On a night where Trae Young’s homecoming and a face-off with old pal Dennis Schröder were the backdrop, the Atlanta Hawks fell short against the Oklahoma City Thunder.
The first quarter began with Oklahoma City jumping out to an early lead. The Hawks would respond with a nice 11-0 run to get back into the game. On the whole, ex-Hawks point guard Dennis Schroder was really a thorn in the side of his former team in the opening frame but Atlanta was able to keep up reasonably well through the latter half of the first.
Kent Bazemore put a bow on a fun back and forth quarter with a fadeaway jumper at the buzzer to carry the Hawks into the second quarter down just 28-26.
For as fun and close as the first quarter was, the second quarter was the exact opposite. Atlanta did not shoot well at all and the Thunder seemingly couldn’t miss from beyond the arc as Paul George, Russell Westbrook and Alex Abrines began to demolish the Hawks’ perimeter defense. Alex Len had a nice stretch near the end of the second where he hit a couple of threes and played solid defense, but not much else was going well for the visitors, who saw OKC score 38 in the second including a 20-3 run to take a 20-point lead into the break.
The third quarter actually started off with a bang as John Collins went to work on the rim per his usual self:
The good play didn’t stop there for Atlanta as Trae Young also began to get his night rolling by hitting a finger roll layup before assisting on three straight buckets. Collins was really active and continued to take out his aggression on the poor baskets in Oklahoma City:
Viewer discretion is advised. pic.twitter.com/X1KJSLDhyW— Atlanta Hawks (@ATLHawks) December 1, 2018
For as good as the Hawks looked at times in the third, they were only able to outscore the Thunder by five in the quarter and still took a 15-point deficit into the fourth down 91-76.
The Thunder got out to a quick start in the final period but John Collins was still giving his best effort:
DeAndre’ Bembry really got a chance to show off late and was impressive while guarding Russell Westbrook. Bembry has now strung together a solid last few games as the forward enters into his contract year.
Oklahoma City would go on to run away with the win on a night where the Hawks were basically done in by their abysmal second quarter effort. John Collins and Alex Len had good nights with 19 points apiece to go along with 11 rebounds for Collins and 4 rebounds for Len. Taurean Prince didn’t shoot particularly well but still posted 15 points. Trae Young was up to his usual business of a near double-double with 9 points and 8 assists but also did not shoot well, converting only 4 of 15 attempts.
The Hawks will be back in action on Monday against the vaunted Golden State Warriors at State Farm Arena. Stay tuned.