(Atlanta, GA) – The Atlanta Hawks got off to a pretty good start that saw Ice Trae break some records along the way in Detroit for the season opener. The youngster scored the most points in a Hawks’ season opener since Dominique Wilkins in 1986. The magic number 38…Trae-mazing to say the least.
But could the Hawks take that 1-0 record and boost it to 2-0. Fans were certainly ready for it as State Farm Arena was pretty much full.
Opening night, Trae Young had 25 points in the first half and it looked as if he was on his way to another stellar night racking up a quick 13 points in just 13 minutes of play, with 4 rebounds and 5 assists.
Offense looked smooth minus some senseless turnovers that Atlanta was surely hoping wouldn’t come back to haunt them. Good ball movement helped them find some easy buckets down low and one thing about this young Hawks’ team, once they get rolling their chemistry is tough to break-through. Quick baskets by De’Andre Hunter, Kevin Heurter, Jabari Parker and Cam Reddish helped push Atlanta up 46-42 with 3 minutes left in the 1st half.
Trae Young would return with 2:30 left in the first half and you have to keep your eyes on him or you might miss something. He ended the first half with 17 points playing just 18 minutes, the only Hawk in double digits after 2 quarters.
For Orlando, Nikola Vucevic, Evan Fournier and Markelle Fultz would all end the first half with 10 points each. But it wouldn’t be enough to grab the lead as the Magic went into halftime 2 down – 52-50.
Trae Young added 7 quick points as the 2nd half got underway, but a series of fouls kept giving Orlando opportunities to inch closer. Alex Len had 3 but made up for it hitting a seismic 3 from the left corner that helped the Hawks stretch it out a little bit more; but Orlando quietly moved within 4, 64-60 with 6:30 to play in the 3rd quarter.
If the Hawks were getting comfortable, Jabari Parker made sure to spark things up taking up some real estate down low and dunking on quite a few folks but a bad touch foul matched with some good acting skills by Aaron Gordon made it a 2-point game real quick. 70-68. Atlanta managed to end the 3rd quarter up 77-75, so all is fair in love and basketball.
In the 4th quarter, Batman and Robin got started as Trae lobbed one up to John Collins who jammed it in. But for every point the Hawks scored, the refs found a foul to give to Orlando and before you knew it, the Magic had the lead 80-79.
At this point, the Hawks had 20 personal fouls and 14 turnovers and that cloud was starting to form. When the home team only hits the line for 9 free throws and the visiting team has 24 + , that could certainly steal your joy and the game. 6:42 left to play and the Magic had a 5 point lead. 90-85.
Coach Pierce brought in his young boys, Young, Collins, Bembry and Parker with vet Vince Carter to regroup. Carter’s first basket would pull Atlanta within 3, 90-87 and after an offensive charge by Orlando, there was a chance to make a move. Trae Young pulls up from the belt-line draining a 3 and tying it all up 90-90.
Carter’s leadership would prove to be pivotal. And the fact that Trae Young doesn’t see anyone on the court is that kind of fierceness that will get you through the storm. With just a couple of minutes left, Atlanta forced a big turnover that would see Trae Young lob a high three that hit the glass and found its way in.
Post game, Vince said he was watching it come down and thought if it hits the back of the rim it’ll bounce back out to him. But luck was on their side this time, after being on the other side of Victory several other times, and the Hawks will take it how it comes.
As for Trae, who finished the game with 39, he’s never been afraid of the big moments and said he wanted to get off to a more powerful start in his second season in the NBA. Looks like he’s doing just that. And Coach Pierce wasn’t to upset about the fouls. He said anytime you can get 60 in the paint, you can live with it. Final Score 103-99.
Up next, the Hawks will host the 76ers on Monday while the Magic will visit the Raptors.
(Atlanta, GA) – It looks like a few days off was all the Hawks needed to get their chemistry back together and their energy back up. Coach Lloyd Pierce said he might have to give them a few more days off if that’s what it takes to get them to play the way they did against the Lakers.
Granted LeBron James and his purple and gold squad are still trying to marry a mix of players that will put them in good standing for a playoff run but as of right now it doesn’t look like anyone is interested in advancing post regular season.
A Lonzo Ball-less Lakers couldn’t find their way out of trouble against the Hawks, even with Lebron dishing up his usual triple double with 28 pts 16 ast and 11 rbs. The defense collapsed early allowing the Hawks to go 10-17 from the arc in the 1st quarter alone and L.A. gave up 100 pts in just 3 qtrs.
For the Hawks, they had 6 players in double digits including veteran Vince Carter who was also responsible for a couple of those 3s in the 1st quarter. Led by Trae Young, who had 22 pts and 14 asts, the Hawks were able to break-down the Lakers’ defense early and unlike past outings was able to hold onto a 5pt lead going into the 4th quarter which saw both teams struggle.
For the Lakers, the loss was their fourth out five forcing them under .500 at 28-29. The Hawks are 19-38. They’ll host the Knicks tomorrow night while the Lakers are off until after the All-Star break.
(Atlanta, GA) -The Hawks broke down the Lakers’ defense tonight at State Farm Arena. Post Game with Vince Carter, he talks about those 10 3s in the 1st quarter, the high points and the future….that is….Trae Young a.k.a Ice Trae.
(Sacramento, CA) – Warriors guard Patrick McCaw was taken away on a stretcher after he fell hard to the floor following a foul by Sacramento’s Vince Carter during a 112-96 Golden State win Saturday night. McCaw was taken to UC Davis Medical Center, the team said. It announced late Saturday that a chest X-ray and CT scan came back clear and that McCaw would undergo an MRI.’‘I just hope he’s OK,” a visibly distraught Carter said after McCaw fell. ”I play this game because I love it and enjoy it, not to see young guys get hurt. He has a bright future. You can tell me whatever, it was an accident. … I don’t like to see him sitting there in pain saying he can’t feel his lower half.”
McCaw drove the baseline and went down with a thud at the 41.8-second mark of the third quarter, hit in the lower body by Carter. McCaw lay in agony for about 10 minutes as the arena silenced. Carter, who was given a flagrant-one foul, knelt nearby as medical personnel from both teams along with Warriors coach Steve Kerr rushed out to the baseline beneath Golden State’s basket.”Vince is not that type of guy, he’s never been that type of guy,” Golden State’s Draymond Green said. ”Freak accidents,things happen. A guy jumps and he didn’t touch him much if you’re as high as you can jump you lose your balance easier. I know that was tough on Vince.”
Players for both teams eventually came to the floor as McCaw was placed on a stretcher and wheeled away with his neck stabilized. McCaw, who appeared to be trying to dunk, did a scissor kick in the air over Carter’s right shoulder before landing hard on his troublesome back.Kerr swore and was visibly frustrated and hollered ‘‘He knows better,” referring to Carter, before going out to the court to check on his second-year guard.
Carter got close to McCaw and offered some words just before the stretcher was pulled away. The two teams then gathered in a huddle before the game resumed after about a 10-minute delay.”I remember his foot hitting the side of my leg, that’s it,”Carter said. ”I’m not going to sit here and complain about a flagrant when a man can’t feel his legs.”Carter said he approached members of the Warriors after the game and apologized. He appreciated the kind words from the Warriors but couldn’t get his mind off seeing McCaw on the floor.’‘It’s all well and good but still a young man is trying to get his feeling back and that’s my concern,” Carter said. ”Regardless of how it happened, accident, all of the things that they were telling me, you still want to see him OK.”
(Sacramento, CA) – The Sacramento Kings are remembering an unarmed black man shot to death by police. The Kings wore black warm-up t-shirts with Stephon Clark’s name on the back before last night’s game against the Boston Celtics.
The front of the shirts was inscribed with “Accountability. We Are One.” A PSA video against gun violence the teams made played during the first quarter of the game. Last night’s expressions came three nights after a huge protest blocked the Golden 1 Center arena where the Kings play their home games.
The shirts were the idea of Kings guard Garrett Temple.Clark was in his grandmother’s backyard the night of March 18th when Sacramento Police officers shot him 20 times. Police were looking for a man reported to be breaking car windows. The officers who shot the 22-year-old Clark said he pointed a gun at them. It turned out he had a cell phone in his hand.
After beating New Orleans in a long one that stretched into OT, Memphis couldn’t repeat against the Hawks at Philips Arena. The Grizzlies have a long injury list which left them shorthanded.
Those Tennessee boys are without Centers Chris Andersen and Marc Gasol , Forwards Zach Randolph and Brandan Wright and Guard Vince Carter, whom I spoke with Post Game about fatigue, defense, Lance Stephenson and regrouping.
Videographer: Chris Calon