The Hawks knew they wanted to get a lob, with 0.5 second left on the clock. But the Bulls read the situation, and Trae Young recognized that they wouldn’t get the right person open and called timeout.
Then the Hawks reset, and Johnson found a cutting Griffin for the game-winning shot.
“Our guys did a good job of paying attention and executing that play,” Hawks coach Nate McMillan said. “To give us the win, and, you know, we had some players to make some big plays tonight.”
The Hawks improved to 3-0 in overtime games this season.
2. Griffin has given the Hawks some solid minutes over the last five games. As a starter, Griffin has averaged 14.2 points per game and has continued to earn the trust of not only the coaching staff but also his teammates.
The 19-year-old scored 17 points, grabbed two rebounds and recorded two assists Sunday.
With the added responsibility, Griffin has had to adjust to the way NBA defenses have adapted to his play. But the Hawks have been proud of how he has continued to approach the game.
That’s how he found himself as the guy the team could lean on to make the game-winning play for the second time in the last 11 games.
“Like everything, really, just having that confidence from the coach to be able to go out there and execute,” Griffin said. “I think, even just, playing through the mistakes, knowing that the shots are not falling and being able to continue to just keep playing.”
3. After lighting up the court from 3-point range Friday night, Bogdanovic got hot again from distance Sunday. The Hawks sharpshooter was 6 of 14 from 3-point range, with his final two giving the team some breathing room. He finished with 28 points.
While Bogdanovic hit several darts from distance, he also hit a couple of trick shots that blew the minds of fans. As Bulls forward Derrick Jones closed out on him, Bogdanovic took the ball baseline and put the ball up. It went over the backboard as Bogdanovic fell out of bounds.
It’s the second game in a row that Bogdanovic has scored more than 25 points – and went over his minutes restriction.
But the 30-year-old insists he feels well and is grateful to be back in the swing of things.
“Thanks to them for letting me play,” Bogdanovic said. “They understand as well. They really understand and thanks to my coaching staff, all of them. They believe (in) me, they trust me, and we build a bond between us, and they believe ... I don’t feel like tightness and soreness in the tendon. Yeah, I’m physically, conditionally a little bit tired. But that’s normal (after) the first couple games, playing 30 minutes. It’s normal.”
4. Bogdanovic and the rest of the Hawks looked to be aggressive Sunday night as they snapped their losing streak. The Hawks moved the ball well despite committing 15 turnovers.
They doled out 28 assists, which resulted in 67 points.
Young accounted for half of the team’s assists, as he shouldered the ballhandling responsibility in the absence of Dejounte Murray (right ankle sprain). Young had an off-night scoring-wise but made sure to get his teammates in the right spots.
“That’s our mindset coming, every night is to move the ball,” Young said. “Sometimes the ball’s going in more than others. Early on tonight, the ball was going in, and we were getting good looks, and guys were getting shots at the rim and also in the perimeter, too, and we were knocking it down early on.”
5. Chicago’s Andre Drummond cut off the Hawks’ option to turn to the lob game. He had five steals, many of them on Hawks attempts to find their bigs down low. Drummond finished one steal shy of his career high.
He pulled down nine rebounds, making it difficult for the Hawks on the glass.
In addition to Drummond’s presence on the glass, the Bulls had a huge effort from DeMar DeRozan, who had a season-high 13 rebounds to go with 34 points.
Stat to know
Griffin is only the second rookie in NBA history with multiple game-winning buzzer-beaters in a season, along with Toni Kukoč in 1993-94.
“A cool club to be in. You know, I wasn’t born then, but my dad (and) to be able to have that, I guess just to be in that club, it’s definitely (a) blessing.” – Griffin on joining Kukoč as the only other rookie to have multiple game-winners at the buzzer.
The Hawks kick off a five-day, three-game trip on Monday against the Grizzlies.