HOUSTON – Danilo Gallinari scored 20 of his 29 points in the first half and the Atlanta Hawks beat Houston 119-107 on Tuesday night, dealing the Rockets a franchise record-tying 17th straight loss.
Atlanta won its sixth straight, matching its longest since the first month of the 2016-17 season.
Houston's losing skid ties the the franchise record by the San Diego Rockets in the team’s inaugural 1967-68 season. The Rockets haven’t won since Feb. 4.
Atlanta led 73-58 at the half, but Houston won the third quarter 34-20 to pull within 93-92 entering the fourth.
“Our defense in the fourth quarter really gave us the win,” Hawks coach Nate McMillan said. “Our guys, they stayed with it, didn’t get rattled and we kept our composure.”
The Hawks were without starting and backup centers Clint Capela (heel) and Onyeka Okongwu (adductor). Without their main two big men, the Hawks started power forwards Gallinari and John Collins.
“I thought both of those guys did a good job of taking advantage of the small-ball they were playing,” McMillan said. “We did a really good job of recognizing where the matchup was and taking advantage of it.”
Gallinari hit 5 of 8 from 3-point range and has scored at least 20 points in four of his last five games after reaching that mark just twice in his first 23 games this season.