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One night after the 'D-Will Show,' Nets head to Atlanta and beat the Hawks, 93-80


How'd that post-Deron Williams record-breaking hangover work out for the Nets against the Hawks, you ask?

No bad, not bad at all. After brushing off an early struggle on the offensive side of the ball -- and a Johan Petro run! -- the Nets quickly got themselves into a comfortable rhythm and built/carried a double-digit lead from early in the second quarter until the end of the game, resulting in a 93-80 win.

Key stat: Nets with 20 assists and just nine turnovers.

Yes, it was Petro who led the Hawks early, scoring six of the team's first nine points. The Nets, on the other hand, didn't make a field goal until about four minutes into the game. While Williams, the star of Friday night's game, didn't score a single point until just over eight minutes into the game. He did get hot late in the quarter, scoring seven points and hitting one three -- I know, only one.

The Nets did get a little lucky early with Al Horford picking up two fouls in the first six minutes, but when you consider Petro was playing Horford-esque, scoring 10 points (a season high) in the first, helping the Hawks tie the game up at 23-23 after one, you can say the Hawks were a bit lucky themselves.

In the second quarter, the Nets' defense really stepped up, limiting the Hawks to 14 points. And had they themselves been able to take care of the ball (7 turnovers), they might have had a bigger lead than 51-37. Still, they shot 50 percent in the half and went from being down 11 to up by 14. They battled, for sure.

Enter, the third quarter, where the Nets have had their issues this season, and tonight had an opportunity to really put the Hawks away early.

While the Hawks made a run, closing to within 11, the Nets responded by going to Brook Lopez in the paint and watching as he worked Petro in the paint. And when the Hawks countered by putting Ivan Johnson on him, he continued to put on a show, scoring 14 points in the quarter, helping the Nets to a 19-point lead.

After three, they led 76-57. Game over.

One interesting note, the Nets had a 21-point lead in the 4th quarter, yet we did not see MarShon Brooks until the 4-minute mark in the fourth quarter, when the game was absolutely out of hand. The rotation seems to have shrunk from 10 to nine guys, with Brooks seemingly out of it. Something we'll keep an eye on.

Blatche was hot tonight, scoring 18 points on 9-of-11 shooting and four steals, while Williams followed up his epic performance against the Wizards with 17 points and six assists in 34 minutes.

For more on the Hawks, see: Peachtree Hoops