3. After starting the third quarter off with an energetic 7-0 run, the Hawks were more competitive for the rest of the game. They actually outscored the Grizzlies in the second half, 56-52, but couldn’t get within striking distance after trailing by as much as 26 in the first half. A 3-pointer by Treveon Graham made it a 14-point game with 6:19 to play, and a 3 by Vince Carter did the same with 3:44 left, but that was the most the Hawks could whittle away at the deficit. “I thought our guys brought out a fight in the second half after really just getting frustrated early in the first quarter,” Hawks coach Lloyd Pierce said. “It’s tough. ... The ball’s not falling. Some of it was their effort, and a lot of it we missed a lot of open shots, and we just couldn’t get in rhythm. I thought our guys came out and competed in the second half, especially to start the third quarter.”
4. Jonas Valanciunas dominating the Hawks is a prime example of how they’re missing Clint Capela, who is still rehabbing from a right heel injury. They didn’t have an answer for the big center, who bullied them with 27 points and 17 rebounds (seven offensive, 10 defensive), adding three blocked shots. “He’s a load,” Pierce said. “It’s tough. You’re trying to crowd the paint. When they miss, you feel like you’re always in a bad spot. Just a big body. I thought our guys did a better job of just putting a body on him and he still was effective.” Rookie of the year candidate Ja Morant added 24 points and six assists, and Josh Jackson had 17 points.
5. Cam Reddish exited the game with 8:20 to go in the second quarter, was diagnosed with lower limb cramping and did not return to the game. It wasn’t an injury, but just cramping, per Pierce. Before exiting, he had nine points and three assists in about 12 minutes. Reddish has struggled to stay healthy as of late, missing four games in early February with a concussion and missing Monday’s loss with low back pain.
By the numbers
49.4% (what the Grizzlies shot from the field)
“Big fella down low is a beast. ... I don’t even have to look at the stat sheet to know that he got a lot of rebounds.” (Trae Young on Jonas Valanciunas)