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Hawks defeat Phoenix Suns for third straight win, 129-120

NBA: Phoenix Suns at Atlanta Hawks Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

The Atlanta Hawks faced the Phoenix Suns at home on Friday night. De’Andre Hunter was unavailable. but expected to play in tomorrow’s contest versus the Warriors.

Dejounte Murray scored the first basket of the game off a short fadeaway on a drive to the paint. The Hawks gave up a few early baskets in the paint to Jusuf Nurkic, and trailed 15-12 before Snyder called his first timeout.

Trae Young scored eight points before exiting the game for the first time, thanks to a pair of three-pointers and a steal and score. Young scored 11 in the first quarter as the Hawks led 33-30.

Bogdanovic hit a pair of threes in the second quarter, and Okongwu scored his own pair of field goals in the paint. The Suns outscored the Hawks 15-12 in the first five minutes of the quarter, as Kevin Durant amassed 13 points. Right after the timeout, Okongwu and Young nailed back to back three-pointers.

Bogdanovic scored 12 points in the second quarter after going scoreless through one. The Hawks maintained a one-to-two possession lead throughout the majority of the quarter. The second quarter was played even at 33 points for each team, as the Hawks entered halftime with a 66-63 lead. Durant, Nurkic, and Booker were all in double figures for the Suns.

Trae Young hit two three-pointers to start the second half. Meanwhile, Saddiq Bey was officially ruled out with an ankle sprain he suffered late in the second quarter. Wes Matthews would fill his minutes.

After some even play, the Suns would take the lead with a few minutes remaining in the third quarter. They had hit five three-pointers of twelve attempts. Dejounte Murray, after shooting 2-of-5 in the first quarter, didn’t attempt another shot until a few minutes remaining in the third. He sunk a free throw, which would be his first points since the first quarter. A three from Matthews was followed by more free throws from Murray. The Hawks secured a 100-95 advantage entering the fourth quarter.

Young started the fourth with a midrange, then assisted Johnson on a jumper in the paint. Murray then scored on back to back layups, extending the lead 108-99 and forcing a timeout from Phoenix. Later, a three from Bogdanovic extended the lead to 10.

Young continued to perform, including a huge steal into a three-pointer to give the team some momentum.

The Hawks continued to hit the shots they needed, and avoided any real push from the Suns. Murray was big down the stretch, and the Hawks were able to escape with a nine point victory.