Washington Wizards guard Bradley Beal (3) tries to shoot between Atlanta Hawks’ Kent Bazemore, left, Paul Millsap (4) and Pero Antic (6), from Macedonia, in the first half of Game 4 of the second round of the NBA basketball playoffs Monday, May 11, 2015, in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
Guard Brad Beal scored a game-high 34 points with seven rebounds and six assists, but Washington still fell short, losing to the No. 1 seed Atlanta Hawks, 106-101, in Game Four of the Eastern Conference semifinals on May 11 at Verizon Center in D.C. Atlanta’s win ties the best of seven series at 2-2.
Washington Wizards forward Nene, from Brazil, dunks the ball in front of Atlanta Hawks forward Paul Millsap (4) in the first half of Game 4 of the second round of the NBA basketball playoffs Monday, May 11, 2015, in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
Atlanta dominated Washington in the second quarter and was able to take a 10-point lead into halftime. The Hawks maintained their double-digit lead going into the fourth quarter, but Beal and the Wizards closed in on Atlanta and cut the lead to just three points with nine seconds left. Wizards head coach Randy Wittman then dialed up a three-point attempt play for veteran forward Paul Pierce, who nailed a game-winning jump shot at the buzzer to lead the Wizards to victory in Game Three on Saturday. Unfortunately for Washington fans, Pierce wasn’t able to repeat Monday night as he missed the game-tying three-point attempt, and the Hawks were able to hold on to their desperately needed win.
Pierce finished with 22 points, five rebounds and three blocks. The Wizards suffered from the struggles of center Marcin Gortat, who made just one of seven shot attempts for three points. Reserve forward Drew Gooden also shot poorly from the field, connecting on just one of six shot attempts for three points. Wizards star point guard John Wall, missed action for the third straight game due to a hand/wrist injury.
Hawks point guard Jeff Teague led Atlanta with 26 points and eight assists; forward Paul Milsap scored 19 points and center Al Horford added a double-double 18 points with 10 rebounds for Atlanta.
Next – The Wizards head back to Atlanta for Game Five on Wednesday, May 13. Tip off is set for 8 p.m.