The biggest story tonight was seeing Paul Millsap make his preseason debut. He was the only Hawks starter to see action, and he easily played to the expectations that he has set so far in Atlanta. More importantly, he also looked completely healthy.
Millsap scored a team-high 19 points, recorded seven assists, and made two of his three 3-point attempts. He looked healthy throughout, and overcame some early misses to finish with this total in just over 19 minutes of play.
Beyond Millsap, the Hawks relied mostly on rookies and training camp invitees. Will Bynum, Taurean Prince, and DeAndre Bembry all played extended minutes. Bynum still seems like an extremely long shot to make the roster, but Bembry and Prince’s development in these preseason games has been very enjoyable to watch.
Even though this was essentially a collection of backups and prospects tonight, the Hawks played well on defense (only allowing 95 points). On the offensive end, the team struggled at times, though, finishing with a field goal percentage of just over 40. However, the Hawks did shoot 37% from 3-point range, which is encouraging.
Interestingly, Thabo Sefolosha went 3-4 from behind the arc, an impressive showing for a player who has built up his reputation based on defensive prowess. Sefolosha is typically a fairly limited offensive player, but his 15 total points tonight could be encouraging if he is able to replicate anything close to this performance.
Overall, this was a good showing from the Hawks. We’ve reached the point of the preseason where everyone is ready for some games that actually matter, but there was plenty to like for Atlanta fans from tonight’s game.
The preseason continues on Tuesday night in Atlanta against the New Orleans Pelicans.