Archives For THJ

In 2015, the Atlanta Hawks met the Washington Wizards in the Eastern Conference semi-finals after both teams knocked off the Brooklyn Nets and the Toronto Raptors in the first round respectively. The Wizards took Game 1 in Atlanta but an injury to John Wall’s hand marred the victory. Wall would sit out Games 2, 3, and 4 with the injury before returning for Game 5 but clearly wasn’t 100%. The series was tied at 2-2 when Wall returned and the Wizards would go on to drop Games 5 and 6 as the Hawks advanced to the Eastern Conference Finals.

While the Hawks celebrated their trip to the Conference Finals, the Wizards were left to wonder what could’ve been had John Wall been healthy. The Wizards believed, had Wall been healthy, they would’ve advanced to the Conference Finals.

“In my opinion, we should’ve won 4-1.”

— Bradley Beal

“You take away Al Horford or Jeff Teague from their team for three games, the series would be totally different. I’m a big key to this team. This team can still do great things without me. Those guys competed and gave themselves a chance to win. But I feel like if I was there we would have had a better opportunity of winning the series and probably could have went up 2-0 on the road like the Toronto series and came home with some momentum, and tried to close these guys out. But everything happens for a reason.”

— John Wall

“Healthy John. That’s all we’re missing. I think if he played all the games, I think we’d still be in the season today. That’s my opinion.”

— Marcin Gortat

And to close out:

“I give them credit. I always give a team credit. I give Atlanta credit. That’s a tremendous team. They’ve been playing like that all year. They’ve been playing great basketball. But whenever you’re playing against me, even if you beat me, I’m a sore loser. They didn’t really beat us.”

— Bradley Beal

“They didn’t really beat us”…

Those quotes came a few days after the Wizards exited the playoffs but I can’t imagine those feelings are much different now. The Wizards’ feelings about the 2015 playoffs are clear.

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The Atlanta Hawks lost a tightly contested game against the Chicago Bulls in the Windy City on Saturday evening, 104-106. The Bulls were led by Jimmy Butler’s 33 points that included two game-winning free throws that put the Bulls in front with 3 seconds left. Rajon Rondo added a season-high 25 points and 11 rebounds. For the Hawks, they were led by Dennis Schröder’s 29 points. 

Standings watch

With this loss, the Hawks now occupy the 6-seed in the Eastern Conference, just a game behind the Milwaukee Bucks. Meanwhile behind the Hawks, there’s now a three-way tie for the 7-seed with Indiana, Miami and Chicago all knotted up at 37-39.

 

The Hawks have six games remaining. 

Missed opportunity

The first half of this game was a bit of a snoozer. the point guard battle of Rajon Rondo and Dennis Schroder proved to be the only real entertaining aspect of this game. Neither team was playing particularly well. That all changed in the third quarter.

The Bulls ran out to a 10 point lead before the Hawks, behind some of the best basketball they’ve played this season and scored 38 points in the third quarter which was capped off by this buzzer-beating three from Kent Bazemore.

This was part of a 38-18 run that would see the Hawks take a 10 point lead of their own with 9:31 left in the fourth quarter

The Bulls hovered within eight points for the next few minutes but after they came within five, the Hawks reeled off another four unanswered to take a 100-91 lead with 4:54 remaining, leading to a timeout. The Bulls responded with this lovely out-of-the-timeout play that results in a three in the corner from Denzel Valentine that gave the Bulls life. 

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Scott Cunningham/NBAE via Getty Images

The Atlanta Hawks dropped another game in their six game home stand, this time a last second winner from Glen Robinson III pushing the Pacers over the finish line 97-96 on Sunday afternoon. Paul George led the Pacers with a game-high 34 points. For the Hawks, they were led by Paul Millsap’s 23 points and Tim Hardaway Jr.’s 24 points.

Keys plays down the stretch cost Atlanta

Let’s get this straight…the Hawks did not deserve to win this game. They were very poor in the second and third quarters and, really, had no business winning this game. The Hawks also conceded another 15 three-pointers and allowed Paul George to go for 34 points in the first three quarters. They played that poorly. That being said…they should have won this game.

The last minute and what transpired in it proved to be decisive but, first, some backstory…

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Sean Meagher | The Oregonian/OregonLive

The Atlanta Hawks returned to winning ways with a 109-104 overtime victory against the Portland Trail Blazers on Monday night at the Moda Center. The Blazers, as they so often have been, were led by Damian Lillard’s and C.J. McCollum’s 21 and 26 points respectively. The Hawks were led by Tim Hardaway Jr.’s team high 25 points while Paul Millsap added 21 points and Dennis Schröder added 22 points.

Paul “Clutch” Millsap takes the Hawks to overtime and beyond

This was not the prettiest offensive game for the Hawks but they managed to slow down the Blazers’ offense and recovered from a double digit deficit to give themselves a chance to win this game. Some great defense, after a few agonising offensive rebounds for the Blazers, by Tim Hardaway Jr. on C.J. McCollum — followed by a defensive rebound by Prince — gave the Hawks the opportunity to possibly win the game or take the game to overtime.

People give THJ a lot of stick for his defense (sometimes it’s warranted) but give him credit here.

However, Atlanta still found themselves trailing by two points with just 2.2 seconds remaining, in need of a bucket to save this game. Enter, Paul Millsap.

At. The. Buzzer.

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Rocky Widner/NBAE via Getty Images

The Atlanta Hawks dropped the first game of their three game road trip against Sacramento Kings on Friday night, 108-107. The Kings had three players who scored 22 points: Darren Collison, Ben McLemore and DeMarcus Cousins. For the Hawks, they also had three players who scored 20 or more points in the form of Dennis Schröder (20), Paul Millsap (25) and Tim Hardaway Jr. (28).

Hawks on the other side of a 20 point comeback 

The Hawks, twice this season, have recovered from a 20 point deficit and emerge with a victory, but last night they got a taste of their own medicine. The Hawks were seemingly in full control of this game as they stood tall with a 22 point lead (71-49) with 7:02 remaining in the third. The Kings looked defeated and their star man, DeMarcus Cousins, looked a man out of sorts. The Hawks should’ve absolutely closed this game out. So, how did the Kings do it?

The Kings found a lineup that worked and just rolled with it for, pretty much, the rest of the game. It was that 4-man lineup of Darren Collison, Ben McLemore, Matt Barnes, Anthony Tolliver that just got things done for the Kings. Together, they scored 43 points on 58% shooting from the field, shot 60% from behind the arc and registered a plus/minus rating of plus-10. They also registered an offensive rating of 135, a defensive rating of 102 and a net rating of +32 in 16 minutes of play.

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(AP Photo/John Amis)

The Atlanta Hawks brushed aside the Orlando Magic, 113-86, on Saturday evening at Philips Arena in a wire-to-wire victory. The Magic were led by Aaron Gordon’s 16 points while both Jeff Green and Elfrid Payton added 12 points. For the Hawks, five players scored in double digits, Paul Millsap leading the way with 21 points in three quarters.

Dennis Schröder registered a double-double, 17 points and 10 assists, one of which was an absolute beauty.

Oh, yes.

Hawks’ heavy lifting in first half leads them to victory

How long have folks wanted to see the Hawks actually start a game with energy? Well, fans got their wish last night, the Hawks flew out the traps, making 13 of their first 15 shots. The Hawks quickly ran out to a 13-4 lead forcing Magic coach Frank Vogel into a timeout, one of the many timeouts he would call in the first half. The Hawks would finish the first quarter with 35 points on 68% shooting while assisting on 12 of their 15 made baskets. For reference, the Hawks registered just 13 total assists last Wednesday against the Miami Heat, so it was good to see the ball moving as it was.

The Hawks built upon their 11 point lead in the second quarter, stretching it to 17 points by the 5:30 mark before making a 20 point game and then, just to cap off a great half for the Hawks on both sides of the floor, the Hawks ended the quarter on a 9-0 run behind a Tim Hardaway Jr. three-pointer to take a 26 point lead into the locker room at the half.

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Bill Baptist/NBAE/Getty Images

The Atlanta Hawks won a comeback thriller in Houston on Thursday night in their second meeting of the season against the Houston Rockets, 113-108. James Harden led the Rockets with 41 points while Clint Capella added another 22 points on 9-of-11 shooting to go along with nine rebounds. 

THJ’s Q4 explosion helps Hawks recover from 20 point deficit

Things were beginning to look a little dicey in the fourth quarter for the Hawks. Having survived the Rockets’ initial surge in the third quarter, the Rockets took a 13 point lead into the final period before extending that lead — behind an 11-4 run — to a game-high 20 points with 8:27 remaining in the fourth quarter. Time for the Hawks to empty the bench, right? Wrong. Enter Tim Hardaway Jr. Timmy exploded for 23 points in the final period on his way to career high 33 points on 12-of-18 shooting and 4-of-9 from behind the arc, lifting the Hawks — behind a 40 point fourth quarter — to an unlikely victory.

“Obviously Tim Hardaway was special on offense.” — Coach Mike Budenholzer

That he sure was… THJ capped off his 23 point quarter with an incredible dunk with Ryan Anderson and Clint Capella both near the rim:

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Oscar Baldizon/NBAE/Getty Images

The Atlanta Hawks dropped the first game of their back-to-back road trip against the Miami Heat on Wednesday night, falling 93-116. Goran Dragić scored 27 points while Dion Waiters added 20 points as the Heat stretched their win streak to nine games.

Hawks outplayed, outhustled 

After playing a gruelling 4OT game on Sunday, the Hawks gave their players both Monday and Tuesday off in order to recover. Despite that, the Hawks showed poor energy and effort compared to their division rivals, the Heat seemingly winning all of the 50-50 balls and just outhustled the Hawks. James Johnson in particular was running riot and no Hawk could match his energy and tenacity. James Johnson. When James Johnson is outhustling your entire team, I’m going to say that’s a problem.

The Hawks had started this game off O.K. but three consecutive threes for the Heat forced Bud into a timeout. The Heat took a seven point lead into the second quarter and continued to outhustle and outplay the Hawks in the second quarter behind an 11-0 run. The Heat would take a 15 point lead into the locker room at the half before stretching their lead to 20 points in the third and, with a game against the Rockets looming in the very near future, Bud decided to wave the white flag before the third quarter was even over. And that was, pretty much, all she wrote. There was some interesting drama in garbage time but we’ll get to that soon.

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The Atlanta Hawks just about escaped Philips Arena with a victory over the Chicago Bulls on Friday night, 103-93. Jimmy Butler led the Bulls with 19 points on 6-of-8 shooting, one of five Bulls who scored in double digits.

A great start and a real messy ending

What a game this was.

The Hawks blew the Bulls out of the water in the first quarter, outscoring the Bulls 35-13 in a quarter that was capped by a buzzer-beating three by Tim Hardaway Jr. followed by a shimmy.

“I like the ball in my hand in that situation. I kind of like to shoot far, half-court shots, when the clock is running down. I have confidence in myself that every shot I shoot is going in. Thankfully it went in.” — Tim Hardaway Jr.

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Scott Cunningham/NBAE/Getty Images

The Atlanta Hawks’ seven game winning streak came to an end on Friday night as they dropped an entertaining game against the Boston Celtics, 103-101. Isaiah Thomas led the Celtics with 28 points — including the game winner — while Kelly Olynyk poured out 26 points off the bench.

Look who’s back

We had to wait until January but last night the Hawks finally got to see Al Horford return to Atlanta for the first time as a Celtic. When he was introduced, and again throughout the game, there were quite a number of boos for Horford, something that took him by surprise.

“They were unexpected. I don’t want to say anything, but it is what it is. I know there’s a lot of fans out there that appreciated my time here, and I appreciate them.” — Al Horford

The Hawks did have a video tribute lined up and it was shown at the end of the first quarter. Horford was given a standing ovation.

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