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Warriors cap successful trip with rout of Hawks

The SportsXchange

ATLANTA -- The Golden State Warriors were running on fumes by the time they got to Atlanta for the last game of a seven-game road trip. But coach Mark Jackson wasn't going to let his team settle for going home with a 5-2 record when they had a chance to make franchise history by finishing the trip 6-1. You never know, he figures, when one game will make a difference in making the playoffs.

Tired legs and all, the Warriors rode a 62-point first half to a 115-93 drubbing of the Hawks Saturday night at Philips Arena. Playing the second of back-to-back games, the Warriors (16-8) had five players in double figures and led by as many as 27 points in the third quarter.

"I told them before the game," Jackson said, "I'm tired so I know they're tired. Physically beat up, ready to get home. That's no excuse; 6-1 sounds better than 5-2. The good teams make sure that they finish the course.

"Our bench was off the charts, and defensively we really paid attention to detail and took them out of what they do best. And then 32 assists, sharing the basketball."

Stephen Curry had 18 points, 11 assists and eight rebounds, David Lee had 20 points and 11 rebounds and Harrison Barnes scored 19 points. Carl Landry scored 19 points off the bench on 8-of-10 shooting in a span of 22 minutes.

"I actually felt pretty good once I got out there," Lee said. "I was really proud of our guys. Everybody brought it."

"They beat us in every phase," Hawks coach Larry Drew said. "There was just nothing that we did right tonight."

Al Horford led the Hawks (14-7) with 17 points and nine rebounds. Josh Smith, who had only three points on 1-of-10 shooting in the first half, gave way to Ivan Johnson, who finished with 15 points and nine rebounds.

"They were coming down, digging a lot, sagging a guy in so I wouldn't get to the middle," Smith said. "But you're going to have games like this."

Horford was the only Eastern Conference player averaging better than 16 points, 10 rebounds and three assists coming into the game and Lee was the only Western Conference player with those averages.

NOTES: The Warriors' Festus Ezeli, unable to work the soreness out of a right knee contusion sustained Friday night against the Magic, was scratched from the lineup just before tip-off. Andris Biedrins started in his place. ... Hawks coach Larry Drew, reflecting on how the team is coming together without star Joe Johnson, who was traded to the Brooklyn Nets in the offseason, says, "I wasn't sure how soon this team would come together. We just tried to gut it out. Not saying that we're there but we're headed in the right direction." ... Anthony Morrow sat out the game with a sore back, something he started feeling in the game against the Grizzlies in Memphis last Saturday. The training staff has been managing it since but it got to the point that they felt it would be best for Morrow to shut down for a game. He is day to day. ... The Hawks were without Al Horford and Devin Harris when they lost to the Warriors 92-88 in Oakland on November 14; both players were out with the flu. Drew sounds as though he's coming down with the flu again. ... Asked before the game about the difference Horford would make in the Hawks' lineup this time around, Warriors coach Mark Jackson quipped, "He's a big-time center. I was hoping that he didn't play tonight!" ... Jackson, who said his team lost to the Magic 99-85 in Orlando last night because, "We got out-played, we got out-worked," was determined that his team was not going to throw this game away and be satisfied to go 5-2 on the seven-game road trip rather than 6-1. He knows he's asked a lot of Stephen Curry and David Lee on this trip in terms of minutes. "They're not one-way players," he says. "They are the reason why we are off to the type of start that we are."
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