Atlanta Hawks: 4 Notable Storylines Following Dominant First Game

Trae Young #11 of the Atlanta Hawks (Photo by Brian Sevald/NBAE via Getty Images)
Trae Young #11 of the Atlanta Hawks (Photo by Brian Sevald/NBAE via Getty Images) /
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Atlanta Hawks
Atlanta Hawks (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images) /

Defense… Actually Good?

Last season, the Atlanta Hawks defense was (ahem) subpar, to say the least. Trae Young was a complete sieve on that end, and John Collins was not particularly dominant on that side of the ball either. This year, both Young and Collins seem to be vastly improve on the less glamorous side, and the entire team seems to be a bit more in sync on defense.

Perhaps it’s a personnel issue, as rookie Cam Reddish and De’Andre Hunter provided remarkably consistent defense throughout the night.

Rookie Impacts

Speaking of the rookies, while their defense might be the headliner, they also showcased some offensive skills. Reddish only logged 1 point, but he wasn’t forcing the issue on offense and his shot continues to look beautiful as it leaves his hand.

Hunter, on the other hand, had a tremendous night on offense with 14 points on 5 of 8 shooting, including 2 of 3 from deep with 2 rebounds and a +12 in on/off rating. Again, Hunter’s defense was elite.

Bruno Fernando, who only played 14 minutes, was very active in his limited playing time – notching 7 points (including 1 of 1 from deep) with 3 rebounds, 2 assists and a +7 on/off rating. Fernando was the first big man off the bench, which doesn’t bode well for Damian Jones going forward.