The Atlanta Hawks took the first blow in their first round series vs. the Miami Heat, suffering their worst offensive game of the season in a blowout loss in Game 1. The Hawks will look to turn things around in Game 2 before returning to Atlanta for Games 3 and 4 this weekend.
Trae Young notoriously had his worst game of the season in Game 1, scoring just eight points and shooting 1-of-12 from the field. It would be silly to think he would repeat such a performance, but Atlanta will need to have a better plan for how to handle Miami’s aggressive defense. The Hawks will also hope to get a few more calls as the Heat were very physical with Young in Game 1, committing some borderline ridiculous acts that mostly went uncalled.
Unfortunately for Atlanta, guys like Kyle Lowry, Jimmy Butler and PJ Tucker are masters of getting away with physical play, and the postseason only amplifies what they can get away with. It feels safe to expect Young will have a better game in Game 2, and that could start at the free throw line. Atlanta needs to get control of the tempo and give their defense more chances to setup against Miami’s potent offensive attack.
The absence of Clint Capela leaves the Hawks very vulnerable defensively, so simply slowing the game down and making the Heat play vs. a set defense more often could be the type of edge they need to figure things out. Miami is sure to come with another aggressive effort in Game 2, but it will be hard for them to repeat their 18-for-38 (47%) three-point shooting performance from Game 1. With the right tweaks, Atlanta can be right in the mix for a victory in Game 2.
For the Hawks, Capela (right knee hyperextension) and Lou Williams (back) are out, while Bogdan Bogdanovic (left ankle) is probable.
Miami again lists PJ Tucker, Dewayne Dedmon, Markieff Morris and Haywood Highsmith as questionable for Sunday’s game. Gabe Vincent is again probable to suit up for the Heat.
The Hawks are a 7-point underdog on the road vs. the Heat as of early Tuesday morning. The point total is sitting at o/u 219.
Game Date & Time: Tues. Apr. 17, 7:30 pm ET
Location: FTX Arena
TV: TNT, BSSE
Streaming: TNT App, Bally Sports App
Radio: 92.9 The Game
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