Rolando Blackman wasn’t nervous.
DALLAS (AP) _ Rolando Blackman wasn’t nervous.
″When I’m in that situation, it’s a calm, serene feeling,″ he said. ″Everything slows down to a still picture. I want to be on the line in those situations.″
Blackman made four free throws in the final 30 seconds Friday night and the Dallas Mavericks beat the Atlanta Hawks 100-95. It was the sixth victory in seven games for the Mavericks. Atlanta lost its third straight.
With the score 98-95, Atlanta’s Dudley Bradley missed a 3-pointer and Sam Perkins made two more free throws.
Derek Harper, who scored 28 points for Dallas, couldn’t take the tension while Blackman was taking his foul shots.
″I knew Ro was going to make them but I just couldn’t watch,″ Harper said. ″I was going to find out from the crowd reaction.″
Harper, who had his fourth straight game with 20 points or more, scored seven straight during a 9-0 run that gave Dallas a 73-68 in the third quarter.
Atlanta, which had won five straight against Dallas, closed to 75-74 at the end of the quarter.
’They’re a very aggressive team and you have to match them,″ Perkins said. ″We didn’t beat them at all last year so we had to play them physical.″
Atlanta dropped all three games on its Texas trip. The Hawks already lost at Houston and San Antonio.
″This is a heartbreaking loss,″ Hawks coach Mike Fratello said. ″The spectators had a great game to watch. We are trying to survive with peoiple who are not accustomed to starting.″
Dominique Wilkins scored 26 points for Atlanta. Blackman scored 20 for the Mavericks.
Dallas led by as many as seven in the first quarter behind Perkins’ 10 points, but Atlanta stepped up its defensive pressure to take a 52-50 halftime lead.