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Hawks will go with small lineup against big Nuggets

The Atlanta Hawks will send out a small lineup of Jeff Teague, Devin Harris, DeShawn Stevenson, Josh Smith, and Al Horford against the length of the Denver Nuggets. Denver will start Ty Lawson, Andre Iguodala, Danilo Gallinari, Kenneth Faried, and Timofey Mozgov. Aside from the 5-11 Lawson, every player in the Nuggets lineup is over 6-6 and will create a number of mismatches defensively for the Hawks, but Atlanta will hope to create their own mismatches by using their speed. Atlanta should look to the pick-and-roll to make Mozgov move away from the rim. Expect Al Horford to try and take advantage of Mozgov's lack of speed by rolling hard and also trying to take him off the dribble when in the high post and away from the basket.

Devin Harris has a tough task with Iguodala, one of the top on-ball defenders in the league, but lately Harris has been used mostly as a perimeter shooter and floor spacer in the half-court, his best effect has come in transition. Atlanta will need to push the pace against the slower, longer Nuggets, while being relatively strong on the glass. Atlanta is 8-2 when they keep their opponent from out rebounding them by more than nine (1-3 when out-rebounded by 10+). The Nuggets dominate on the offensive glass and lead the league in that category, so the onus will be on every player to box out and ensure they limit the Nuggets to one shot per offensive trip.