Atlanta came out of the gates slowly Tuesday against Miami but displayed just how explosive offensively as they turned a 19-point first quarter deficit into a 19 point lead in the second half. Most importantly for Atlanta, this was the first preseason game where their full compliment of players was healthy and at the disposal of Mike Budenholzer.
Here are more thoughts from Tuesday's win:
Paul Millsap shakes off the rust
After Atlanta fell behind by 19 points early they needed a spark offensively to get themselves going. Millsap provided that spark scoring 12 points in the second quarter to get the Hawks back within striking distance. He added seven more in the third as the Hawks took control of the game giving him 23 on the night in just over 25 minutes. Millsap came in having gone just 4-13 from the field while playing what amounted to limited minutes in the first two preseason games.
Kyle Korver snaps back to form
Kyle Korver looked a bit out of sync in his first preseason outing but he looked much more comfortable in Tuesday's win over the Heat. Korver knocked down five three-pointers and finished with 17 points. Three of those three-point buckets came in the third quarter as the Hawks outscored the Heat 43-18 to take control of the game. How good was Atlanta in the third? They connected on 14-22 field goal attempts in the period including 6-9 from three-point range. The Hawks assisted on 10 of those 14 made baskets and turned the ball over just three times in the period.
Another solid game off the bench by Thabo Sefolosha
Signing Thabo Sefolosha over the summer might not have been a news worthy addition to the Hawks but he looks like he will be a solid contributor to the team this season. Sefolosha continued his string of good preseason performances Tuesday night finishing with eight points, five rebounds, four assists and two blocks in just under 18 minutes.
Mike Muscala continues solid work on the boards
Muscala returned to the bench Tuesday night and didn't get into the game until the second half but finished the night with five rebounds in just over 11 minutes. He has done excellent work on the boards this preseason averaging just under seven per game. Mike Budenholzer is going to have some decisions to make in regards to his rotation once the regular season gets here but Muscala hasn't hurt his chances for playing time.
Al Horford, Pero Antic and Kent Bazemore make preseason debuts
Nothing note worthy from Al Horford's 11 minute stint against the Heat but it was great to see the big fella back on the floor playing for the Hawks. Horford finished with two points, one rebound and two assists but came away healthy by all indications. For Horford its about getting back on the court and getting comfortable while mixing it up in the trenches. With four preseason games remaining Atlanta will be cautious but expect Horford to exert himself more as the regular season nears.
Pero Antic might not like playing with the protective mask to guard his broken nose but he performed well with it in his preseason debut. Antic finished with nine points and three rebounds in 11 minutes against the Heat. Seven of his nine points came in that decisive third quarter. Kent Bazemore played just six minutes and went scoreless in his debut but looked ok physically which is good news. He finished 0-2 from the field with a pair of turnovers.