Paul Millsap is back – and in the starting lineup.
After the Hawks’ power forward missed eight games with synovitis in his left knee, he returned last week. Millsap came off the bench in two games and rested another before he started in Sunday’s 126-125 victory over the Cavaliers.
The Hawks trailed by 26 points entering the fourth quarter. Millsap gathered a loose ball in the final seconds of regulation and made a fade-away baseline jumper at the buzzer to force overtime.
Millsap finished with 22 points and nine rebounds in 36:25. He scored nine points in the fourth quarter and five points in overtime.
Millsap was asked following the dramatic victory whether he had to fight to get his way back in the starting lineup. The Hawks have two games remaining in the regular season before the playoffs begin this weekend.
“We talked about it,” Millsap said. “I have to start at some point. It’s good to get that starter rhythm back. There are different ways you have to play when you start or come off the bench. We wanted to get in the rhythm and continue it going forward.”