Hawks Limp Away From Summer League With Loss

Saturday, July 20, 2013
By Jaryd Wilson

A few thoughts after tonight’s 93-87 loss to the Kings:

– The Hawks have certainly seen better days.  Lucas Nogueira and Mike Muscala were out before halftime with precautionary injuries, and the team allowed 90+ for the third time this week.  It certainly wasn’t the way Atlanta wanted to end its 11-day stay in Las Vegas, but it wasn’t all bad…

– …Mike Scott continued to improve, tonight notching the team’s first and only double-double of the summer with 25 points and 10 rebounds.  Scott has improved throughout the week on the offensive end, and it’s clear he’s confident in his ability to not only shoot the mid-range jumper, but also put the ball on the floor and attack the basket.

John Jenkins didn’t shoot the ball great, but it was an improvement over last game.  All week I thought he found open shots and had quality looks.  Tonight he cashed in for 19 points.

– Dennis Schröder shot the ball well, going 5-11 to score 15 points.  The rookie still has some things to work on (more on that in a blog post later this week), but it appears Danny Ferry’s decision to sign him was a good thing after his play this week.

– Another nice night for Shelvin Mack, who had 12 points in 14 minutes off the bench.  He quietly put together a good summer as well.

Quin Snyder was forced to extend the bench after Muscala and Nogueira exited with minor injuries in the first half.  Eric Dawson played the bulk of the minutes left by the rookies, and he went 3-3 from the floor to chip in six points.

– Before Nogueira’s injury, the first-round pick blocked five shots.  The Summer League record is seven, so he was well on his way to breaking it if not for being held out the final 20 minutes.

– Atlanta went 23-23 from the free throw line tonight.  That’s three consecutive outstanding free throw shooting efforts from the Hawks.  Hopefully that carries over into the season.

– The Hawks continue to be inconsistent on the defensive end.  After their finest defensive effort of the summer two nights ago against the Blazers, they may have had their worst performance on that end of the floor tonight.  The Kings ran at every opportunity and got a lot of points in transition.  Though they did hit some contested shots, a bulk of the points were inside.  Without rim protectors like Muscala and Nogueira, Atlanta struggled to get stops in the second half.  It’s the third time this week they gave up 90+ in a 40-minute game.  That’s cause for concern.

– Offensively, the team managed 87 points despite shooting just 39 percent.  It was not a good-shooting summer for the Hawks, but as I’ve said, the quality shot attempts, which were there again tonight, are more important than makes or misses this time of year.

While it may not have been exactly the summer the coaching staff wanted, it was certainly a good chance to see the young players play.  Everyone has something to be proud of and also something to work on, which is typically how Summer League goes.  One thing I know is that this group got very close after being around each other for 11 days, and five single-digit games helped give them competitive NBA experience.  We’ll see who gets invited to training camp in a few months.

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