ATLANTA — Dennis Schroder is in good graces again and the Atlanta Hawks have a badly needed victory.
Schroder, benched in the previous game, scored 31 points Wednesday night and had a key late steal as the Hawks snapped a three-game losing streak with a 110-105 win over the Brooklyn Nets.
“He is a heck of a competitor and it didn’t surprise me,” Nets coach Kenny Atkinson, a former Hawks assistant, said of Schroder’s bounce-back game. “Dennis has the eternal chip on his shoulder. That’s who he is and we couldn’t keep him in front of us. He was getting to the rim at will.”
Schroder followed his steal on Sean Kilpatrick by making two free throws with 15.5 seconds left to give the Hawks a four-point lead and Tim Hardaway Jr. made two foul shots with 11 seconds remaining after a 3-pointer by the Nets’ Jeremy Lin.
Two more free throws by Schroder, who was 10 of 10, put the finishing touches on the victory with 2.2 seconds left.
“I thought he was great,” Hawks coach Mike Budenholzer said of Schroder’s game against the Nets. “The way he attacks the basket. The way he gets inside. The way he is shooting the 3-ball was so much confidence.”
Schroder, though, had been benched by Budenholzer against Golden State on Monday after getting into a third-quarter argument with Howard.
“It’s best that a when a coach says something, you’ve got to accept it and move forward,” Schroder said. “I just have to pick the moments when I talk to teammates. I’m so competitive and when you say something everybody is emotional and can get mad. So, you just have to pick the spots when you do it and tonight everything went well.”
Paul Millsap scored 24 points for the Hawks (35-29), and Dwight Howard had 14 rebounds to go with 11 points. Hardaway scored 16 points.
Kilpatrick had 27 points of the bench for Brooklyn and Brook Lopez scored 18, but the Nets (11-52) were done in by 23 turnovers.
The costliest was Schroder’s steal off Kilpatrick.
“Dennis made a great play from behind to strip him,” Atkinson said. “They turned us over. That’s what they do.”
“I’m a team player and I just want to win,” Schroder said. “I’ll do whatever it takes.”
Hawks have won five straight over the Nets in Atlanta.
A 10-0 run midway in the third quarter gave the Hawks a 72-65 lead and they were up 81-80 going into the fourth quarter despite 14 straight Nets points by Kilpatrick.
Schroder, who scored 19 points in the first quarter against Golden State, had 17 points at halftime, but the Nets led 50-46 behind Lopez’s 13 points, six rebounds and three blocked shots.
“We have to use our decision making a little better at the end,” Atkinson said. “This is a tough loss.”
NOTES: G Dennis Schroder and Hawks coach Mike Budenholzer had a meeting Wednesday morning to hash things out after Schroder was benched in Monday’s loss to Golden State after a third-quarter disagreement with C Dwight Howard that led to an open 3-pointer by Steph Curry. “He was very good,” said Budenholzer, who declined to give specifics of the meeting with Schroder. … It was the first game back in Atlanta for Nets coach Kenny Atkinson, a Hawks assistant the past four seasons. … G Jose Calderon, claimed off waivers last week, made his Hawks debut. … Nets G Joe Harris, hurt last Friday in Utah, is not with the team and remains in the NBA concussion protocol. … Hawks F Mike Dunleavy (ankle) missed his seventh straight game and there is no timetable for his return. … The Nets conclude their eight-game road trip at Dallas on Friday. … The Hawks host Toronto on Friday to end their six-game homestand.