A playoff team’s bench can make or break their chances of advancing to the next round. What are the Atlanta Hawks and Washington Wizards’ benches doing right or wrong?
After two games, the Washington Wizards are up two games to none on the Atlanta Hawks in the first round of the 2017 Playoffs. As the 4th seed, the Wizards played their first two games at home, and retained their homecourt advantage, winning both games at home.
The Hawks shot 24.4 percent from the three-point line during the first two games and only shot 42 percent from the field.
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Dwight Howard is averaging a series-high 10.5 rebounds but scored a total of 15 points in the first two games. Tim Hardaway Jr. shot 28 percent over the first two games and has never taken the game over the way that he showcased he could during the regular season.
The starters in the series have played up to expectations, aside from Howard, Hardaway, and Otto Porter Jr., who is shooting 38.5 percent from the field and only 20 percent from the three-point line.
With both teams having relatively talented starting fives, the benches have had the opportunity to change the series. To this point, no reserve has made an extreme impact on the series but have played their roles in a semi-respectable manner. Of the ten bench players that played in both games, eight average at least four points.
How has each reserve impacted the series over the first two games?