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Hawks fade down stretch to Heat, lose 122-113

Atlanta Hawks v Miami Heat Photo by Issac Baldizon/NBAE via Getty Images

The Hawks and the Heat met in a matchup where both sides were missing starters. For the Hawks, Jalen Johnson remained out and De’Andre Hunter joined him on the bench due to right knee soreness. For the Heat, Jimmy Butler was unavailable.

The Hawks faced an immediate 9-point deficit seemingly less than a heartbeat after the opening tip. Miami’s aggressive defense gave the Hawks early problems as it usual does in recent years. Still, the Hawks began to slowly claw back into the contest.

Dejounte Murray was a major catalyst for the early turnaround, as he went on a personal 10-0 run.

After being down by as many as 12 points, the Hawks showed fight and made it a 33-26 contest after one quarter.

In the second quarter, the Heat and Hawks traded blows. Tyler Herro and Bam Adebayo led the charge for Miami while Atlanta countered with their Serbian sharpshooter.

‘Bogi’ refused to cool down, hitting six of his first eight three-point attempts.

A Saddiq Bey offensive rebound and follow as time expired brought the score to 62-60 Miami at the break. Bogdan Bogdanovic led all scorers at halftime with 20 points off the bench.

Atlanta came out hot in the third quarter, scoring the first 13 points and taking a 73-62 lead. But Miami responded with a 7-0 run of their own to drive towards a 73-73 horserace contest. From there, the teams were engaged in a back-and-forth struggle that featured a lot of free throws taken.

On this play, Onyeka Okongwu finds Bogdanovic on nice cut for an easy basket.

Late in the period, ‘Bogi’ repayed the favor.

After three quarters, the Hawks were down just two points at 88-86. But early in the fourth quarter, Atlanta dug themselves a hole as Miami looked to have an edge in energy. The Hawks had trouble putting together any offense down the stretch and faded badly.

At 107-98 with just over four minutes left to play, Trae Young kicked into gear with five quick points to give the Hawks breathing room. But Miami responded with a 7-point run of their own to put Atlanta’s hopes of winning on life support.

Atlanta wouldn’t quite make Miami sweat down the stretch despite some late triples for Trae Young. They took a loss 122-113 and fell to 12-16 on the season. Young finished with 30 points and 13 assists, his sixth consecutive 30-point or more and 10-assist or more game to cement his name in NBA history.

The Hawks return home to take on the Memphis Grizzlies tomorrow evening.