Posted: 10:38 pm Tuesday, April 22nd, 2014

The Hawks pushed; the Pacers pushed back 

By Mark Bradley

OK, so Game 2 was slightly less enjoyable. (Darron Cummings/AP)

OK, so Game 2 was slightly less enjoyable. (Darron Cummings/AP)

INDIANAPOLIS

Three observations in the wake of the Atlanta Hawks’ 101-85 loss to the Indiana Pacers in Game 2 of Round 1 here Tuesday.

1. The final score doesn’t reflect it, but the Hawks again had the No. 1 seed going. They led by five points after a quarter and by 11 with eight minutes left in the half. Even after Indiana sub Luis Scola scored 13 points in 11 minutes to keep his listing team close, the Hawks still led 52-48 at the break. But then this game, like Game 1, was decided in the third quarter. The Pacers’ George Hill, who’d scored no points and made no assists in the first half, started driving to the basket. He scored 10 points in the quarter, and midway through the period Indiana inserted backup point guard C.J. Watson to play alongside Hill. The combination wore the Hawks to a frazzle. They were outscored 31-13 in the period.

2. The Hawks looked great as long as their 3-pointers were falling. They made eight of 16 first-half treys, and Kyle Korver made another to open the third quarter. Then the missing commenced. “We had a lot of open looks we normally make,” Jeff Teague said, but there’s a reason nobody shoots 50 percent — or even 40 percent — on 25-footers. They’re not easy to make. The Hawks’ next 11 treys clanked, and that was essentially that. Said Pacers forward Paul George: “We just stayed the course. We understood that those shots are going to be a little harder in the second half.”

3. For whatever reason, the Teague onslaught finally abated. The Hawks’ point guard had scored 25 points in the regular-season victory here April 6 and 28 in Game 1. He had 12 points and four assists in the first half of Game 2, and he made his first shot of the third quarter — a driving hoop inside the first two minutes. He wouldn’t score again. The Pacers believed that Hill’s surges served to tire Teague. Said George: “Make or miss, we want (Hill) to shoot and to drive. That tires Teague out.” Asked if he had in fact gotten weary, Teague’s answer was the essence of brevity. “No,” he said.

From myajc.com, our premium site: Under pressure, the Pacers blow out the Hawks.

12 comments
Wilbo
Wilbo

Wow! I don't believe this. I really don't. The Hawks are now going to be forced to choke Braves style to lose this series...

TreeRollins
TreeRollins

I'm proud of these mutts and mongrels - even if they only win 1 more game. They are totally outmanned by the Pacers! And will be next year also even with Horford back.

Give the Hawks credit for out hustling these arrogant Pacers.

CowbellHell
CowbellHell

Love all the hater trolls on here, what did you not get enough in on the braves blog?  We shot horribly and STILL could have won this game.  We did what good teams do, take one on the road to take back home court.  I for one look forward to seeing them come home and continue the domination of the sorry pacers.


GO HAWKS

Peachs
Peachs

The second half of the first game in the third quarter Atlanta started slowing into a half court grind and were lucky to hit those long shots. In the first half of both games they got to the basket more and seemed to control the boards a little better though I have not looked at the stats.

JChikara
JChikara

Simply put, when the shots in the 3rd quarter didn't fall, the Hawks were toast. I think the Hawks should look back and see what screens they can run in order to get open to hit their shots. Indiana did have a good 3rd quarter, but that was about it. The series will be very interesting at Phillips on Thursday and Saturday.

coj
coj

Like I said yesterday, the Pacers would kick up their game while the Hawks don't have anywhere up to go, only down. A team that plays under .500 ball should not be in the play-offs.

Wilbo
Wilbo

Another Atlanta professional sports team showing it ain't got what it takes in the postseason. Yes, it was good they got a split on the road, but I'm guessing that home court advantage will be swept away quickly and thoroughly in Game 3. The Hawks had a spurt. It was fun for a night, but my guess is the party's over. It would kinda tickle me to see this turn into a 5 game series...

HarveyPooka
HarveyPooka

Well, there ya go.  They must have heard point blank from Bird that their jobs were on the line.

PeachtreeBart
PeachtreeBart

Something woke up the Pacers.  If we had Horford, we'd have a chance.  We don't have a chance.

iamlistening
iamlistening

Everyone knew the Hawks weren't going to sweep the Pacers. The Pacers are too good of a team. However, the Hawks did what it needed, it took a game in Indy. Now it's important to put that game in perspective and defend home court. Also, Williams cannot shoot the ball as much as Teague and Millsap, and if he does, he can't shoot 33% from the field. 

seminoleking
seminoleking

i havent seen the hawks shoot that bad in a long time.......

seminoleking
seminoleking

welp, that was fun while it lasted.............