It takes more than a little blood to stop Atlanta’s Dominique W
LANDOVER, Md. (AP) _ It takes more than a little blood to stop Atlanta’s Dominique Wilkins.
″I’m getting used to it,″ Wilkins, the NBA’s third leading scorer, said Tuesday night after catching an elbow and suffering a cut above the left eye that required six stitches. ″It’s my third time getting stitches this year. It didn’t bother me a whole lot.″
Apparently not. Wilkins, who scored six points before his injury, finished with 31 to lead the Hawks to a 96-87 victory over the Washington Bullets.
Kevin Willis had 22 points for the Hawks, who won their third straight to move a full game ahead of the idle Detroit Pistons in the NBA’s tightly bunched Central Division. Washington has lost three in a row and is 3-5 since center Moses Malone was idled with a neck injury.
Wilkins was injured at 5:33 of the first period after being cut by what he called ″an elbow swipe across the forehead. I think it was Jay (Vincent), but it was an accident.″
The Hawks trailed 17-12 at the time and were down 26-21 when he returned with 8:38 left in the second period.
Atlanta shot 39 percent and Washington 25 percent in a first half that included Wilkins’ injury, a near-fight between Atlanta’s Spud Webb and Washington’s Michael Adams and the ejection of Bullets coach Kevin Loughery, who drew two technical fouls while arguing a call.
The Bullets made only 30 of 92 shots for the game for a dismal 32.6 percent. Guard Jeff Malone, in what he conceded was ″probably my worst shooting night,″ was one of 14, getting his only field goal with five seconds remaining. Malone is averaging 22.3 points a game.
The Bullets led 21-19 after one period but Atlanta was in front 42-37 at halftime. Wilkins scored 12 points in the third period as the Hawks extended their lead to 72-64.