The New Orleans Pelicans kept at it for a change, pushing to the finish instead of collapsing from poor execution on Wednesday night against the Atlanta Hawks. Saving their best execution for the fourth quarter, the Pelicans pushed past the Hawks, 105-100, in front of 16,232 at the New Orleans Arena. It was a complete turnaround from Monday night when the Pelicans blew a 14-point lead in the fourth quarter against the San Antonio Spurs and lost 102-95 after they were outscored 38-19 during the final 12 minutes. But not this time. Against the Hawks, the Pelicans trailed by four at the start of the fourth quarter before turning up their intensity and improving their defensive and offensive execution. The Pelicans opened the quarter on a 25-13 run to build a 96-88 lead in which they managed to hold down the stretch. ``I just thought our defense picked up where we wanted it to in the fourth quarter,'' Pelicans coach Monty Williams said. ``That's the formula. If we can get stops, we have enough guys that can make shots and we got contributions all over the place. If you look at the rebounding column, everybody rebounded tonight.'' After losing six consecutive home games, the Pelicans have won three of their last four at the Arena, which will be renamed the Smoothie King Center on Thursday. Making their push in the fourth quarter, the Pelicans surged on a 7-0 run to tie the score at 83. Then with 5:20 remaining, the Pelicans took the lead for good on guard Brian Roberts’ driving shot in the lane. Roberts also made another big shot with 20.5 seconds remaining after Hawks forward Paul Millsap's dunk cut the margin to three. Millsap led the Hawks with 26 points. But Roberts was better in the fourth quarter, hitting all three shots to score eight of his 19 points.
Pelicans beat Hawks 105-100 on strength of fourth quarter play
New Orleans Times-Picayune | Feb 6