Basketball: Hawks tear holes in the Nets, advance to meet Wizards in second round

Atlanta Hawks' Paul Millsap (centre) drives to the basket past the Nets' Brook Lopez (left) and Deron Williams (right) during the first half of game six of the NBA playoff match at the Barclays Centre in Brooklyn, New York on May 1 2015. -- PHOT
Atlanta Hawks' Paul Millsap (centre) drives to the basket past the Nets' Brook Lopez (left) and Deron Williams (right) during the first half of game six of the NBA playoff match at the Barclays Centre in Brooklyn, New York on May 1 2015. -- PHOTO: EPA

NEW YORK (AFP) - The top-seeded Atlanta Hawks romped past the Brooklyn Nets 111-87 on Friday to punch their ticket to the second round of the NBA play-offs.

The Hawks used a strong start to the second half to turn a slim lead at the interval into a blow-out, completing a 4-2 triumph over the Nets in their best-of-seven Eastern Conference first-round series.

Atlanta face the Washington Wizards in the second round.

They will host game one on Sunday against a Wizards team who swept the Toronto Raptors in four games.

The Hawks won three of their four regular-season games against Washington.