Hawks Beat Heat to Claim Place in NBA Playoffs, Eliminate Knicks

The Atlanta Hawks defeated the Miami Heat 98-85 to claim the final postseason spot in the Eastern Conference and end the New York Knicks’ chances of reaching the National Basketball Association playoffs.

The Hawks advanced to the playoffs for a seventh straight year with the victory last night at Philips Arena in Atlanta.

The Hawks (37-43) have two regular-season games remaining and New York (34-45) has three. Atlanta holds a tiebreaker over the Knicks due to its better conference record.

The defeat drops the NBA champion Heat into a tie with the Indiana Pacers for the best record in the Eastern Conference, with both teams on 54-26 marks.

Jeff Teague led Atlanta against Miami with 25 points, while Louis Williams added 23 for the Hawks, who overcame a 27-point performance by LeBron James and a 24-point contribution from Dwyane Wade.