ATLANTA – If you needed an indication that Kyle Korver means a lot to the Hawks, then you got it on Wednesday night. After stumbling in their last few games, the Hawks got their three point marksman back for the opening of the longest home stand for the Hawks, and it made a huge difference.
The Hawks started out with a three-pointer from Kyle Korver, and that was the shot that tied Dana Barros for first on the all-time list for consecutive games with a three at 89. The Hawks wouldn’t look back after that. They moved the ball extremely well, and the threes would rain all night long. The Hawks opened up the third quarter with 29 points.
The Hawks would go up by as many as 15 in the second, and they looked dominant. The ball was moving all over the court, and defensively, they held the Clippers to just 44 first half points. Paul Millsap was showing his versatility, and he dominated Blake Griffin. The Clippers made a run, but the Hawks maintained a 55-44 lead at the half.
It was a quiet night for Jeff Teague, and having him in foul trouble really hurt the offense in the third quarter. The Clippers were able to outscore the Hawks by two in the third, but overall, they kept moving the ball, and the lead stayed at nine. Paul Millsap would score 10 points in the third alone, and he played his best game as a Hawk. The lead would be 79-70 in favor of the Hawks heading into the fourth.
With Dennis Schröder in the D-League, and Jeff Teague in foul trouble, the ball was in Shelvin Mack’s hand in the fourth, and he responded. Overall, Mack finished 12 points, 5 assists, and 4 rebounds in 24 minutes of action. The game would get as close as five points in the final quarter, but the Hawks put their foot on the gas to end this one. Korver had a four point play late, and that would be the dagger.
Millsap finished with 25 points, 9 rebounds, and 6 assists, and he was all over the place. Horford finished with 21 and 9 of his own, and this was a great effort by the Hawks. When Horford and Millsap play like this, it opens up the offense, and the Hawks are a dangerous team. Korver had a season high 23 points and 6 three pointers, and it helped the Hawks on offense tremendously. Teague finished with 6 points and 6 assists, and his 5 fouls slowed him down all game long.
“I feel like the group tonight executed on both ends of the court, and they competed,” Mike Budenholzer said after the game, “That’s what you need to do to beat a good team. Tonight we beat a very good team.” Budenholzer talked about how he was happy for the team, and how he was pleased with the ball movement. This team showed how Budenholzer’s system can put them in good positions, and they had 28 assists on 42 made baskets tonight.
The Hawks came away with the 107-97 win, and they are now 10-10 on the season. They are back in action on Friday against Kyrie Irving and the Cavs in Atlanta.