Hawks vs. Nets - Recap
The Atlanta Hawks lost to the Brooklyn Nets 94-89 on the road. This was the second game of a home-and-home set with the Nets for the Hawks. This was also the first game of a back-to-back set for the Hawks. With the loss, the Hawks dropped to 22-17 on the season, 1-1 in the regular season series with the Nets, 1-1 in their home-and-home set, and 0-1 in their back-to-back set. The loss also snapped the Hawks' six-game winning streak against the Nets. The starters for the Hawks were Jeff Teague, Devin Harris, and Kyle Korver in the backcourt, and Josh Smith and Zaza Pachulia in the frontcourt. Al Horford (sore hamstring and calf) did not play. DeShawn Stevenson (knee) and Anthony Morrow (sore lower back) did not travel with the team to Brooklyn. The leading scorer for the Hawks was Jeff Teague, with 21 points. He also dished out 10 assists, giving him a double-double on the night. Devin Harris added 17 points. Josh Smith contributed 12 points and nine boards, nearly registering a double-double. Kyle Korver had 11 points. The leading scorer for the Nets was Deron Williams, with a game-high 24 points. In the first quarter, Jeff Teague scored nine points for the Hawks, but they ended the first tied at 29. This was the 10th straight road game in which the Hawks have allowed 25+ points in the first quarter. In the second quarter, Louis Williams sprained his right knee when he tried to take the ball to the cup in transition. He hopped out of bounds and was taken back to the locker room in a wheel chair. He did not return. I wish him luck in returning to the court quickly and back healthy. The Hawks and Nets each scored 20 points in the second, and the game was tied 49-49 at the break. In the third quarter, the Hawks and Nets scored 25 apiece, and the game was tied 74-74 heading into the final frame. In the fourth quarter, the Nets went up by eight, but the Hawks responded with a 7-0 run to cut the Nets' lead to 90-89 with 1:02 to play in regulation. Unfortunately, then Deron Williams hit two free-throws, Brook Lopez blocked a runner by Jeff Teague, Deron Williams hit two more free-throws, and the Hawks lost by five. I think the key reason the Hawks lost was that they went 5/22 from the field in the fourth quarter. The Hawks have to be better at closing out games. I understand that the players might have been tired by then, since injuries forced some of them to play extended minutes, but this has been a trend all season, even when the Hawks were more healthy than they were in this one. Tough loss for the Hawks.