The Atlanta Hawks continue to struggle to put points on the board as they dropped a 91-86 decision to the Brooklyn Nets. Atlanta has now lost three straight and are just 2-4 since Al Horford's season ending injury.
In the preview I talked about the importance of Atlanta's pace and how it would be to their advantage to push the tempo. That was clear in the second quarter when the Hawks roared ahead, outscoring Brooklyn 31-19 to take a 52-46 lead at the half.
Things slowed way down in the third as Brooklyn opened the second half with a 14-0 run while Atlanta went scoreless for the first five minutes of the period. The Hawks would make a run in the fourth and used a 7-0 run of their own to retake a 78-77 lead with 6:36 remaining.
Brooklyn responded with five straight points including a three from Joe Johnson as the Hawks turned the ball over on their next two possessions. Atlanta would remain close and a Jeff Teague three-pointer pulled them to within two with 1:31 remaining. However, Mirza Teletovic's three from the corner with just over 44 seconds remaining proved to be the back breaker for the Hawks.
More ugly numbers from Atlanta's offense, who shot just 38.6 percent to go along with 18 turnovers. Atlanta struggled with Brooklyn's size at times but indecision and bad spacing played a big part as well in the Hawks' struggles.
Jeff Teague and Paul Millsap finished with 16 points each to lead Atlanta but were a combined 9-27 from the field. Elton Brand played a season-high 29 minutes off the bench and finished with 10 points, seven rebounds and three blocks. DeMarre Carroll added 10 points and seven rebounds. Kyle Korver finished with seven points, seven rebounds and a team-best six assists but his only field goal was a first quarter three and he finished 1-5 from the field.
Joe Johnson led the way against his old club with 23 points on 10-22 shooting. Teletovic added 16 off the bench including 4-9 shooting from deep. Alan Anderson finished with 14 while Shaun Livingston had 12. The Nets started the game 1-13 from the three-point line but hit 7-14 attempts in the second half.
The Hawks return home still searching for answers but the schedule doesn't get any easier with games against the Indiana Pacers and the Houston Rockets later this week.