I feel for ya, Atlanta. It wasn’t the best few days in Sports for you. Last night the Atlanta Falcons lost in the Superbowl to the New England Patriots. Tonight the Atlanta Hawks lost to the Utah Jazz. The Jazz’ 120-95 blowout victory looked like it wouldn’t happen. Yes, Utah jumped out to a 17 point lead, but Atlanta made a game of it with great end of quarter finish abilities in both of the first two quarters. But really they couldn’t stop Gordon Hayward (30 points, 7 rebounds, 5 assists, 2 steals, 2 threes). And when Gordon was taking a breather (only 30 minutes) Atlanta had their hands full with George Hill (22 points, 8 assists, 4 rebounds, 3 threes, 1 steal, 1 block) and Atlanta native Derrick Favors (20 points, 10 rebounds, 10/12 shooting, 3 steals, 2 blocks, 1 assist).
Sadly, the Hawks spent much of their energy fighting back from the 17 point lead to make it just a four point game at halftime. But the Jazz continued to dominate winning the third 37-23, and coasted to a 29-22 finish in the fourth. The Jazz shot 61.3% from the field and 38.5% from three. (And crazily, only 66.7% from the free throw line.) The Hawks defense — one that’s built upon making the opponents take bad shots — could not handle Utah’s passing and unselfishness.
The Jazz finished tonight with 31 assists, which as Spencer Campbell points out, is a new season high. Everyone contributed I didn’t even have to mention Rudy Gobert at all in this game recap until the third paragraph. Crazy.
It was a crazy revenge game tonight of Quin Snyder (former Hawks assistant), Boris Diaw (former Hawks rookie), Joe Johnson (former Hawks player), Shelvin Mack (Former Hawks player), and Raul Neto (former Hawks draft pick) beating out Paul Millsap (former Jazz rookie) and Kris Humphries (former Jazz rookie).
This doesn’t make up for the missed windmill attempt in the first half, G-Time! (Though Dominique Wilkins did point out on the Hawks feed that Hayward has definitely earned the right to be named an All-Star.)