Recap of the Hawks vs. Pistons game on 1-4-13
The Atlanta Hawks lost to the Detroit Pistons 85-84 on the road. This was the first game of a back-to-back set for the Hawks. This was also the third and final game of a three-game road trip for the Hawks. With the loss, the Hawks dropped to 20-11 on the season, 1-1 in the regular season series with the Pistons, 0-1 in their back-to-back set, and 1-2 on their road trip. The starters for the Hawks were Jeff Teague, Louis Williams, and Kyle Korver in the backcourt, and Josh Smith and Al Horford in the frontcourt. Devin Harris (sore left foot), Anthony Morrow (right hip strain), and Johan Petro (flu) were not with the team. The leading scorer for the Hawks was Josh Smith, with a game-high-tying 20 points. Al Horford added a double-double, with 18 points and 15 boards. Louis Williams contributed 17 points and eight assists. Kyle Korver scored 10 points and dished out five assists. The leading scorer for the Pistons was Austin Daye, with a game-high-tying 20 points. In the first quarter, Al Horford and Josh Smith scored all of the Hawks' points, and the Hawks trailed 25-20 at the end of one. In the second quarter, the Hawks were held to just 16 points, and they trailed 51-36 at the break. In the third quarter, the Pistons reached their largest lead of the game at 19, but the Hawks got back within 12 heading into the final frame. In the fourth quarter, the Pistons extended their lead back up to 17, but the Hawks reeled off a 16-0 run to get within one with 3:13 to play in regulation. Rodney Stuckey's layup got the Pistons back up three, but Al Horford answered with a three to tie it... ...or so we thought. The officials reviewed the shot, ruled it a two, and shaved off a point from the Hawks, so they trailed by one. Jeff Teague stole an inbounds pass on the Pistons' next possession. Louis Williams potentially game-winning corner three was blocked by Andre Drummond, and the Hawks lost by one. I think there were a couple of key reasons the Hawks lost. First off, they shot just 12-for-20 at the charity stripe. Had they made just one more free throw, they would've gone into OT. Had they made two more, they would've won. This has been a problem for the Hawks all year long, as they have the third lowest free-throw percentage in the NBA. Secondly, they didn't crash the boards. I give them a little bit of slack since Josh Smith went down in the third (he returned for the final possession of the game) and since Johan Petro was out, but they have to do a better job rebounding the basketball as a team. Tough loss for the Hawks to cap off their road trip.