This game was a blowout, meaning there is very little to talk about and discuss from it, so excuse me while I have a little fun with this one.
The Hawks dominated the Hornets on Saturday night in Philips Arena, with a final score of 105-75. And really, the game was not even that close. The Hawks were up 80-36 at one point in the third quarter before they finally pulled the starters. For those that missed the game, here’s a visual representation of how it went down:
Yes, it was that bad. Charlotte’s offense is already awful and that was combined with missing Gary Neal and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, with the latter’s absence also creating a hole in the Hornets’ defense. The Hawks capitalized on these weaknesses and mixed it with some hot shooting, leading to a 64-28 lead at halftime where the Hawkers were shooting 61% and the Hornets were shooting 25.6%.
“That was a good effort that hopefully we can build from,” said head coach Mike Budenholzer in a very blunt statement to open his post game interview.
Paul Millsap led the way with 18 points on 7-for-10 shooting. Millsap gave the business to whomever was guarding him, using a myriad of post moves, jumpers, and off the dribble drives to get his scoring. Millsap also had six rebounds and three steals, which will increase Millsap’s league lead in the steals column.
Likely the only Hawks note to takeaway from the game was the play of Elton Brand, who took the backup center spot for the night to give Pero Antic a night off. Brand put up a solid night of nine points, nine rebounds, and three assists in 28 minutes, proving that he is still a solid option for the Hawks to go to whenever they need him.
“It was fun,” said Brand when asked about what it is like to play in a laugher like this game. Clearly the Hornets did not see it that way, as Gerald Henderson was assessed a technical late in the fourth quarter after a short scuffle with Brand after a foul. Henderson played a game-high 35 minutes and scored 14 points on 14 shots.
Other Hawks stats to take note of: Kyle Korver scored 12 points in 22 minutes on just five shots. Al Horford only played 19 minutes and put up a line of 11 points, four rebounds, two assists, and two blocks in that time. Mike Scott, who only played three minutes on Friday night, received 22 minutes of playing time against the Hornets and responded with 14 points on 5-for-7 shooting. Jeff Teague had 10 assists in only 21 minutes on the court, but he also had four turnovers. With 2-for-7 shooting, he was really the only Atlanta starter that played “poorly”.
The Hawks have finished their four-in-five stretch with a 3-1 record, improving to 9-6 overall. Atlanta will have a couple of days off until they face the Boston Celtics in Philips on Tuesday. They will then play on the road the next night in Miami and on Friday in Brooklyn.