The Pelicans (21-27) won for only the second time in the past 11 games. Anthony Davis finished with a game-high 27 points and 10 rebounds.
Hawks coach Mike Budenholzer was aware of the challenge presented by Davis.
“It’s about Davis, he’s a really good young player,” Budenholzer said before the game. “He’s got great length and does a lot of things extremely well. He”’ have a big impact on the defensive end of the floor with blocked shots and his overall play. He’s become a good shooter.”
The Hawks trailed by as many as eight points in the fourth quarter. They trimmed the Pelican’s advantage to just three, 98-95, with under a minute remaining. However, Brian Roberts scored on a layup with 20.5 seconds remaining. After a Millsap miss, Austin Rivers sunk a pair of free throws with 16.1 seconds left to end any notion of a Hawks comeback at 102-97.
The Hawks took a 75-71 lead into the fourth quarter as they used the long ball. Six of their nine third-quarter baskets were 3-pointers, including three straight from Millsap. The All-Star also made an impression with a huge dunk over the Pelicans’ Greg Stiemsma.
The Hawks took a 51-47 lead into halftime despite trailing by as many as eight points in the second quarter. The Hawks ended the half on a 16-4 run, which included four 3-pointers, to take the advantage. Carroll hit two straight 3-pointers to end the run. Scott and Korver also connected from long range as the Hawks outscored the Pelicans 27-19 in the second quarter.
The Hawks next host another Western Conference opponent in the Grizzlies Saturday.