The Atlanta Hawks were on the road to take on the Charlotte Hornets. Standings-wise, this was a big game for both teams as the Hawks came in 0.5 ahead of the Hornets for the 9th seed. The Hornets were able to take the win, defeating the Hawks 116-106.
The Hawks came out firing from three, with a pair each from De’Andre Hunter and Kevin Huerter.
Dre is already 2-2 from this spot pic.twitter.com/xnNtbCRCAj— Atlanta Hawks (@ATLHawks) March 16, 2022
The Hawks were doing work on both sides of the ball, and turning defense into offense with Onyeka Okogwu. The score was 33-29 to end the first quarter.
Danilo Gallinari kept the Hawks afloat in the first half of the second quarter, as both teams traded shots with each other. Montrez Harrell was a problem for the Hawks and specifically Okongwu, who was also playing well while in the game before picking up his third foul in the quarter.
Capela came right in and picked up where left off, as grabbing rebounds and finishing at the rim with the vision of Trae Young. Going into halftime, he had 15 points and 11 rebounds.
Capela wasn’t the only teammate Young was feeding in the first half, and he had 10 assists to finish the half, despite only having two points. What also helped was the Hawks shot 56 percent from three, and De’Andre Hunter shot four-of-four from deep in the half.
The Hawks went into halftime with a 67-62 lead.
With Gallinari being ruled out for the rest of the game with a right biceps contusion, Timothé Luwawu-Cabarrot started the second half. The Hawks surrendered their five-point lead but were able to regain it with a few plays from Huerter and Bogdan Bogdanovic.
Young was able to score his first field in the third quarter.
Okongwu continued his strong play, with a nice pass to Lou Williams.
A little role reversal as OO hits Lou in the paint pic.twitter.com/Qk8HIIL5vb— Atlanta Hawks (@ATLHawks) March 17, 2022
The game was tied at 85 going into the fourth quarter, and the Hawks didn’t start off on a good note with the Hornets taking a six-point lead. The Hawks made a few shots to keep it close, but the Hornets were not surrendering their lead down the stretch.
Midway through the quarter, both teams were finding it hard to buy a bucket. Hunter tied the game with this nice shot.
After that shot, the Hawks went cold again but the Hornets heated up, taking a 10-point lead down the stretch thanks to PJ Washington. The Hawks were never able to get any consistent offense going in the second half, and it hurt them as the game came down to the wire.
Capela finished with 17 points and 15 rebounds, Hunter finished with 21 points, and Huerter finished with 16 points and seven rebounds.
Young left the game briefly in the second half with a quad issue, so that may be something to monitor heading into the next game.
The Hawks will be back at home on Friday to take on the Memphis Grizzlies.