Atlanta, GA (SportsNetwork.com) - Paul Millsap's 26 points and nine rebounds helped the Atlanta Hawks take down the short-handed Cleveland Cavaliers, 109-101, on Tuesday.
Jeff Teague gave 23 points and 11 assists and Kyle Korver made five 3- pointers en route to 19 points for the Hawks, winners in seven of their last eight games.
"Pretty good, but we can't relax," said Millsap. "Still a lot of games left."
Cleveland's loss came despite 35 points and nine assists from Kyrie Irving, who had missed the previous two contests due to a bone bruise in his left knee. Tristan Thompson added 18 points and 13 boards for the Cavs, who were without LeBron James and lost Kevin Love to an injury.
"Kyrie, rightfully so, took responsibility understanding that we had some scoring issues," said Cavs coach Davis Blatt. "I just thought Kyrie played his heart out."
James celebrated his 30th birthday in street clothes. He was a late scratch with a sore left knee. Love, meanwhile, had seven points on 1-of-8 shooting before departing with back spasms.
Irving and Matthew Dellavedova hit 3s during a 12-0 first-quarter run. Nine of the next 11 points went to Atlanta to tie it. Then Dion Waiters and Joe Harris hit triples to give the Cavs their biggest lead of the game, 22-14.
Atlanta came back and led 26-25 after one, however, and held Cleveland to 6- of-21 shooting in the second quarter to take a 51-41 lead into halftime.
The Hawks looked to put the game away early in the third quarter, as Korver hit a pair of 3-pointers during a 9-2 run that made it 60-43.
But Cleveland chipped away. James Jones hit a 3-ball and Thompson converted back-to-back layups during a 12-3 flurry.
Cleveland scored seven of the last nine points in the third and got within 78-73 after three.
The 3s were falling for both teams in the fourth. Harris, Irving and Jones hit for Cleveland in a two-minute span, while Atlanta got two from Korver in between.
The Cavs got within two on Jones' corner 3 with 4:44 remaining. The rest of the game belonged to Millsap and Teague.
Millsap made two free throws then canned a mid-range jumper on a feed from Teague. Out of a timeout, Millsap drove in for a tough layup and after empty possessions both ways, Teague isolated and hit a long 2 to push the spread to 103-95.
Millsap and Teague combined to score Atlanta's last 16 points.Game Notes
Mike Miller played 19:06 for Cleveland and did not take a shot ... Harris
scored a career-high 13 points off the bench ... Hawks center Al Horford
(illness) was a late scratch ... The Hawks have taken two of three meetings