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Philadelphia 76ers Tell ‘Em: Hawks Downed 90-76 in Best Win of Season

Jan 20, 2012, 9:25 PM EDT

The Sixers beat the Hawks with a hard-fought second half, erasing the bad memories of their Wednesday loss against Denver

Well, it probably won’t make the Lead on SportsCenter or anything, but
the Sixers got their most legit win of the season tonight at the Wells
Fargo Center, beating the 11-4 Atlanta Hawks by a score of 90-76. Things
were looking pretty dire for the Liberty Ballers after a first half
shooting under 40% and trailing by as much as 11, but they clamped down
in the third, allowing a season-best 10 points in the third and running
out to a seven-point lead at quarter’s end that they never relinquished.
The Hawks waved the white flag with their scrub unit with three minutes
to go, and the Sixers cruised to a suddenly easy victory.

The
game ball certainly goes to Jrue Holiday, having a nice bounce-back game
after a rough performance against the Nuggets, scoring 16 points on
6-16 shooting, but handing out 11 assists, including a beautiful
alley-oop to Andre Iguodala [watch the oop video here] that helped propel the team’s second-half
run. Thaddeus Young also had his second 20-point game in a row, scoring
20 on 8-11 shooting, while Elton Brand posted a double-double with ten
points and a season-high 16 rebounds. On the other side of the ball,
Iguodala played his trademark smothering defense on Joe Johnson, holding
him to just eight points on eight shots in 31 minutes of action.

The
win is probably the biggest for the team this young season, not just
because the Hawks have the best record of any Sixers opponent, but
because it was a hard-fought win right after the biggest loss of the
season, and because it was in front of the home fans at a respectably
filled and very appreciative WFC, who now have a reason to come back on
Friday Nights in the future besides the prospect of free Big Macs.

Our man Enrico was at the game and will be by in a minute with a fuller
report, but in the meantime, let’s hear it for the Sixers, taking care
of business before heading out to Miami for that first-round rematch. At
the very least, they know they can play tomorrow with a big win in
their back pocket, knowing this test stretch won’t be completely in
vain.