Postgame Thoughts: Hawks’ Season Ends In Six-Game Series
A few thoughts after tonight’s 81-73 loss to the Pacers:
– First of all, congratulations to the Indiana Pacers on a hard-fought and well-deserved series win. We knew this would be a tough series, and the Pacers certainly made it that. They were the better team, and they deserve to be moving on.
– This game, particularly the first half, was a display of offensive futility. The Hawks were getting plenty of offensive looks but couldn’t get anything to fall, topped off by a 6.7 percent shooting second quarter. Amazingly, the Hawks were only down eight at halftime because Indiana was almost equally as bad. The second half was a bit better, with the teams tying 44-44.
– A lot of people were writing off the Hawks when they got down 19 late in the third quarter. But as they’ve done all season, Atlanta battled back and made it a game, closing to within three late in the fourth. If a few more shots fall at any point, we’re probably looking at a game seven.
– Fittingly, the Hawks end the season with five players in double figures but no one scoring 20 points. That’s how it went during the regular season, and the balanced scoring continued tonight. Granted, no one was not, so that makes scoring 20+ difficult, but the Hawks grinded as a team to keep it close.
– Larry Drew again went with the big lineup, shifting Johan Petro into the starting lineup. When that wasn’t working, he tried going with Ivan Johnson in that role. In the fourth, he went small, shifting Kyle Korver to small forward. That small lineup did produce some offense, but it just wasn’t enough.
– One last note – Thank you to all of the fans that supported the Hawks this year. Philips Arena was as loud as it had been all season tonight, and the support was tremendous. We hope that continues and can’t say enough about how loyal our fans have been.
In a season plagued by injuries, with a new General Manager and a roster full of new players, I’d say the Hawks achieved more than most people thought they would. They made the playoffs, got the six seed and pushed the three seed further than expected. This should be a busy offseason for Atlanta. I’m excited to see what happens.
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