Archives For April 2016

The Atlanta Hawks took one giant step forward in realising their goal of home court advantage following a 118-107 home victory against the Boston Celtics, in what was the Hawks’ final home game of the regular season. The Celtics were led by Marcus Smart’s 19 points off of the Boston bench, while the Hawks were led by a monster effort from Paul Millsap — 31 points and 16 rebounds.

Standings watch…

The night before this game, the Miami Heat dropped a game in Orlando against the Magic, relinquishing Miami’s control of the third seed as they own the tie breaker over the Hawks. That loss, and this Hawks win, effectively means that the third seed in the East is now, officially, Atlanta’s to lose. The Hawks now have a one game advantage over the Celtics and the Heat with just two games remaining, meaning the magic number for the Hawks to clinch home court advantage is just one.

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The Atlanta Hawks avoided a regular season series sweep against the Toronto Raptors with a 95-87 victory at Philips Arena last night. The win doesn’t change the overall complexion of the season series — the Raptors winning the series 3-1 — but it was a good note to end the season series on.

The Raptors were led by Kyle Lowry and DeMar DeRozan’s, who both scored 16 points apiece, while the Hawks were led by Jeff Teague’s 23 point outing and Paul Millsap’s double-double of 13 points and 14 rebounds.

Quick playoff seeding implications…

Last night’s victory kept the Hawks in third place in the East, however, the Miami Heat picked up a big win last night against the Bulls to keep the pressure on the Hawks. The Heat play the Magic in Orlando tonight on the second night of a back-to-back, and the Hawks will have to hope that the Heat drop a game if they want to remain as the third seed, as the Heat own the tiebreaker over the Hawks.

In saying that, the Hawks have to focus on their own schedule, and there may not be a bigger game than Saturday’s home tilt against the Boston Celtics, who are right behind the Hawks in the standings.

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The Atlanta Hawks avenged their rough mid-season loss to the Phoenix Suns with a 103-90 victory at Philips Arena last night. After Archie Goodwin threw up a three-point prayer in Phoenix, and nailed it with 0.1 seconds remaining, the Hawks made sure to take care of their business, and beat the Suns as everyone believed they would.

The Suns were led by Devin Booker’s 34 points, while the Hawks were led by Paul Millsap’s near triple-double effort (which we’ll cover in greater detail), and Al Horford’s double-double of 16 points and 10 rebounds.

Quick playoff implications

With the Charlotte Hornets dropping a game to the Toronto Raptors last night, the Hawks moved 1.5 games clear of the Hornets and remain in control of the third seed. Although, to keep that third seed they will need to put some distance between themselves and the Miami Heat, who are one game behind Atlanta having played a game less — and own the tiebreaker having won the season series.

Weathering the storm

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The Atlanta Hawks lost a heartbreaker last night at Philips Arena, as they were defeated 110-108 by the Cleveland Cavaliers in overtime. LeBron James led the Cavaliers with a LeBron-like/playoff-like stat line of 29 points, 16 rebounds, nine assists, three steals, and one block. Kyrie Irving also added 20 points the Cavs’ cause.

The Hawks were led by Paul Millsap’s double-double — 29 points, 12 rebounds — and Jeff Teague’s 28 points and nine assists.

A valiant effort

A valiant, heartbreaking, terrible, then amazing, spirited, sometimes passionless, sometimes passionate game. So many contrasting emotions.

The Hawks were looking good with a lead of 19-14 in the first quarter until the Cavaliers ripped off a 13-0 run near the end of the first quarter to give themselves a nine point lead heading into the second quarter. OK, a nine point deficit — not too bad. It’s not ideal but it’s fine.

What wasn’t fine was the Hawks’ effort in the second quarter. They looked as though they were afraid to drive toward the rim and, as such, settled for a lot of jump shots. Here is the Hawks’ second quarter shot chart. Warning, there’s a lot of red.

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