Hawks Losing Streak Clipped

The Atlanta Hawks are currently the 10th seed in the eastern conference, with only 16 games remaining, every game is just as important as the next.  

The Hawks came out on top in the matchup against the Los Angeles Clippers, 112-106. The matchup was very close throughout, but the Hawks were able to seal the deal late in the fourth quarter. 

Trae Young put up another double-double tonight, adding to his collection of superstar performances as he finished with 27 points, 11 assists and five rebounds. Young relied on Clint Capela as he put up a double-double of his own. Capela capped his night off with an efficient 14 points and 11 rebounds on the night. It’s something odd about this team and the fascination they have with putting up great statistics each game. 

Kevin Heurter had a major role in tonight’s game as he played 36 of 48 minutes. In that time he scored 16 points and grabbed eight rebounds. Teammate John Collins hasn’t looked like his former self since returning from injury, but he still managed to have a solid game tonight as he finished the game with nine points and three rebounds in only 23 minutes played. 

The first half was a tight one as both teams were neck and neck heading into the third quarter.  

Trae Young took advantage of his mismatches in the first half, especially when guarded by Isaiah Hartenstein. Hartenstein was in the process of being mixed in a blender by Young but was eventually substituted out as those deadly pick-and-rolls landed him three fouls early on.

Marcus Morris Sr. started off the game hot, but as tempers flared he was eventually hit with a double-technical foul leading to his ejection from tonight’s game.

The game remained close all the way up until the final minute. The score was 110-106 when Reggie Jackson took a contested three from 27 feet in an attempt to make it a one-possession game. He missed and at that point, fans knew the Hawks had sealed the deal for the night. 

Despite some lackadaisical moments on defense, the Hawks played very efficiently as a team on offense tonight. Coach Nate McMillan was very impressed with how the team got the job done tonight. 

“We did a good job with movement and pacing the floor tonight,” said Coach McMillan. “We also did a good job with getting to our spots and our space. We had a couple of shots right as the clock was expiring and Kevin knocked some down. Those are the types of breaks you need sometimes.” 

As the regular season winds down, the team’s rotation has seemed to have changed. Delon Wright’s minutes have been cut, leaving the Hawks with a solid nine-man rotation. Leading the team in minutes per game, Trae Young knows cutting minutes from guys who are used to being in the rotation is a part of the game. 

“You’ve got to have that playoff mentality throughout the year,” said Young. “All the coaches in the league are slimming down their rotations. Coach [McMillan] already told us this was going to happen earlier on in the season.” 

Minutes being cut, rotations changing and the play-in tournament arriving in exactly one month, the Hawks must stay focused on the task at hand by finishing the season strong.