Even behind a career-high of 34 points by Dennis Schroder, the Atlanta Hawks lost their fourth and final game of the season against the Brooklyn Nets 110-105.
Here are a few observations from the win/loss:
A tight game ended in heartbreak
The Hawks (11-31) led 105-104 with just over a minute remaining on Friday when Kent Bazemore stole the ball from Nets’ Quincy Acy and drove down the floor.
Schroder, who had the hot hand all night, missed a driving layup with 12 seconds left which was rebounded by the Nets’ Spencer Dinwiddie. Dinwiddle ran down the floor and sank a shot, followed by two free throws to give the Nets a 108-105 lead with 9.1 seconds left.
Dinwiddie ended Friday’s game with team highs of 20 points, 10 assists and nine rebounds.
Caris LeVert dunked with one second left to give the game its final score.
“The great Bruce Lee said you got to be like water and just keep flowing,” Kent Bazemore said. “So that’s what we’re going to do.”
Schroder scored 34 and reached 4,000 career points
Schroder scoring power was unmatched Friday in the Hawks’ first home game of 2018.
The fifth-year player from Germany scored a career-high of 34 points and recorded seven assists and three rebounds in 32 minutes.
Schroder also hit a career milestone with 6:06 remaining in the second quarter against the Nets when reached 4,000 career points.
It’s really good to have Dedmon back
After missing 19 games with a tibia stress reaction, Dedmon seemed to get his groove back against the Nets.
The 7-footer racked up 11 points and nine rebounds and was a force to deal with in the paint before fouling out late in the fourth quarter.
“I thought Dewayne was great tonight,” Hawks coach Mike Budenholzer said after the game. “Just his energy and activity and everything. Certainly maybe on one of those plays, one of those free throw rebounds, he comes up with it. But guys foul out, everybody’s got to be ready to go.”
The Hawks entered Friday’s game forcing a league-high of 16 opponent turnovers per game while the Nets were one of the worst in the league (23rd) in committing turnovers.
Over the last six games, the Hawks have scored 22.7 points per game off opponent turnovers. Against the Nets, the Hawks scored 31 points off 17 Nets’ turnovers while the Nets scored 24 off the Hawks’ 15 turnovers.
Hawks defense brought new life in second half
There was a visible difference in the energy the Hawks showed on defense in the late third quarter against the Nets, but it was overpowered late in the fourth.
The Hawks held Nets scoreless for over four minutes in the third, allowing the offense to go on a 12-0 run and eventually take the lead.
That all changed in the game’s final minutes.
On Friday, the Hawks allowed the Nets to shoot 46 percent from the field and 38.2 percent beyond the arc.
“It felt like the last three or four minutes they were either making a three, getting fouled and making a free throw or when they missed a free throw getting the rebound and making the three,” Budenholzer said. “When you’re giving up three and four point per possession, it’s not a good recipe. We have to make more winning plays at the end of games especially defensively.”
Nets had six players shoot in double-digits
The Nets (16-26) snapped their three-game losing streak behind Dinwiddie’s 20-point performance and five other Nets who scored in double-digits.
Jahill Okafor shot for 17 points, Hollis-Jefferson for 14, DeMarre Carroll for 13 and Allen Crabbe and Joe Harris with 10 apiece.
Carroll returned from injury, scored 13
In his return to Philips Arena on Friday night, Carroll scored 13 points and recorded four rebounds and four steals. Carroll entered Friday averaging 12.4 points and 6.7 rebounds.
Carroll, in his first season with the Nets, played for Atlanta for two season from 2013-2015.
Initially listed as questionable for Friday’s game, Carroll was inactive for the past two games with a knee sprain.
Nets started second half on 9-3 run
That seemed to be the theme of the first three quarters of Friday’s game.
The Hawks would tie the game near the end of the quarter and then the Nets would go on a scoring spree and build up a new lead.
To start the second half, the Nets went on a 9-3 run to lead the Hawks, 62-53.
The deficit was made up almost singlehandedly by Schroder who scored 10 of the Hawks’ 13 points while he was on the floor in the third quarter to take the lead 67-66.
Schroder was replaced by Isaiah Taylor with 4:36 left in the third quarter after earning his fourth personal foul.
The game was tied at 74 to start the fourth quarter.
“That’s what we’re capable of,” Bazemore said. “The stuff for us is learn how to get over the top and actually close games. We have guys down the stretch making big plays, some big shots for us to keep our head above water, but it’s obviously small things we have to continue to do to get better and win.”
Dorsey balled out
Tyler Dorsey proved he’s becoming a capable player off the bench on Friday, shooting 3-of-5 beyond the arc for nine points in 14 minutes.
Dorsey played in 16 other games, including the four most recent, and averaged 2.4 points and 0.9 rebounds.
Dorsey’s biggest play of the night came in the third quarter when he hit a 3-pointer to give the Hawks their first lead of the game in the second half, 67-66.
“He’s locked in,” Bazemore said of Dorsey. “He understands it’s a long season and he got his name called tonight, even on the (five-game) road trip. He’s playing well and getting his feet wet.”
Collins dunked to tie the game in the first
The Nets started Friday’s game by getting a 13-4 jump on the Hawks.
Over the quarter, the Hawks chipped away at the lead by spreading the ball around between the starters and help from the bench but the most memorable play was with 1:03 left in the first quarter when Collins tied up the game at 25 with a vicious dunk.
Collins finished Friday’s game with five points and 10 rebounds.
Hawks played catchup in the second quarter
After ending the first quarter tied at 25, the Nets started second quarter on a 9-3 run and the Hawks had to play catchup for the remainder of the first half.
Schroder, who scored nine points in the last seven minutes of the half, tied the game at 47, then again at 50 with a 3-pointer with 1:21 remaining in the first half.
Schroder totaled 13 points, four assists and two rebounds in the first half.
The Nets led 53-50 at halftime.
Next up: The Hawks will host the San Antonio Spurs Monday at 3:30 p.m. at Philips Arena.