Postgame thoughts: Smith and Horford Dominate Magic
A few thoughts after tonight’s 108-76 win over the Magic:
– You can’t talk about this game without first mentioning how awesome both Josh Smith and Al Horford were. The Hawks’ starting big men combined for 56 points on 24-36 shooting (66%), grabbed 22 rebounds between them and together dished out 10 assists. If there’s a definition of Co-Players of the Game, those two defined it tonight.
– Smith has now hit 12 of his last 18 three-pointers going back six games. If anyone in this weekend’s three-point shootout on All-Star Saturday night can’t go, maybe David Stern should give J-Smoove a call.
– Speaking of threes, we had to sweat more than usual tonight, but Kyle Korver finally did extend the streak of consecutive games with a three-pointer to 45, though he only left six minutes to spare. It was really cool (at least for me) to see the Hawks almost entirely abandon their offense to try to keep his streak alive in the fourth quarter.
– The team leader in three-pointers made tonight wasn’t Smoove or Korver, but rookie John Jenkins. His three long ones accounted for all nine of his points. He now has eight triples over his past four games.
– Anthony Tolliver started for the fourth straight game. He only had seven points, but the team is 3-1 in those four games with him in the lineup.
– Anthony Morrow hasn’t seen much playing time since returning from injury but played a significant portion of the fourth quarter with the game in the bag. His three-pointer late marked his first points since Dec. 26 against the Pistons.
– You would think with 108 points that the Hawks would have shot better than 45 percent, but that was the final tally. So how did they do it? They got 92 shots up thanks to 17 offensive rebounds and only nine turnovers. You don’t have to shoot a great percentage if you can find a way to take 92 shots in a game. The offense was efficient tonight.
This was exactly what the Hawks needed going into the All-Star break. After struggling for much of 2013 away from home, Atlanta picked up two big road wins this week. Josh Smith looks like a man out to prove he should be in Sunday’s game, and the rest of the team has stepped up to support him. If you thought the Hawks would be seven games over .500 at the break, good for you, but I don’t believe you. The team gets some much-needed and well-deserved rest with six days off before the Heat come to Philips Arena to kick off the second half of the season on Wednesday.