The Atlanta Hawks dropped to 6-20 on the season, as they fell to the Indiana Pacers 110-100 Friday night at State Farm Arena. The team’s home court woes continued in a similar fashion after returning back from its 136-102 defeat to the Milwaukee Bucks earlier this week.
The first half was dominated by the Pacers, which held a 15-point lead going into the half. Star point guard Trae Young struggled early on, scoring just a handful of times in the first half.
For Atlanta, it was all about rookie De’Andre Hunter, who lead the team in points, dropping 15, and minutes played, with 19, in the first half. Hunter finished the contest with a cool 21 points.
Cam Reddish shined late in the second quarter, as he came up with a steal and then hit Trae Young, who dashed down the court and laid the ball into the net. The Duke prospect continues to go through his rookie season ups and downs.
The second half started well for Young, who, after receiving a rebound, drained a classic three-pointer.
Jabari Parker also came out firing in the second half as he hit a three and then had a throw-down dunk on a fast break moments later.
Atlanta would outscore Indiana 35-23 in the third quarter, cutting the lead to just three points entering the final period of play.
Despite their third-quarter efforts, the Hawks were unable to capitalize on their scoring streaks, and the Pacers fired back, maintaining their lead and sealing the all-important victory.
Young seemed to go cold late in the game, and the 21-year-old didn’t mince words when evaluating his performance.
“I feel like I let my team down,” Young said. “I was getting wide-open looks and missing. Sometimes it’s like that. It sucks.”
Young continued to talk about his performance as one of Atlanta’s top players.
“We all fought so hard to get back into the game,” he said. “For me, trying to be one of the closers, I have to be better.”
Head coach Lloyd Pierce echoed similar thoughts after the game.
“When you’re 0-for-13 from three, it’s a tough night in general,” the coach said. “I don’t know if their defense really took us out of it. We just couldn’t capitalize on some of the offensive possessions we had in the first half.”
On the Pacers end of the court, it was T.J. Warren who lead the team in points with 18.
Doug McDermott also played a vital role in the Pacers win, hitting several clutch three’s. McDermott credited his play to the unselfishness of the team as a whole.
“Nobody cares who is scoring,” McDermott said. “We are all just about winning this year.”
The win keeps the Pacers at the number six seed in the Eastern Conference, as the team continues to chase a spot in the playoffs.
Although the Hawks were able to avoid a consecutive blowout, the players will undoubtedly want to improve on their performances, if they’re going to keep their slim, if still existent playoff hopes alive.
The Hawks will look to gain their mojo back as they welcome the Western Conference-leading Los Angeles Lakers Sunday night in Atlanta.