As a result of venue renovations, fans of the Atlanta Hawks were forced to wait just a bit longer for a home opener than other NBA teams. However, the wait comes to an end on Wednesday evening, as Trae Young and company play host to the Dallas Mavericks in front of a national television audience.
The Hawks enter this contest after their best performance of the brief season, as Young exploded for 35 points to aid in securing the team’s first victory on Sunday. Of course, the rookie point guard was not alone in performing at a high level and, in this particular contest, Atlanta is expected to welcome veteran big man Dewayne Dedmon back into the fold after a lengthy injury absence.
Unfortunately, the Hawks will not be at full strength in this spot, as John Collins, Justin Anderson and Daniel Hamilton remain unavailable due to injury. However, the home team should have the opportunity to compete at a high level here, as the Mavericks do not have an overwhelming talent advantage in front of what should be a high-energy crowd.
Quite obviously, the match-up between Young and fellow rookie Luka Doncic will garner all of the national headlines, as the two prospects were traded for one another (along with an all-important pick coming to Atlanta from Dallas) back in June. Both are off to strong starts, especially when compared to other members of the 2018 draft class, but overreactions will abound on either side and we’ll all be here to enjoy the show.
The good folks in Las Vegas install the Mavericks as small, 1.5-point favorites in this game, which isn’t a surprise given Atlanta’s national perception. Still, the presence of Dedmon should help to improve the team’s frontcourt performance and, as noted above, the Hawks should enjoy a real home-court advantage in front of what sets up as a packed house.
Stay tuned throughout the day for all the latest from the shiny conditions at State Farm Arena.
Game Date/Time: Wednesday, Oct. 24, 7:00 pm ET
Location: State Farm Arena
TV: ESPN, Fox Sports Southeast
Radio: 92.9 The Game (Atlanta); Hawks Radio Network
Streaming: WatchESPN, Fox Sports Go