Surely some will come with very reasoned.....ummm...reasons why the Hawks still won't win the series, but that's for Tuesday and Wednesday. Let's keep dwelling in the Game 1 goodness.
Leftover stats/notes that didn't make the Instant Reaction post:
Hawks shooting percentage in their own private winning time (2nd and 3rd quarters): 24-33/5-8/15-19, 68 points in 24 minutes. Ballgame.
I would expect to see more Quentin Richardson in Game 2, as Stan Van Gundy tries to find better defensive combinations than to have to switch Howard out on Horford away from the hoop and Jason Richardson to wear himself out trying to check Joe Johnson. I would expect to see more Q, but he might have cost himself by turning the ball over twice in 7 minutes.
Dwight Howard got Zaza'd in the third quarter. And yes, I did ask Zaza about that and the Hawks' defense overall, which I will have in a separate post as we head towards Game 2.
Joe Johnson made much quicker decisions when the Magic ran a double team at him. The Hawks, comparative to their normal passing out of doubles, were more crisp.
The Hawks had 5 turnovers in the first quarter and 3 the rest of the way. Big reason for building and holding that lead.
I made a note that said: I don't miss Vince Carter in these games. Would have been a killer third option, as he always was against the Hawks.
Jason Collins: 17 minutes, 6 fouls, 1 point, no rebounds, and one sweet step around steal. And yet, you still feel like he did his job.
Larry Drew worked the officials unmercifully on Howard's time in the lane, which worked as the Magic drew a few 3 second violations. Those helped Howard accumulate his total of (8) turnovers.
Side story to watch: With this loss and Howard's obvious solemn post game demeanor, will the Dwight to _______ start to really gather steam this round, and will that affect Orlando in a negative way?
Every Hawk I asked said they felt like Orlando's biggest adjustment in Game 2 is that they will be much, much more aggressive than they were tonight.
I can definitely see that, but the trades they made sent out a couple of the more physical players they had (Pietrus, Gortat) that gave Atlanta problems. I don't necessarily see Jason Richardson, Hedo Turkoglu, JJ Redick, and Gilbert Arenas being able to muster serious physicality. Maybe more Brandon Bass and Q. Richardson, but that's all I can come up with.