Atlanta head coach Lloyd Pierce did an outstanding job of distributing his player’s minutes in last night’s wire-to-wire pimpslap win at Brooklyn by a 114-96 count. Only three players logged more than 30 minutes of playing time — Trae Young (32:27), Cam Reddish (31:27) and De’Andre Hunter (31:11).
Speaking of Hunter, he hit 9-of-10 field-goal attempts, 3-of-4 from 3-point range and both of his free-throw attempts in a 23-point effort. The Hawks, who improved to 4-1 with the statement victory over Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving and Co., are leading the NBA in scoring with their 125.8 points-per-game average.
GM Travis Schlenk has upgraded the roster with shooters like the new additions of Danilo Gallinari and Bogdan Bogdanovic, who has drained 42.1 percent of his launches from downtown. Gallinari is ‘out’ tonight along with Rajon Rondo, but those new players around Young, Collins, Hunter and Kevin Huerter have the Hawks looking like they have the potential of being a top-five team in the East.
They took a double-digit lead early in the second quarter last night, and the Nets never got closer than six the rest of the way. Three of Atlanta’s four wins have come by double-digit margins and all four have come by at least eight points.
Let’s go with Atlanta -5.5 vs. the Cavs, who have lost back-to-back games both straight up and against the spread vs. the Knicks (95-86) and at Indiana (119-99).