The Hawks can’t get out of their own way.
Every run seems punctuated with defensive ineptitude, every quarter seems closed with a sluggish submission, every game seems lost by the fourth quarter– the Hawks just can’t stop themselves from tripping over their own feet.
Game 2 against Indiana was more of the same.
The issue is not the ability to score points, it is getting stops. In the second quarter of Wednesday night’s game, the Hawks starters returned (with the abysmal bench lineup returning to their seats), and the offense was a buzz saw. Indiana could not contain Teague in transition or stop Smith from making plays in the halfcourt. Smith’s foul trouble quickly turned the tables on Atlanta, but the Hawks were and have been successful against the NBA’s top defense, an accomplishment worth noting. But, something you’d rather go unnoticed is the fact that Atlanta’s depth and inability to field a respectable lineup for 48 minutes has harpooned their chances of stealing home court advantage.