The Atlanta Hawks were very keen on getting Danilo Gallinari during the last offseason. As the OKC Thunder conducted their fire sale, they traded Gallinari for two second-round draft picks and created a large trade exception for themselves.
The Hawks got one of the sweetest shooting big men on the planet and, except for a stroke of misfortune where he stood on another players’ foot, they would have him well entrenched in their rotation. While he is most probably not going to reach the All-Star level of Clint Capela, Gallinari showed against the Mavericks what he can do for this team.
Trae Young was given two quick fouls before the first six minutes of the game had passed. He had to go to the bench and Rajon Rondo replaced him. At this time Gallinari came onto the court which was a blessing for the Hawks.
The Atlanta Hawks look better with Danilo Gallinari on the court.
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When Gallinari came onto the court the Mavericks were looking the stronger of the two teams. However, Gallinari soon changed all that. He danced with the ball in front of Willie Cauley-Stein and hit a beautiful 3-point shot over the big man.
He then made some good moves inside including one late shot-clock play where he cut along the baseline when Rondo drove the ball. Gallinari received it in the mid-range and made the bucket as the shot clock was almost at zero.
Gallinari also did what he does best and that made it to the free-throw line. He scored on all three levels and helped the Hawks be in the contest at the first break, scoring 10 points off the bench. In a game that looked similar to the first Charlotte Hornets game, Gallinari was the difference.
The Mavericks were stopping Young at the timeline and getting the ball out of his hands. Without Young being a factor the game looked like it could get away for the Hawks, as it did against Charlotte. The difference this time was the shooting of the veteran. Gallinari finished with 19 points for the game.
This is where Gallinari is going to make such a difference for the Hawks. He always makes things happen. This means that the opposition is going to have to spread their defense, giving the Hawks more avenues to score. Just think how good this team is going to be when they have all their players on the court, fully fit and firing.