Hawks Fall Short Of Heat


Dan Majerle and Isaiah Rider staged a personal 3-point shooting battle in the fourth quarter, but Voshon Lenard's pinky may have been the difference.

Majerle's 3-pointer with 1:15 left proved to be the game-winner as the Miami Heat defeated the Atlanta Hawks, 93-91 on Wednesday night.

Alonzo Mourning scored 25 points and grabbed 13 rebounds, but missed two shots in the final 25 seconds that gave the Hawks a chance to win with 5.9 seconds left.

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  • Rider, guarded closely by Majerle, threw a hard pass that deflected off Lenard's pinky, off teammate Bimbo Coles and out of bounds with 2.6 left.

    "I tried to whip it by Lenard, but he got a pinky on it," said Rider, who scored 11 of his 28 points in the final quarter. "That's the way it goes. A half-inch more and he missed it and Bimbo has the ball and the shot."

    Lenard was fouled and made one of two to give Miami a 93-91 lead with 1.7 left.

    Rider, who scored 32 points in Tuesday's 113-106 Hawks' win, missed a 35-footer at the buzzer that slammed off the backboard and rim. The miss helped Miami secure its seventh straight home win against the Hawks.

    "Dan always seems to come up clutch," said Heat coach Pat Riley. "He plays tough defense and always seems to be around big plays at crunch time."

    Dikembe Mutombo had 20 points and 18 rebounds for the Hawks.

    Majerle scored 11 of his 18 points in the fourth quarter, including consecutive 3-pointers in the final two minutes.

    "I just kind of got it going," Majerle sid. "I hit that last-second one and just started feeling it."

    Majerle's 3-pointer gave Miami a 78-76 lead with 5:55 left.

    After Rider countered with a trey, Majerle hit two free throws and fed P.J. Brown for an alley-oop dunk and an 82-79 lead.

    Alan Henderson hit a driving layup and Lenard answered with an 18-footer as the shot clock expired, giving Miami an 84-81 edge with 3:15 left.

    Rider banked in a 12-footer, drawing Atlanta to within 84-83 with 2:56 remaining.

    "That's all he (Majerle) does is shoot 3-pointers," said Hawks coach Lenny Wilkens. "You have to make him put it on the floor. You can't let him camp out at the 3-point line."

    Tim Hardaway, who was out with a jammed right knee, missed his first game of the season. He will undergo an MRI Friday and is expected to miss at least 4-5 days.

    Rider's layup and two free throws, along with a 3-pointer by Jason Terry, helped the Hawks to a 46-39 lead at halftime.

    Notes

  • After 22 lead changes in Tuesday's game, the Heat and Hawks had another 18 Wednesday, including 11 ties.
  • Miami committed just three turnovers in the second half to Atlanta's 12.
  • Mourning scored over 20 points for the seventh straight game.
  • Hardaway, who reached his career 10,000 minute in Tuesday's game against Atlanta, missed two games last season and just six in the previous four.
  • Pat Riley won his 200th game as coach of the Heat (200-108) to become just the third NBA coach to win 200 games with three different teams (Knicks, Lakers). Hawks coach Lenny Wilkens and Bill Fitch are the others.
  • Rookie point guard Anthony Carter, getting his first career start because of Hardaway's injury, had eight points and eight assists.
  • Miami is 4-0 in the second game of back-to-backs this season and was 16-4 last year.

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