On a career night for rookie Cam Reddish, the Hawks (19-45) couldn’t quite come back from a 19-point deficit in a 118-112 loss to the Wizards Friday.
Below are some takeaways from the loss:
1. Exactly one week after posting a career-high 26 points in the Hawks’ win vs. the Nets, rookie Cam Reddish did it again with 28 points (which was also a team-high) in a loss to the Wizards. At one point in the first quarter, courtesy of two pull-up jumpers and two 3-pointers, Reddish scored 10 points in 83 seconds. Scoring early helped him establish a rhythm, and he ultimately went 11-for-17 from the field and 5-for-7 from 3-point range. Reddish was a plus-8 and is now averaging 10.3 points per game. The energy and aggression Reddish played with, though, also led to a career-high seven turnovers (as a team, the Hawks had 17 turnovers). “Found my rhythm,” Reddish said. “I was able to see shots go down pretty early and really just staying with it, staying aggressive. That was just the result of it.”
2. It seemed over in the third quarter, but the Hawks made it interesting in the fourth, and John Collins scoring 16 points was a big reason why. Collins had a double-double of 26 points (10-15 FG, 1-3 from 3, 5-5 FT) and 10 rebounds overall, but didn’t really start rolling until the fourth. After trailing by as much as 19, the Hawks’ offense woke up in the form of a 10-3 run to start the fourth quarter, a 3-pointer by Collins pulling the Hawks within 11 at the 9:49 mark. They got within four points off a putback by Collins with 1:50 to go and were down four again after he made two free throws at the 16-second mark, but couldn’t overtake the Wizards in the final seconds. “I wanted to come out with a sense of urgency and try to just affect the game any way I could, offense, defense. ... I wanted to play hard,” Collins said.
3. Washington’s Bradley Beal gave the Hawks trouble all night, finishing with a game-high 35 points (13-21 FG, 7-10 from 3, 2-2 FT) and four assists. The Wizards started the second half on a 12-2 run, a 3-pointer by Beal making it 76-59 at the 7:59 mark (there wouldn’t have been as much ground for the Hawks to try and cover had the Wizards not picked up steam toward the end of the second quarter and outscored them 29-18 in the third). With the crazy numbers he has been putting up (averaging 36.2 points per game in February, scoring 53 in a loss to Chicago Feb. 23 and 55 in a loss to Milwaukee Feb. 24), Beal finally leapfrogged the Hawks’ Trae Young as the second-highest scorer in the league (30.4). Reddish made Beal work, and the Hawks held him to 15 in the second half after 20 in the first, but they couldn’t slow him down much. “Bradley, he’s 3-for-3 on his first three shots from 3 and he just kept going,” Hawks coach Lloyd Pierce said. “We were trying to switch up the floor and he’s shooting off the dribble, deep 3’s. We missed him a couple times and he gets some spray-outs. Once we were able to contain him a little bit in the second half, it really slowed up their offense.”
4. Young was sick and unavailable for this game, so the Hawks started Jeff Teague in his stead. It was Kevin Huerter, however, that took over as playmaker, tallying a career-high 11 assists. Huerter had a double-double, adding 14 points. This was his first career points/assists double-double. Teague added five assists and nine points, with Brandon Goodwin adding three assists and Reddish adding two.
5. Without Young, this isn’t the biggest surprise, but the Wizards had a major edge at the line, going 31-for-35 (88.6%) to the Hawks’ 8-for-12 (66.7%). Davis Bertans himself went 8-for-10. Collins led the Hawks in free throws by going 5-for-5. Young specializes in drawing fouls, averaging 9.3 free-throw attempts per game. “We really missed Trae, in that regard,” Pierce said. “He’s been our leader all year getting to the free-throw line and putting them in some predicaments. And they did a tremendous job of doing that. Obviously, some of them, I go back to the free-throw box-out, which is the key when Bertans ends up shooting six free throws in one stretch.”
By the numbers
37-25 (what the Hawks outscored the Wizards by in the fourth quarter to rally)
“You’re just out of reach, and those mistakes that you could have taken care of earlier in the game come back to bite you.” (John Collins on the Hawks’ 19-point deficit)
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