The Hawks were looking good after starting out the season strong on national TV with a dominating win at home against the Dallas Mavericks. The victory was short loved as the Hawks went onto dropping their first road game of the year to Cleveland in a close contest. with a .500 record as I write this, let’s take a look at where the Hawks rank in this weeks power ranking roundup.
NBA.com — No. 8
In a Week 1 flush with Jekyll-and-Hyde performances, the Hawks were the Jekyll and Hyde Team of the Week, crushing the Mavs on Thursday and then losing to the previously 0-2 Cavs (with a rest advantage) on Saturday. Zone defense had them a little flummoxed in Cleveland as they went scoreless over the first 3:42 of the third quarter. According to Synergy tracking, the Hawks saw only two possessions of zone in the 2021 playoffs after seeing the third most (339 possessions) in the regular season and ranking 15th in zone efficiency (0.98 points per possession).
The play of Cam Reddish (39 total points on 14-for-29 shooting) through two games is certainly encouraging. He’s 6-for-9 from beyond the arc, but has also had some nifty drives to the cup in the two games. When they needed a bucket late (and with Danilo Gallinari out) on Saturday, the Hawks had Reddish, De’Andre Hunter and Bogdan Bogdanovic on the floor with Trae Young and John Collins. Cleveland switched Hunter’s screen for Young and Hunter’s pick-and-pop 3 was a brick.
On Saturday, the Hawks will be back in Philly, where they won three playoff games (by a total of 14 points) in June.
ESPN — No. 9
It may be a small sample, but Cam Reddish has picked up where he left off during Atlanta’s postseason run. In four playoff games, Reddish shot 9-of-14 from 3-point range and averaged 12.8 points per game. To start this season, the third-year player is 6-for-9 from deep in two games and is averaging 19.5 points a night.
SI.com — No. 8
Atlanta followed up a statement win against the Mavs with a loss against the frisky Cavaliers. The team’s depth has been on display in its first couple games, with five different players currently averaging at least 11 points a night. Cam Reddish and De’Andre Hunter, two players who were mostly injured during last summer’s postseason run, have looked great early.
Looks like the Hawks fell slightly across the board. The Hawks have a chance to go undefeated this week and could see themselves rising in the rankings. Until then, let’s just hope that the team see improvement along with good health as they start out this season.