Atlanta Hawks Lose another Close one to the Los Angeles Lakers

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Friday night, the Atlanta Hawks (17-18) were faced against a struggling Los Angeles Lakers (14-21) team that has lost five of their last six contests including their recent loss to the Miami Heat. The Hawks were looking to bounce back after a disappointing loss to the Brooklyn Nets (108-107), Wednesday night. Coming into tonight’s game there has been some rumored turmoil for both franchises. For the Lakers, it seems that LeBron James is disgruntled with the fact that the organization as of now, is nowhere near title contention. While the Hawks had reports regarding a possible resignation from their head coach Nate McMillan. McMillan addressed the rumor in a post game interview in which he dismissed the notion. 

Although the Hawks were able to have their star point guard, Trae Young rejoin the lineup, they were still missing their other key players including Clint Capela (calf) and De’Andre Hunter (ankle). As for the Lakers, they still had Anthony Davis sidelined due to the stress injury in his foot while Max Christie was placed on G-League assignment. 

Despite the rumored turmoil that has occurred within the past 24 hours, these two teams were ready to tip-off. In the opening quarter the Hawks jumped out to a fantastic start as their offense was clicking (shooting 48% from the field and 40% from three), while defensively they were able to hold the Lakers to 39% shooting and an abysmal 13% from three. The Hawks were able to carry this performance over into the second quarter as they amounted to a 15 point lead with 5 minutes left. The Lakers had trimmed the lead, bringing it within 5 points (67-62) in favor of the Hawks thanks to LeBron’s 16 points scored in that period. With the half concluded, both Young and LeBron had led their respective teams in scoring with 17 points (Young) and 18 points (LeBron).

The second half was not reminiscent of the first as the Hawks defense had allowed the Lakers to score with such ease, shooting 68% from the field. The defensive assignment on LeBron entering the third was also not enough as he still posed a nightmare with him scoring another 13 points. By the end of the third quarter, the Lakers were able to regain the lead 98-95, making it their first since the lead was 2-0. Once again in a similar fashion to the last outing for the Hawks, they were able to get the lead (101-100) before ultimately giving it up for the night. Despite all the Hawks efforts to close out the game, LeBron just proved to be all too much as he scored 16 points which was decisive in how this game had turned out. The Hawks had now lost back to back home games putting them at 17-19 on the season with the Lakers winning 130-121. 

The All-Star backcourt tandem of Young and Dejounte Murray led the way for the Hawks with 29 points and 8 assists (Young), 20 points and 9 assists (Murray). The Hawks also had other key contributors with Onyeka Okongwu and Bogdan Bogdanović adding 17 points each, Jalen Johnson with 15 points, and A.J. Griffin with his 13 points. 

LeBron on his 38th birthday had reminded many of us that perhaps father time isn’t undefeated as he poured in 47 points, 10 rebounds, 9 assists, while shooting 67% from the entire field. With such impressive stats, LeBron finds himself as the only other player with a 45/10/5 game at 38 years old, with the other being Michael Jordan. The Lakers supporting cast also helped the King on his birthday in a collaborative effort: Thomas Bryant led the way with 19 points and 17 rebounds, Russell Westbrook with 14 points, 11 assists and 8 rebounds, Dennis Schröder 12 points, Wenyen Gabriel with 11 points, and Patrick Beverley adding his 10 points. 

Post Game Interviews

Trae Young

Onyeka Okongwu

Coach Nate McMillan

What’s Next? 

The Atlanta Hawks (17-19) will begin their pacific road trip facing off against the (19-18) Golden State Warriors. Despite the fact that the reigning champs were off to a sluggish start when Stephen Curry got injured, they have managed to pick up some steam.The Warriors have now won their last 4 games including a win against the Portland Trail Blazers, in which they were able to go on a 16-2 scoring run within the final four minutes of the game. On the season, the Warriors are averaging 116.4 points per game (5th best offense) while allowing 117 (5th worst defense). 

As for the Los Angeles Lakers (15-21), they are getting ready to finish off their road trip across the southeast division as they will have their rematch against the (10-26) Charlotte Hornets. The last meeting between these two teams, the Hornets were able to hold off the Lakers comeback as Schröder was unable to make the three to win the game. On the season, the Hornets are currently averaging 111.4 points per game (6th worst offense) while allowing 117.9 (3rd worst defense).

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For more sports coverage from MLB, NBA, NFL, to NCAA contact Julian Ojeda at 786-501-9082 or via email

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