Hawks Close First Half With Loss In Toronto

Wednesday, February 12, 2014
By Robby Kalland

Atlanta Hawks v Toronto Raptors

The Hawks (25-26) dropped their fifth game in a row heading into the All-Star break as the Raptors (28-24) were too much in the second half, rolling to a 104-83 victory.  DeMar DeRozan  led all scorers with 31 points and, after a 1-of-6 start, finished on a 10-for-13 shooting run. Without DeMarre Carroll (hamstring), the Hawks struggled to match-up with DeRozan on the wing and even when they were able to contest his shots he made a number of difficult attempts. Along with DeRozan, Kyle Lowry had a good night with 16 points and a game-high 13 assists.

Hawks vs. Raptors
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Like last night in Chicago, rebounding was a big issue for the Hawks as they gave up 15 offensive rebounds that led to 14 points. Jonas Valanciunas struggled to score the ball, but gathered in 14 rebounds — five offensive — to give the Raptors extra shot opportunities. Thanks to their offensive rebounding and 16 Atlanta turnovers — leading to 20 points — the Raptors took 16 more shot attempts than did the Hawks.

The Hawks, normally a very good three-point shooting team, were never able to find their rhythm from beyond the arc, going 4-of-20 (20%) from three and only Kyle Korver had multiple makes for the Hawks, going 2-for-4 and extending his three-point streak to 120 games.  Toronto was 11-for-33 from three-point range as the three ball was key to them pulling away in the third quarter.

The Hawks started the game strong, leading by as many as eight in the first quarter, and trailed by only one at the half. Gustavo Ayon led the Hawks with 12 points and four rebounds in the first half, going 6-for-6 from the field and he finished the game with 18 points and 10 boards. In the second half, the Hawks offense went cold at the same time the Raptors offense got rolling as Toronto outscored Atlanta 33-21 in the third quarter to open up a 13-point lead.

Paul Millsap finished with 17 points and six rebounds, but the Raptors did well to force the Hawks to find other scoring options as Millsap was only able to get eight field goal attempts.

Jeff Teague had 13 points and six assists, but shot just 4-of-13 (30.8%) and missed a number of looks near the rim that he normally makes. Teague did well early to attack the Raptors defense, but he didn’t have the touch on his floater to take advantage when he got a good look.

The Hawks will now take nearly a week off for the All-Star break to regroup and try to get healthy before they return to action next Tuesday in Indiana.

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Photo by Ron Torenne/NBAE/Getty Images

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