Monday NBA odds: Atlanta Hawks at Detroit Pistons

The decided to hang onto Josh Smith at Thursday’s trade deadline despite quite possibly getting nothing for Smith this summer when he becomes a free agent. But the decision seems to have inspired the team as it enters Monday’s game at Detroit having won two straight since the deadline passed.

Atlanta won 103-102 at Milwaukee on Saturday. Center Al Horford backed down defender Larry Sanders, who leads the league in blocked shots per game, and hit a baby hook shot with 5.9 seconds left as the Hawks rallied late. Horford’s shot came after a driving layup by Monta Ellis had given the Bucks a 102-101 lead with 10.8 seconds left. Ellis missed a running shot in the lane as time expired. Horford finished with 23 points and 11 rebounds, Jeff Teague also scored 23 and added nine assists, and Harris contributed 21 points for Atlanta. Horford has scored at least 20 points in each of his last five games, after never previously having even a three-game streak of games with 20 or more points.

Detroit lost 90-72 at home to Indiana on Saturday, its second straight blowout to the Pacers. Will Bynum led Detroit with 15 points before getting ejected for striking Tyler Hansbrough in the groin in the fourth quarter. It’s likely Bynum will be suspended for at least a game. Rodney Stuckey was quiet in Saturday’s loss, scoring 11 points with two rebounds and one assist in 33 minutes. Charlie Villanueva shot 1-of-11 from the field and committed five personal fouls in 25 minutes. The Pistons scored nine points in the first quarter and they had 28 points at halftime, seemingly incapable of generating easy looks against the Pacers’ elite defense. They shot 33.8 percent from the field as a team, including 2-of-14 from downtown.

Atlanta and Detroit meet for the final time this season, with the season series at 1-1. On Dec. 26 in Atlanta, the Hawks won 126-119 in double overtime. Smith scored 31 points and Horford added 22. The Hawks blew a 22-point, fourth-quarter lead as Bynum and fellow reserve Villanueva scored a combined 26 of Detroit’s 39 points in the final period of regulation. Bynum finished with 31 points, one less than his career high.

On Jan. 4 in Detroit, the Pistons won 85-84. Detroit blew a 19-point lead, but Atlanta had a potential tying shot changed by the officials in the final seconds and Andre Drummond got a piece of Lou Williams’ shot as time expired, preserving the win for the Pistons. Williams has since been lost for the season.

WagerWeb.com trends: Under is 6-1 in the last 7 meetings in Detroit. Over is 5-2 in the last 7 meetings. Hawks are 1-4-1 ATS in the last 6 meetings. Underdog is 4-1-1 ATS in the last 6 meetings. Hawks are 1-5-1 ATS in the last 7 meetings in Detroit.

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