Hawks vs. Cavaliers - Recap
The Atlanta Hawks lost to the Cleveland Cavaliers 99-83 on the road. This was the second game of a back-to-back set for the Hawks. With the loss, the Hawks dropped to 20-14 on the season, 1-2 in the regular season series with the Cavaliers, and 0-2 in their back-to-back set. This was the Hawks' fourth-straight loss. The starters for the Hawks were Jeff Teague and Kyle Korver in the backcourt, Josh Smith and Al Horford at the two forward spots, and Zaza Pachulia at center. Devin Harris returned after missing 11-straight games with a sore left foot, but Anthony Morrow (right hip strain) and DeShawn Stevenson (sore knee) did not play. The leading scorer for the Hawks was Josh Smith, with 17 points. He also grabbed eight boards and blocked six shots. Jeff Teague added 15 points and eight assists. Al Horford contributed 14 points and five rebounds. Kyle Korver scored 12 points nd grabbed seven boards. The leading scorer for the Cavaliers was Kyrie Irving, with a game-high 33 points. In the first quarter, the Cavaliers hit 7-for-10 from distance, and the Hawks trailed by one after one when Kyrie Irving nailed a buzzer-beater from three to end the quarter. In the second quarter, the Hawks were held to just 12 points, and they trailed by nine at the break. In the third quarter, the Hawks got out on an 11-2 run, but the Cavaliers answered back with a 26-12 run behind Irving's 18 points in the third. In the fourth quarter, with the Cavaliers just continuing to add to their lead, Coach Larry Drew cleared his bench at the 3:27 mark, and the Hawks lost by 16. I think there were a couple key reasons the Hawks lost. First off, they got to the free-throw line just five times, making just two, for a revolting 40% for the game. Josh Smith even airballed one. The two makes is an NBA season-low. Secondly, the Hawks just aren't playing like they were earlier in the season. The same energy and enthusiasm and teamwork aren't there. The Hawks need to get back on track. Tough loss for the Hawks.