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Preview: Hawks and Spurs collide in Atlanta

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The first of two battles down the stretch.

NBA: San Antonio Spurs at Atlanta Hawks Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

Update: John Collins was upgraded to probable. Dewayne Dedmon remains doubtful.

The Atlanta Hawks fell just short of an upset victory on Monday evening, dropping a one-point decision at the hands of the Miami Heat. After an off day for travel, Lloyd Pierce’s team will return to action on Wednesday at State Farm Arena and the San Antonio Spurs will await in the first match-up between the two teams this season.

The visitors enter on a three-game winning streak, sweeping through a homestand before leaving for Atlanta. It’s been an up and down season for Gregg Popovich’s bunch but, at the very least, San Antonio is operating at a playoff level in an overall sense and they will present quite a challenge for the young Hawks, even at home.

On the injury front, all eyes will be on John Collins throughout the day, as the talented big man is listed as questionable with flu-like symptoms. The 21-year-old has missed three consecutive games with the ailment but, even after traveling to Miami to meet the team, there is some doubt about Collins’ availability.

Elsewhere, the Hawks will likely take the floor without Dewayne Dedmon, who is listed as doubtful with a right knee contusion. If the veteran center is unable to go, he will join Omari Spellman (high ankle sprain) on the shelf and Atlanta will be (very) short-handed in the frontcourt, particularly if Collins is unable to go. On the brighter side, Taurean Prince is scheduled to return to action after a two-game absence and Pierce turned to Alex Poythress for extended minutes in the team’s last game.

At the time of this post, there is some uncertainty in the Las Vegas point spread for this game, largely due to the question marks surrounding Collins. Still, the Hawks will enter this game as underdogs regardless of whether their best big man is available or not and it will be interesting to see how Atlanta fares as a result.

Stay tuned throughout the day for all the latest.

Game Info

Game Date/Time: Wednesday, March 6, 7:30 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)