Atlanta Hawks Game Preview: 3rd Race with Pacers

John Collins #20 of the Atlanta Hawks (Photo by Scott Cunningham/NBAE via Getty Images)
John Collins #20 of the Atlanta Hawks (Photo by Scott Cunningham/NBAE via Getty Images) /

The Atlanta Hawks will play their final game of 2018 on New Year’s Eve, facing off against the Pacers in Indiana.

It’ll be the second match up between the teams this week, and third on the season. The Pacers are 2-0, but the Atlanta Hawks were right in both of those games.

The first time the squads faced off,  the Hawks led by 9 at the half before rookie Aaron Holiday caught fire in the second half, scoring 12 in the final two quarters to help drown the Hawks. 5 days before this game, the Pacers came to Atlanta, and despite a 12-2 start and 32 points from Bazemore, Indiana battled back to win, 129-121.

Besides Baze’s 32 their was a couple other notable performances last Wednesday. John Collins recorded a double-double with 21-11 and Dewayne Dedmon’s 18 points were complimented with 15 boards. Trae Young had 17 points and 9 assists, and made both of his three-pointer attempts.

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DeAndre’ Bembry had one of his rougher games on the season, scoring just 5 points in 27 minutes and committed 4 turnovers.

The Hawks may have rebounded we’ll but couldn’t keep up defensively, as big men Thad Young and Domantas Sabonis combined for 40 points.

Dewayne Dedmon, Alex Len and Taurean Prince are all listed as day-to-day, and it’ll be interesting to see if they can rebound from last time’s porous D without the former two.

The Pacers will be coming into this game red hot, winning 11-of-13, and looking to win 5 straight to enter the new year.

Victor Oladipo has taken a slight step back from his All-Star season last year, but is still averaging just under 20 points and 6 assists per game. Whether it’s Kevin Huerter or Kent Bazemore on him, he’ll be a tough match up.

For the Hawks, this will mark the start of a road stretch, as including Monday’s game in Indy, 6 of Atlanta’s next 7 will be away from State Farm Arena. They’ve won 3 straight on the road and will definitely look to keep that going.

Next. John Collins Deserves All-Star Buzz. dark

A rare afternoon game on a weekday, the game is slated for tip-off at 3:00 p.m. EST.