The Atlanta Hawks put together a few encouraging moments on Wednesday evening before ultimately falling short against the Milwaukee Bucks. Among them was the play of De’Andre Hunter and Cam Reddish, both of whom excelled on the way to career-best nights, and Lloyd Pierce’s team will look to keep that upward trajectory moving on Friday against the Detroit Pistons.
In the season opener, the Hawks knocked off the Pistons at Little Caesars Arena behind an explosion from Trae Young. Since then, both teams have struggled, with Atlanta losing two key pieces to injury/suspension and Detroit failing to find its stride in the early going of the 2019-20 campaign. Still, that victory provides optimism for the Hawks in this spot, even with its reduced roster.
On the injury front, Kevin Huerter (rotator cuff) remains sidelined but the Hawks have a trio of interesting issues to monitor before tip-off. Reddish is perhaps the most interesting, as the rookie swingman is listed as questionable with a left wrist sprain. He is joined on the injury report by Evan Turner (left Achilles pain) and Chandler Parsons (left knee soreness), with both veterans listed as probable.
Reddish has been starting since Huerter’s injury and, if he is unable to play, Pierce will likely turn to the likes of Allen Crabbe and DeAndre’ Bembry for increased deployment. Still, it would obviously be better for Atlanta if the staff had the full complement of wing options available, even in a match-up against a team that isn’t wing-dominant by any stretch.
The Hawks are currently six-point road underdogs in this game. On one hand, that number might feel high against a team with an identical 4-10 record, especially with Detroit losing five straight games in their own right. On the other, the Pistons are dealing with fewer high-profile absences, with only Reggie Jackson and Tony Snell sidelined among the team’s entrenched rotation.
There are many story lines to monitor, ranging from Blake Griffin’s quest to find his footing to how the Hawks will deal with Andre Drummond on the interior. Beyond that, the Hawks will be aiming to stop a losing skid and, quite frankly, Atlanta must figure out its first-quarter woes in order to maintain a puncher’s chance of a (mild) upset.
Stay tuned throughout the day and be encouraged to utilize the comments below as a “game thread” for the action.
Game Date/Time: Friday, Nov. 22, 7:00 pm ET
Location: Little Caesars Arena
TV: Fox Sports Southeast, NBA League Pass
Radio: 92.9 The Game (Atlanta); Hawks Radio Network
Streaming: Fox Sports Go, NBA League Pass