This is the final time the Hawks and Cavaliers will face off before the start of the postseason. The Hawks clinched a playoff berth on Saturday thanks to a surprising loss by the Bulls against the Nets.
The Hawks come into this one having won their past two games in a row, one on the road against the Cavs while shorthanded. They’ve dealt with a handful of injuries the past week, but seem to be getting healthy at just the right time. The Cavaliers on the other hand, had been winners of four consecutive games before their loss to Atlanta on Friday.
Kent Bazemore, Malcolm Delaney, Kris Humphries, Paul Millsap, and Dennis Schröder are all probable for the game. Thabo Sefolosh will be out with a right groin strain. That’s a much more promising look than Friday’s, when Bazemore, Howard, Millsap, Schröder, and Sefolosha were out. Yet the Hawks still got the job done on the road. You would hope that would mean Sunday at home would be no problem, but this is the Cavaliers.
Cavaliers head coach Tyronn Lue was not happy with his team’s performance last time around, and said after the game via the Associated Press, "Obviously a bad performance," Lue said. He would later add, "By that time they already had confidence. That's who we've been. That's who we are. I hate it. These games like this come back and bite you, especially down the stretch when you're trying to get some rest. Trying to hold onto that No. 1 seed and getting rest and you come out and have a performance like this, it's not good."
Based on Lue’s comments, we should expect a different performance out of the Cavaliers. At the very least, their energy will be better than what it was on Friday.
Game Date/Time: Sunday, April 9, 3:30 p.m. ET
Location: Philips Arena, Atlanta, GA
TV: Fox Sports Southeast
Radio: 92.9 “The Game” FM