Archives For December 2015

Al Horford scored a season-high 30 points as Atlanta defeated Houston 121-115 for the team’s seventh win in eight games. The Hawks have now won four straight against Houston.

Four Atlanta starters scored 20-plus points, however the Hawks found themselves in rocky waters early. Houston went on a 15-0 run, led by James Harden’s nine, to take a commanding 41-25 lead into the second quarter.

Though trailing most of the contest, the Hawks exhibited a wellspring of resilience in the later stages of play. Behind 71-56 at the half, Atlanta went on a 23-11 run -sparked by Horford’s early seven- to gridlock the score at 82 with 4:30 remaining in the penultimate period of play. Unfazed, the Rockets would respond with a 10-3 run to enter the final stanza ahead 92-85.

The Hawks would hang tough in the fourth to make a dog-fight of matters midway through the final 12. Atlanta would employ the intentional foul strategy to Houston’s Clint Capela (43 percent free-throw) and Dwight Howard (50 percent) to stymie the Rockets’ offensive flow and eventually spark a 9-0 run late to prevail 121-115. Continue Reading…

A night after having their six-game winning streak snapped, the Atlanta Hawks look to get back on track against the home-standing Houston Rockets. Atlanta has defeated the Rockets in the teams’ previous three meetings.

Houston comes in to tonight’s tilt having won four of their last six. However, the Rockets dropped a 110-108 road defeat to the lowly New Orleans Pelicans on Sunday. Ranked 26th in the league in points allowed (105) Houston gave up 63 first-half points, while being lit up by the tandem of Anthony Davis (24) and Eric Gordon (26).

The Rockets’ leading scorer, James Harden (28.4), netted 24 on 8-of-21 shooting from the field. The league’s third-leading rebounder Dwight Howard was held to nine boards and seven points in Houston’s two-point loss.

The Rockets are currently seventh in the west at 16-16. Houston’s Christmas day win over mighty San Antonio (27-6) followed by a loss to woeful New Orleans (10-21) has exemplified the team’s streaky season. Continue Reading…

Monta Eliis scored a season-high 26 as the home-standing Indiana Pacers snapped the Atlanta Hawks’ winning streak at six games. Atlanta turned the ball over 20 times en route to dropping a 93-87 loss to Indiana.

On an off-night for Paul George, the Pacers rode the hot hand of Solomon Hill down the stretch to hold off a late surge by Atlanta. The Hawks’ last stand came when game officials determined Paul Millsap’s missed free-throw went out of bounds off Indiana with 1:05 remaining. Down three, this set the stage for Atlanta to potentially tie the game in the waning moments of regulation. However, Jeff Teague’s sixth, and most costly turnover of the night, came as Ian Mahinimi provided the Pacers with a clutch steal to seal the game in the home team’s favor.

In addition to his game-saving heroics, Mahinmi added 13 points and nine rebounds. Chase Budinger notched four of his 10 points in the fourth to join Solomon Hill and Ellis in twin-figures.

The Indiana bench outscored the Hawks’ 35-25 on the evening. Continue Reading…

The Atlanta Hawks look to extend an NBA best six-game winning streak while visiting the Indiana Pacers tonight at Bankers Life Fieldhouse. Indiana comes into the contest struggling of late, having lost three-of-four.

One of the main catalysts for the Pacers’ recent 1-3 skid has been the slumping performance of All-NBA performer Paul George. This season, the 25 year-old star has averaged an impressive 24.8 points, 7.7 rebounds, 4 assists and 1.6 steals per contest. However, George’s numbers have fallen off considerably in his past four outings. This precipitous drop off includes declined averages of 16.5 points, 5.3 turnovers and 29 percent shooting from the field.

During this 1-3 stretch, Indiana’s team averages have taken a nosedive as well. Overall, the Pacers rank sixth in the NBA in points allowed at 98.7 per contest. The team is seventh in points scored per outing at 102.7. But over their past four, those numbers have declined to 96 points scored and 99.5 yielded.

It’s fair to state that Indiana is struggling as a unit heading into Monday night’s tilt. Continue Reading…

Ball movement. Playmaking. Teamwork.

These terms have been attributed to the modern-day Atlanta Hawks since the arrival of Coach Mike Budenholzer from San Antonio in 2013. Prior to the revolution, the Hawks had struggled to make it out of NBA purgatory, as a middle-tier team that relied far too heavily on isolation play and inconsistent stars.

Things have changed in Atlanta and it’s evident that the coaching staff is on the look-out for young players to come in and play their style of basketball. No example is more obvious than Hawks rookie Lamar Patterson.

Coming out of Pittsburgh as a senior in 2014, Patterson struggled to gain a ton of traction as a legitimate NBA prospect. In fact, after the Hawks drafted Walter Tavares in the 2nd Round, he wasn’t sure he’d be drafted at all. Luckily for both Lamar and the team that selected him, the Hawks gave up a 2015 2nd rounder to Milwaukee for the 48th overall pick in the 2014 draft and selected the 6’5 swingman from Lancaster, PA. Continue Reading…

Atlanta Hawks reserve center Tiago Splitter will be sidelined for a minimum of two contests with a mild right calf strain. Splitter will not travel with the team on its upcoming two-game road trip.

According to Chris Vivlamore of the Atlanta Journal Constitution, Splitter injured his calf early in Saturday’s win against New York. Splitter missed 30 games for the San Antonio Spurs last season with persistent calf problems.

Continue Reading…

The Atlanta Hawks won their sixth consecutive contest Saturday night, defeating the visiting New York Knicks 117-98. While Atlanta turned Philips Arena into the “Highlight Factory” for much of the second half, here are three spectacular plays that stand out above the rest.

 

Teague beats the buzzer.

 

Jeff Teague capped a resurgent Atlanta quarter with this beautiful buzzer beater to bring the Hawks within three heading into the half. For the game Teague finished with 17 points, four assists and two steals. This clutch pull up was Teague’s only 3-pointer of the night. Continue Reading…

 

The Atlanta Hawks have won six straight after capturing a 117-98 victory over the visiting New York Knicks. Atlanta is now the only Eastern Conference team on the season with 20 victories.

In the first quarter New York came out scorching hot, shooting 14-of-22 overall. Knicks’ superstar Carmelo Anthony led the way with nine points in the opening period. New York outscored Atlanta 33-22 in the stanza, holding a 21-6 lead at one point.

In the second frame, Atlanta showed its resilience, besting New York 38-31 to cut into the Knicks’ 10-point lead. Jeff Teague led all Hawks scorers with nine points, on a perfect 2-of-2 from the field and 4-of-4 from the free-throw line. Atlanta entered the half down 63-60.

The Hawks owned the third period, outscoring the Knicks 27-12. Paul Millsap added 11 points and five rebounds for Atlanta as the Hawks took a 12 point lead into the final period of play.

The fourth quarter saw Atlanta build a commanding 24-point lead, while outscoring New York 30-20 in the quarter. The Hawks used a balanced effort in the final period, en route to putting New York away 117-98. Continue Reading…

Christmas season is upon us. It’s a time to reflect back on the year, to spend time with family and to smugly step over people for that last bit of Christmas shopping, like Allen Iverson over Tyronn Lue.

The 2014-15 Atlanta Hawks were a gift to the city and their fans all around the world, as an oft-forgotten team reached dizzying heights never seen before in franchise history. While the current team has yet to soar like the year before, the new ownership and return of the NBA’s coach of the year brings stability to club with a volatile past.

The team knows it is better to give than receive, as evidenced by their 25 assists per game that ranks third in the association. But there are a few items each member could use heading into the meat of the season. And so, I would like to offer each member of the Hawks the perfect Christmas present as they look to turn a corner heading into 2016.

Jeff Teague: A year’s supply of ankle wraps

Jeff Teague has not matched his All-Star level production from a year ago, but a good chunk of that can be attributed to an ankle injury that still plagued him early this season.

In the Hawks’ final game before Christmas, Teague, finally on two ankles he could trust, had a stat-stuffing box score of 23 points, nine assists, six rebounds and four steals. Or should I say stocking stuffer? Continue Reading…

Hawks vs. Pistons Game Preview

Joshua Broom —  December 23, 2015

Atlanta will look to extend its winning streak to five when they face the Detroit Pistons from Philips Arena on Wednesday. The Hawks reeled off a season-best seven consecutive victories after being soundly defeated by the Pistons, 106-94, on opening night.

In that contest the Hawks’ starters were dominated by Detroit’s. The Piston’s starting five posted 88 points to Atlanta’s 59. Former UGA standout Kentavious Caldwell-Pope led all scorers with 21. Andre Drummond was unstoppable down low, grabbing 19 rebounds while posting 18 points.

Detroit, (17-12) is currently the Eastern Conference’s sixth best team and in the midst of a 3-game winning streak. Detroit rallied from 18 down last night to defeat Miami 93-92.

Meanwhile, the Hawks have gone from ninth to third place in the Eastern Conference standings over the past seven days. At 18-12, Atlanta is one of only three teams in their conference to currently sport 18 victories. Continue Reading…