Sports News: Hawks Tie Series with Win Over Bulls in Game 4

Josh Smith seemed to do it all. He attacked the basket. He defended. He rebounded. He made brilliant passes. He even won a crucial jump ball against a taller player.
There was only one thing Smith didn’t do — park himself on the outside, putting up shots beyond his range.

The Atlanta Hawks were just fine with that.

Smith answered his critics with a huge game — 23 points, 16 rebounds and eight assists — and fill-in Jeff Teague came up with the Derrick Rose-like plays down the stretch to lead the Hawks past theChicago Bulls 100-88 Sunday night, evening the Eastern Conference semifinals at two games apiece.

The Hawks snapped a nine-game home losing streak in the second round, their misery dating to a May 13, 1996 win against Orlando.

Smith is frequently criticized by Atlanta fans for his inconsistent play. He heard nothing but cheers in this one, largely staying away from the jumpers, dominating on the inside and finding the open man.

“We’re always trying to stay in his ear, but obviously when he’s going to the basket and making it easy for himself, we just try to keep encouraging him,” teammate Joe Johnson said. “He was All-Star caliber. When he’s playing like that, it’s almost impossible for a team to beat us.”

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