Friday, January 11, 2013 10:25 pm
Harris has 24 as Hawks rally past Jazz, 103-95
By CHARLES ODUMAP Sports Writer
Randy Foye had 25 points to lead Utah, which had won four of five but was denied its first back-to-back road wins of the season. Al Jefferson had 23 points and 10 rebounds and Paul Milsap had 20 points and 13 rebounds for the Jazz.
The Hawks, who trailed 75-60 in the third quarter, played from behind before taking their first lead of the second half on consecutive baskets by Al Horford. The second basket by Horford, set up by Josh Smith's pass, gave Atlanta a 94-92 lead with 2:44 remaining.
Jefferson answered with a tying basket before Ivan Johnson scored on a fast break to give the lead back to Atlanta.
Utah's Jamaal Tinsley made one of two free throws to leave the Hawks' lead at 96-95. Josh Smith's short jumper and Lou Williams' 3-pointer padded the lead.
Smith had 15 points and 10 rebounds. Williams had 14, Ivan Johnson had 13 and Horford and Zaza Pachulia each had 12.
Harris made his first start since missing 10 games with a sore left foot. He played 14 scoreless minutes in a loss at Cleveland on Wednesday night and then said before Friday night's game, "As far as I'm concerned, I'm ready to roll."
Harris backed up his claim by making 7 of 8 shots from the field. He added five assists.
Utah took its biggest lead late in the third period when a 3-pointer by Hawks rookie John Jenkins sparked an 8-1 run as Atlanta cut the lead to 76-68 entering the final period.
Pachulia opened the fourth period with back-to-back baskets as the Hawks cut the deficit to four points.
Harris hit a 3-pointer to cut Utah's lead to 82-79 and made only1 of 3 free throws 40 seconds later to trim the deficit to two points.
The Hawks finally pulled even at 85-all with 5:48 remaining when Harris had a steal to set up his 3-pointer. Utah Jazz forward Marvin Williams, traded to Utah in the offseason following seven seasons with the Hawks, was with the team but not in uniform in his first return to Atlanta. Williams, who was held out with inflammation in his right knee, visited his former Hawks teammates before the game.
Harris was acquired by Atlanta in the Williams trade.
Hawks coach Larry Drew started Harris with Jeff Teague in the backcourt and Kyle Korver at small forward as he tweaked the lineup.
NOTES: Former Hawks star Dominique Wilkins, on press row as a TV color analyst, was presented a birthday cake during a break. Wilkins celebrates his 53rd birthday on Saturday. ... Korver hit a 3-pointer in the first quarter to give him 3s in a personal-best 29 consecutive games. ... Foye had 15 points in the first quarter as he made each of his three 3-pointers.