When: 7:30 pm EST
Where: State Farm Arena; Atlanta, GA
How to watch: Bally Sports Southeast, NBATV
Both teams come into tonight’s contest riding winning streaks on their respective home floors. Unfortunately for the Hornets, this game is on the Hawks home floor. There, the Hawks have won three straight and six of seven on the year. They’ve won those most recent three by an average of 16.3 points per game.
They’ve sputtered a bit out of the gate after making a surprise run to the Eastern Conference Finals last season, but most of those struggles have been on the road, which isn’t super relative to tonight’s game. Trae Young is the straw that stirs the drink once again. His stats so far this season are almost the exact same as the ones he put up last season with the exception of the NBA not giving him as many cheap free throw attempts. He’s still probably one of the worst defenders in the NBA, but he makes up for it by being such a good offensive player.
The guard rotation behind him has been shored up by the offseason acquisition of Delon Wright, Wright is kind of the anti-young. He isn’t much of an offensive threat, but he’s a good defender and does the rest of the little things well.
John Collins is Young’s Robin, then there are four other Hawks averaging double figures, and that still doesn’t include Kevin Huerter and Danilo Gallinari. Really, the Hawks are just the Hornets slightly in the future. They’re a team led by a one-two punch at point and forward with a bunch of depth on the wings that’s a mix of youth and veteran experience.
The parallels appear statistically as well. Both have paired strong offense with equally as weak defense. The Hawks just play a fair amount slower. Both are in the top five in 3-point shooting percentage.
This has the makings of a high scoring affair if the Hornets let up defensively like we saw in the last quarter and a half of the Pacers game. It should be a fun match-up between two similarly constructed teams.