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Preview: Hawks play host to struggling Suns

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Another night at the office.

NBA: Atlanta Hawks at Phoenix Suns Jennifer Stewart-USA TODAY Sports

The Atlanta Hawks came up short of a victory on Friday evening, falling at the hands of the Detroit Pistons in what was an entertaining, back-and-forth contest. On the heels of the All-Star break, the team should be set up to withstand the rigors of a back-to-back but, on Saturday evening, Atlanta will be tested by the Phoenix Suns.

The Suns began their post-break run on Thursday with a loss in Cleveland and, while there was travel involved, Phoenix did not have to play on Friday. That leaves the visitors with a rest advantage and, frankly, they’ll need it. Devin Booker and company are currently in the midst of the NBA’s longest losing streak, having dropped 16 in a row, and that may conjure memories of the New York Knicks invading State Farm Arena last week.

That particular game didn’t go well for Atlanta and, as a result, it will be interesting to see how the Hawks handle things this time around. The good folks in Las Vegas install the Hawks as small betting favorites and, while that isn’t exactly a familiar situation for this squad, it isn’t a surprise to see the home team favored, even on the second night of a back-to-back.

Kevin Huerter is not expected to play for the Hawks after missing Friday’s game with an ankle sprain and, on the Phoenix side, T.J. Warren will be absent with ankle issues of his own. Still, the playing field should be relatively level and, if all goes according to plan for Lloyd Pierce’s team, they’ll be able to avoid back-to-back losses to open their second “half” of the season.

Stay tuned throughout the day for all the latest from State Farm Arena.

Game Info

Game Date/Time: Saturday, Feb. 23, 7:00 pm ET

Location: State Farm Arena

TV: Fox Sports Southeast

Radio: 92.9 The Game (Atlanta); Hawks Radio Network

Streaming: Fox Sports Go; NBA League Pass (out of market)