WHO: Brooklyn Nets (34-33) at Atlanta Hawks (22-44)
WHAT: This is the biggest game of the year for the Nets...since last game, which was ALSO the biggest game of the year. Look, the Nets need to win these winnable games at this point. Anything less is unacceptable.
WHERE: State Farm Arena, Atlanta, GA
WHEN: 7:00 p.m. EST
HOW: YES, FSSE-ATL; NBA League Pass
THE STORY: Game Preview
We saw something close to a full-strength Big Three against the Cavs with D’Angelo Russellscoring 25, Spencer Dinwiddie scoring 28, and Caris LeVert with 14 points and a couple of really clutch shots at the end of the game. A combined 67 points for the Nets three best players is awesome, and against this Hawks team who are still quite young and employ a couple of below average defenders in the backcourt like Trae Young and Kevin Huerter and as a team have the third worse Defensive Rating in the league at 112.7, another large output from the backcourt would be great.
Speaking of Huerter, he is just one of a slew of Atlanta Wings, in addition to DeAndre Bembry, Kent Bazemore, Vince Carter, Taurean Prince, and Justin Anderson. A lot of guys, few standouts. Though I think Huerter might have a chance to be the next Joe Harris if he puts the work in. He’s shooting 38% from three on 4.6 attempts per game as a 20 year old rookie on a team that isn’t totally terrible. When Joe Harris was 20 he was scoring 11.3 points per game as a sophomore at Virginia. Huerter is getting a head start on his three point specialist education, is what I’m saying.
For more on the Hawks, check out: Peachtree Hoops
Technically, the Atlanta Hawks have lost three out of four games. However, Lloyd Pierce’s team lost those games by seven (to the Bulls in 4-OT), one and seven points, respectively, further illustrating that the team is playing competitive and entertaining basketball as the stretch run arrives. On Saturday evening, the Hawks will play host to another team operating in appealing fashion, as Kenny Atkinson and the Brooklyn Nets invade State Farm Arena.
Brooklyn has won two straight as they arrive and, like Atlanta, will be coming off a two-day rest period following a clash on Wednesday. Saturday’s contest marks the third (and final) match-up of the season between the two teams and, to this point, the Nets have the upper hand with a pair of double-digit victories in Brooklyn.