|Dwight smiles as he dominates the Sixers (NBA.com).|
It wasn’t easy but the Hawks got a much needed victory over the lowly Sixers
A day after finally snapping a dreadful seven game losing streak, the Hawks earned another victory. This time a 99-92 win over the Philadelphia 76ers. The game got off to a good start as Ersan and Dwight established themselves early in the 1st quarter. Despite the sloppiness, the Hawks managed to lead 25-18 after one. Several times, it appeared that the Hawks were going to break the game open for good but silly turnovers, many by Dennis Schroder kept holding them back. The Sixers would ebb and flow during the 2nd quarter approaching to within four points at one point but would find themselves down 52-43 at the half. Dwight once again, had a double double by halftime. The second half was much like the first. The Hawks would get up about 10 points, just to see Philly battle back. Unlike last night, the Sixers were never able to get over the hump and take the lead. THJ, Dwight and Dennis each made big plays late to seal the victory.
Dwight had himself a vintage game pouring in 22 points, 20 rebounds, 4 assists and a block all while committing only two fouls and shooting 6-7 from the free throw line. Bazemore added 19 in his return from injury. THJ also had 19 while Dennis and Ersan chipped in 14. Prince contributed 9 and Humphries 2 points to round out the scoring column. Overall the Hawks shot 34-80 from the field and 9-18 from three. 17 turnovers, 9 from Dennis alone, were committed tonight which is a number that must come down, but that was the only glaring negative on the night. Richaun Holmes led the way for Philadelphia with 25 points.
|Dwight corals one of his 20 rebounds (NBA.com).|
Up next for the Hawks is another tough game with huge playoff implications in Chicago. If all goes right, a playoff spot could be clinched Saturday. The Bulls currently sit at 35-39 and in 9th place in the Eastern Conference. A Hawks win would for all intents and purposes eliminate them from the playoff race. After Saturday, Atlanta travels to Brooklyn on Sunday where Paul Millsap could possibly make his return. The final week includes a home game versus Boston, a home and home with Cleveland and then a back to back featuring games with Charlotte and Indiana.
As we bear down on these final seven games heres a current look at the race for the last 4 playoff spots in the East.
5. Atlanta: 39-36 *
6. Milwaukee: 39-36
7. Miami: 37-38 *
8. Indiana: 37-38
9. Chicago: 35-39
10. Detroit: 34-41
11. Charlotte: 34-41
* Denotes tiebreaker
Hawks hold tiebreakers over Milwaukee, Indiana and Chicago.