Hawks Win 5th Time in Last 6 Games
Auburn Hills, Mich. — Al Horford had 23 points and 22 rebounds, and the Atlanta Hawks beat the Detroit Pistons 114-103 last night for their fifth win in six games.
Josh Smith added 23 points for the Hawks, who were ahead 61-51 at halftime and led by as many as 26 in the third quarter.
The Pistons have lost three straight, all without guard Brandon Knight, who has a hyperextended right knee. Will Bynum was also out yesterday because of a suspension.
Jeff Teague had 20 points for Atlanta, which shot 14 of 33 from 3-point range. Kyle Korver scored 15 points, all from beyond the arc.
Rodney Stuckey led Detroit with 22 points, and Jonas Jerebko added 21.
Wizards 90, Raptors 84
Toronto — Bradley Beal scored 20 points, Nene had 11 points and nine rebounds, and Washington beat Toronto for its third straight victory.
A.J. Price and Martell Webster each added 12 points for the Wizards, who won for just the fifth time in 27 road games this season. Washington’s road record is the worst in the NBA.
John Wall had 10 points and seven assists, and Emeka Okafor had eight points and 13 rebounds as the Wizards won for the 14th time in 23 games.
DeMar DeRozan scored 25 points and Kyle Lowry had 18 for the Raptors, who had won six of their previous seven.
Thunder Sign Veteran Fisher
Oklahoma City — The Oklahoma City Thunder signed veteran Derek Fisher yesterday, filling an opening for a third point guard that was created when Eric Maynor got traded to Portland.
Fisher joins Oklahoma City for the stretch run for the second straight season. He played in 20 regular-season games and then all 20 playoff games last season. He played briefly for the Dallas Mavericks this season, asking for his release in December after injuring his right knee.
Fisher won five NBA championships with the Los Angeles Lakers before getting traded to Houston last season, then buying his way out of his contract with the Rockets.
Heat Have February
Miami — Once again, the Miami Heat look to be using February as a launching point for the stretch run of the season.
With one game left on their schedule before March arrives, the Heat are an NBA-best 11-1 during the second month of 2013.
And that extends a trend that started when LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh became teammates nearly three years ago.
The Heat were 9-3 in February 2011, and 11-2 in February 2012.
And while championships are won in June, success in February might be an indicator of what’s ahead. Dallas had the NBA’s best February mark in 2011 and won the title. The Heat were tied for the best February mark last year and they, too, won the title.