Archives For Game Recap

The Hawks allowed the Magic to score 31 points in the opening quarter, showing signs that Atlanta’s prolonged defensive slump may still be alive and result in the team’s first four-game losing streak of the year.

Thankfully for the Atlanta fans, the Hawks’ defense finally showed up in the second half, as Orlando was held to just 31 points over the final 24 minutes of the game as Atlanta cruised to a 95-83 victory.

Paul Millsap finished with 25 points, 11 rebounds, three assists, and four blocks in leading the Hawks to the win. Millsap’s play was extremely vital in the first half when the Hawks were struggling; the power forward had 18 points and eight rebounds in that half alone, which helped keep the Hawks within five points when the buzzer sounded to end the second quarter.

In the third quarter, the Hawks’ defense really started getting the Magic’s offense out of rhythm by forcing bad shots. Orlando became so frustrated that they started taking almost any shot they could get, which resulted in 3-point attempts early in the shot clock by shooters who probably are not suited to take those attempts. However, thanks to some good defense of their own, the Magic maintained a three-point lead heading into the final period.

After Dennis Schroder hit a 3 to open the period and tie the game, Orlando went on a 7-0 run and things were looking bleak for the Hawks. However, the offense that the Hawks have been winning games off of all season finally showed up in the fourth quarter, as Atlanta got the ball moving, created open shots, and connected on those opportunities to open up a 24-3 run that finally buried the Magic. Continue Reading…

With the Atlanta Hawks trailing 68-43 with nine minutes remaining in the third quarter, coach Mike Budenholzer received his second technical foul and first ejection as a head coach for arguing a non-call on an Al Horford layup attempt. The Hawks were briefly energized, closing the quarter on a 22-14 run, but it wasn’t enough. Boris Diaw trolled the Hawks with 15 fourth-quarter points as the Spurs held off Atlanta for a 114-95 win at Philips Arena.

Diaw was drafted by the Hawks with the 21st pick in the 2003 NBA draft and became an enigma in Atlanta. Coach Mike Woodson implored Diaw to focus on scoring, but his nature was to play point-forward. The Hawks later packaged Diaw with a pair of first round draft picks in the trade that landed Joe Johnson from the Suns. Diaw eventually found a home in San Antonio, where his ball distribution was welcomed and he helped the Spurs re-emerge as champions. Today he seemed to send a message to Hawks fans by looking for his own shot in the fourth quarter, scoring 15 of his 17 points on eight shots in the period to stamp out the Hawks’ rally.

After the game, Kyle Korver had this to say:

“I think at this point in the season, it’s not about little things anymore, it’s bigger picture stuff. I think we’re at a point in the season where we have a good lead in the standings and we know the playoffs are coming. We’ve had this long roadtrip and it’s easy to kind of relax a little bit, but the good teams are able to keep their foot on the pedal.”

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Hawks Collapse in OKC

Bo Churney —  March 21, 2015 — 2 Comments

It was the end of the west coast road trip. The Hawks were down three key rotation players with the absences of Mike Scott, Kyle Korver, and Thabo Sefolosha. And most importantly, individual regular season games are not that vital when you have clinched the division and are likely to take the number one seed in the Eastern Conference.

But boy was this game a stinker.

Russell Westbrook and Anthony Morrow ran wild on the Hawks in the fourth quarter, scoring 27 of Oklahoma City’s 33 fourth quarter points on their way to completing a comeback over Atlanta to win 123-115. Westbrook coordinated a 23-6 run in the quarter that was a result of great execution by Oklahoma City and non-existent execution by the Hawks.

The first half started off extremely hot, as both teams were shooting a high percentage from the field. Even Pero Antic woke up from his shooting slump, tying a career-high 18 points before the half had even ended. Antic finished the game with 22 points, and overall, the Hawks shot 58% in the half and maintained a 68-61 lead into the intermission.

The Hawks started to show some cracks in the third quarter, but were able to keep their lead thanks to some great play from Paul Millsap. Millsap was 4-for-5 from the field in the quarter with nine points, which were enough to keep the Hawks afloat. Millsap finished the game with a line of 19 points, three rebounds, three assists, four steals, and two blocks.

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A Festus Ezeli dunk with 3:23 remaining in the third quarter was part of a 13-3 run to close the quarter, leaving Golden State up 83-64 en route to a 114-95 victory over the Hawks in Oakland, Ca. Prior to Ezeli’s dunk, Draymond Green dropped off a pass before bowling over a stationary Pero Antic. The absense of a whistle would be a theme throughout the night.

Throughout the first half, the Hawks were plagued by defensive miscues. Golden State’s first basket came on a Justin Holiday layup. Kent Bazemore worked a give-and-go with Al Horford for a layup and nobody picked up Bazemore’s man, Holiday, in transition. With the Warriors up 5-4 with 8:45 remaining in the first, the Hawks were confused about assignments on an inbounds play. DeMarre Carroll left Harrison Barnes to pick up Steph Curry, who was completely unguarded at the 3-point line. Curry got it to Barnes for a corner three and an 8-4 Warriors lead.

With 6:15 remaining in the first, Jeff Teague made zero effort to get around a Bogut pick, and Curry hit the resulting wide-open three to put the Warriors in front 17-13. Then, with 2:53 left in the first, Barnes got a dunk off an inbounds play as Paul Millsap was caught unaware by a back screen. That put Golden State up 22-18. On the very next Warriors possession, Carroll picked up Andre Iguodala in transition. Millsap stood around guarding nobody as Barnes cut down the lane for another dunk and a 24-18 GSW lead with 2:30 remaining in the first. Moments later, Antic cheated toward the three point line as Curry came off a Marreese Speights pindown screen and Iguodala instead passed it to Speights for an uncontested dunk and a 26-22 Golden State lead with 1:15 to play in the first. Continue Reading…

Even with Kyle Korver out to injury and Al Horford out for rest purposes, the Atlanta Hawks hung on to Monday night’s game against the Sacramento Kings to get the 110-103 victory.

The first quarter of this game helped signify that it would be a close affair all night. The Kings were shooting well and playing with pace on offense. DeMarcus Cousins was a load early on both offensively and defensively; at one point, he blocked shots on consecutive Atlanta possessions and simply made the Hawks look silly in their offensive attempts. Thankfully for the Hawks, DeMarre Carroll and Paul Millsap were able to make shots and take advantage of some mismatches, leading to the two scoring eight points a piece in the quarter.

The Hawks started to pull away in the second quarter, largely thanks to the play of one Jeffrey DeMarco Teague. Teague’s agressive play, combined with the defensive intensity of Kent Bazemore, allowed the Hawks get an advantage, resulting in a 53-47 lead at halftime.

The third quarter was a repeat of the first… almost literally. The Kings won the first quarter 29-28 and they won the third quarter by the same score. Jason Thompson and Andre Miller started making their impacts in this period, as their play sparked a 16-7 mini-run by Sacramento that allowed the Kings to stay in the game. This run was despite DeMarcus Cousins nearly having a meltdown, as the former Kentucky product recorded four turnovers, four fouls, and one technical foul in the period. Continue Reading…

In the ever Popovichian-move, Coach Budenholzer decided to rest three starters against the Los Angeles Lakers. Little did he know is that he would soon be without a fourth.

The Atlanta Hawks defeated the Lakers 91-86 on Sunday night despite Jeff Teague, DeMarre Carroll, and Paul Millsap all sitting for rest purposes. The Hawks also played most of the game without Kyle Korver, who suffered a broken nose in the second quarter after hitting an Ed Davis screen. Korver, who was likely scheduled to be rested for Monday night’s game against the Kings, has officially been ruled out for that game.

Back to this game: it was all about Dennis Schröder. Schröder recorded a career-high 24 points and 10 assists in leading the shorthanded Hawks to the victory. This was Schröder’s third double-double for the season, all three of which have come on the road in games where Dennis got the start over an injured or rested Teague.

Even with the lack of active players, the Hawks still controlled this game for the first three quarters. The Lakers, who have dealt with injury issues the whole season, do not have a lot of talent that they can currently put out on the floor and the result Schröder and Al Horford dominating in spots where they were supposed to dominate. Continue Reading…

Well they can’t all be easy. The Hawks needed a late game comeback, some clutch shooting, and Al Horford to pull out tonight’s very physical victory, but they prevailed defeating the Suns 96-87.

The reason the Hawks struggled really felt like the same old story just told in a different setting with a different opponent. The team has been coasting for much of the last month and it’s quite obvious on night’s like tonight where it just doesn’t feel like the team is all the way there. The offense would randomly sputter for long stretches of time throughout the night, and far too often were the Suns allowed to get out on the break and run. Atlanta did a good job of getting back in transition, but the Suns managed to use the chaos to get off a quick set and score some easy buckets. The Hawks still played great when they had to, but it felt very inconsistent and unlike what their expectations are at right now.

Of course, this might have had to do with the physicality of the game and less to do with the Hawks themselves. The refs were letting both sides play for most of the night and Phoenix took advantage of it first. They played physical with Atlanta and used that physicality to force them out of their comfort zone, and break up a lot of their sets. It was a sloppy game, especially in the second half, that involved a lot of players having to create their own offense. This is an enviorment that a player like Eric Bledsoe can thrive in as he scored 21 points and was generally causing havoc for the Hawks defense all night.

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Hawks Destroyed in Denver

Bo Churney —  March 11, 2015 — 1 Comment

Well that was not exactly the way the team wanted to start off the road trip.

The Atlanta Hawks went into Denver on Wednesday night and were absolutely demolished by the Nuggets, losing by a score of 115-102. The Hawks were saved from an embarrassing score by the team’s garbage unit, who went on a 24-1 run in the fourth quarter to make the game a little interesting by cutting Denver’s huge lead to just single-digits with about a minute to go.

However, that one run was not indicative of what really happened in this contest. The game was similar to the Hawks win against Sacramento on Monday night, only in reverse and seemingly worse. The Hawks had problems making shots and executing on offense throughout most of the game while Denver was not missing from the field, regardless of the difficulty of the shot attempt.

The first quarter appeared to be a fluke, but it proved to be a sign of things to come. The Hawks committed silly turnovers like stepping out of bounds twice and missing a few open 3s. Atlanta was getting some decent looks inside the perimeter, however, shooting 9-for-14 on 2s during the quarter. This combined with Denver’s 60% shooting from the field seemed to show that the Hawks could rebound later in the game. Continue Reading…

The Hawks opened the game with two straight DeMarre Carroll threes and didn’t stop shooting until the final buzzer, running up a season-high 130 points against the Sacramento Kings Monday night at Philips Arena. Each of the five starters shot at least 50% as the Hawks rang up 42 assists, tied for the fourth-highest total in Atlanta’s history. Atlanta hit 20 3s, a franchise-record for a single game, and notched their 50th win of the season, marking the first time since the team moved to Atlanta that the Hawks were the first team in the league to reach 50 wins.

The Hawks came out firing in the first quarter, assisting on 12 of their 13 field goals and shooting 57% in the quarter, including five 3s from Carroll and Kyle Korver. Korver had been struggling since the All-Star Break, shooting just 31% from 3 and 32% overall since the extended time off. Korver finished 6-for-8 from 3 as the Kings lost him numerous times in transition and in the half court offense. Korver has recently said that his shooting troubles date back to before the break, so this big game should do wonders for any issues through which he’s been working.

Atlanta scored 76 points in the first half, their highest total in a half all season, racking up 25 assists along the way. The Hawks shot 62.5% from the field in the first half, including 12-for-19 on 3s, as the ball continued to find open shooters while the Kings scrambled on defensive rotations. Continue Reading…

The Hawks are definitely in for the long haul. And with Mike Budenholzer being a disciple of the Spurs organization, resting players on the second game of a back-to-back is not surprising.

Losing to the Philadelphia 76ers after having a 16-point lead, however, is not a great showing.

The Sixers rallied against the shorthanded Hawks in the second half, limiting Atlanta to just 31 points of offense over the final 24 minutes. The Hawks — sitting Kyle Korver, DeMarre Carroll, and Paul Millsap — had absolutely nothing to give in the second half on offense, shooting just 11-for-40 (27.5%) from the field and only getting to the foul line six times.

The Hawks’ two remaining starters, Al Horford and Jeff Teague, were the big culprits in the collapse. Horford missed his final seven shots from the field, a few of the them badly hitting off the front of the rim and another that completely missed the rim altogether. Meanwhile, Teague was having problems with Philly’s quick and athletic defense, yielding four turnovers in the 17 minutes he played in the second half.

Horford was not the only one to have problems hitting the rim. John Jenkins, who started for Korver, opened with second half by missing the rim on two 3-point attempts. Mike Scott had similar “success” in the second half, as he also fell victim to an airball on a wide-open attempt. Continue Reading…