You have reached your limit of free articles this month.

Enjoy unlimited access to myAJC.com

Starting at just 99¢ for 8 weeks.

GREAT REASONS TO SUBSCRIBE TODAY!

  • IN-DEPTH REPORTING
  • INTERACTIVE STORYTELLING
  • NEW TOPICS & COVERAGE
  • ePAPER
X

You have read of premium articles.

Get unlimited access to all of our breaking news, in-depth coverage and bonus content- exclusively for subscribers. Starting at just 99¢ for 8 weeks

X

Welcome to myAJC.com

This subscriber-only site gives you exclusive access to breaking news, in-depth coverage, exclusive interactives and bonus content.

You can read free articles of your choice a month that are only available on myAJC.com.

Trail Blazers drub Millsap-less Hawks


Can missing Paul Millsap possibly mean that much?

The Hawks played without their All-Star power forward and were drubbed from the start by the Trail Blazers in a 113-97 loss Saturday at Philips Arena. Millsap was a late scratch after experiencing tightness in his left knee during his pregame warm-up.

The Trail Blazers led by as many as 23 points in the torrid-shooting opening quarter. They started the game on a 23-5 run as the Hawks were clearly caught off-guard. The Hawks trailed by double digits less than four minutes into the game. The deficit reached 20 points with three minutes remaining in the period.

The Hawks (37-32) have lost three consecutive. They had a five-game win streak over the Blazers snapped in a big way.

Ersan Ilyasova started in place of Millsap and led the Hawks with 23 points. Tim Hardaway Jr. added 22 points, and Dwight Howard had a double-double of 14 points and 10 rebounds. Howard became the first Hawks player to have 800 rebounds in a season since Dikembe Mutombo in 1999-2000.

The Trail Blazers (31-37) have won two consecutive and avenged an overtime loss at home to the Hawks earlier this season.

Damian Lillard led five Trail Blazers, including all five starters, in double-figures scoring. He finished with a game-high 27 points. His backcourt mate C.J. McCollum scored 22 points.

The Trail Blazers made 11 of their first 12 shots as the Hawks struggled to make only two of their first 13 shots. In the opening quarter, the Trail Blazers shot 76.2 percent, and the Hawks shot 16 percent. The Trail Blazers took a 40-18 advantage after the first quarter. Lillard scored 13 points including nine of his team’s first 11 points.

The Hawks opened the second quarter with 14-4 run and closed to within 12 points, at 44-32. However, the Trail Blazers answered with a 13-4 run to regain a comfortable lead and took a 63-46 lead into halftime.

Slowing Lillard has been a priority of the Hawks. The point guard has been held to less than 20 points in five of his eight career games against the Hawks. Lillard entered the game with a 26.5 points per game average. He had 13 points minutes into the game, including a four-point play.

“Obviously we put a ton of time and effort and energy in preparing for him,” Hawks coach Mike Budenholzer said of Lillard before the game. “He’s a focal point. Now McCollum has emerged as that secondary scorer and ballhandler. We’ve always said that our bigs, this year included, and their ability to play pick-and-roll defense really has helped us be a solid defensive team. He is obviously in a ton of pick-and-rolls.”

The Hawks got as close as 12 points in the third quarter and trailed 85-73 headed into the fourth quarter. They got as close as 11 points early in the fourth quarter, but that was it. No closer.



Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Atlanta Hawks

NBA: Millsap fouled by Gortat on late drive
NBA: Millsap fouled by Gortat on late drive

Paul Millsap fell to the floor with his arms raised and pleaded for a foul call that never came. It should have. The NBA released its Last Two Minutes report from the Hawks loss to the Wizards Wednesday night in Game 5 of their Eastern Conference quarterfinal playoff series. It found three incorrect calls, including a missed foul on Millsap with 41...
Hawks continue to go without Howard down the stretch
Hawks continue to go without Howard down the stretch

Dwight Howard has found an uncomfortable seat on the bench for most of the fourth quarters of this Hawks playoff series. The starting center has played sparingly down the stretch of each game against the Wizards in the Eastern Conference quarterfinals. The Wizards lead the best-of-seven series 3-2 after a Game 5 win in Washington, D.C. on Wednesday...
How the Hawks lost another close one on the road to face elimination
How the Hawks lost another close one on the road to face elimination

Five observations from the Hawks’ 103-99 loss to the Wizards in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference first-round playoff series Wednesday. 1. The Hawks came close – again. They trailed by seven points, 98-91, with under four minutes to play but rallied to put another scare into the Wizards. They used an 8-3 run, including five straight points...
Inside the box score: Wizards 103, Hawks 99
Inside the box score: Wizards 103, Hawks 99

Inside the box score and more of the Hawks’ 103-99 loss in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference first-round series: Key players * Bradley Beal led the Wizards with 27 points despite going 1 of 9 from 3-point range. * Otto Porter Jr. gave the Wizards a third scorer with 17 points, including nine of the free-throw line. * Dennis Schroder led the Hawks...
Wizards takes series lead with narrow win over Hawks (updated)
Wizards takes series lead with narrow win over Hawks (updated)

The series has reached an elimination game. And it’s the Hawks with their backs against the wall. The Wizards again defended home court with a narrow 103-99 victory in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference quarterfinals playoff series Wednesday at the Verizon Center. The Wizards lead the series 3-2. Game 6 is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. Friday at Philips...
More Stories