Atlanta Hawks forward Jabari Parker (5) and forward De'Andre Hunter (12) reach for a rebound against the Milwaukee Bucks in the first half of an NBA basketball game, Wednesday, Nov. 20, 2019, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/Brett Davis)
Photo: Brett Davis/AP
Photo: Brett Davis/AP

Hawks rally in fourth quarter, but can’t overtake Bucks

With a 135-127 loss to the Bucks Wednesday at State Farm Arena, the Hawks have now lost four straight games.

Below are some takeaways from the game:

1. Even in a loss, rookies Cam Reddish and De’Andre Hunter both had great games, which is encouraging for the Hawks moving forward. Hunter registered a double-double with a career-high 27 points (going 8-for-12 from the field and 3-for-3 from 3-point range) and a career-high 11 rebounds and Reddish registered a career-high 17 points (6-for-10 from the field) in the loss, to go with three rebounds. The pair started off a combined 10-for-12 from the field and helped the Hawks transform a 10-point deficit into a 61-58 lead at the half. “I thought the first half, from an offensive standpoint, was probably our best half of the year. A lot of execution,” Hawks coach Lloyd Pierce said. “But to see Cam and to see De’Andre Hunter really (be) involved in that first half, and we were executing our offense, moving from side to side, just getting rhythm looks, that was really the reason why we were up in the first half.” 

2. Milwaukee’s Giannis Antetokounmpo was held to 12 points in a quiet first half before scoring 12 in just the first four-and-a-half minutes of the third quarter alone (the Bucks used a big 38-point third to pull ahead). The Hawks couldn’t reign in Antetokounmpo, who finished with 33 points and 11 rebounds, once he got going, or Eric Bledsoe, for that matter, who had 28 points, seven rebounds and five assists. “In the third quarter, I just thought we had no answer for Giannis,” Pierce said. “He just started putting his head down. We didn’t have the gaps closed, defensively, and he was getting in the paint and getting to the foul line. We just didn’t have an answer for him when he played with a little sense of urgency.” 

3. The Hawks entered the fourth quarter trailing 96-83 and trailed by 19 at the 3:42 mark. They weren’t struggling to score, just couldn’t get stops -- but just as the game started winding down, they started pressing and went on a 13-1 run over the next 1:32 to make it a game, 126-119, with 2:10 left, forcing four turnovers over that span. They kept fighting, with a driving layup by Trae Young (who finished with 25 points, eight assists and three steals) making it a seven-point game, 132-125, but couldn’t narrow it down any further than that. 

4. Young didn’t have the best day from 3-point range, making 1 of 5 attempts -- however, as a team, the Hawks shot their best percentage from behind the arc (45.2%). Getting Vince Carter back (who missed the west coast road trip due to the birth of his daughter) and Allen Crabbe progressing from his right knee arthroscopy gives the Hawks some more offensive weapons to work with (Carter added three 3’s and Crabbe added two). The Hawks entered the game shooting 29.7% from 3-point range, good for last in the league. They made 14 total, which is second-most of the season (the most was 15 in the win vs. Denver, when Young himself drained eight). 

5. With the loss, the shorthanded Hawks, who are missing John Collins and Kevin Huerter, move to 4-10 on the season. They’ve lost four straight and seven of their last eight. They’ll look to turn things around at 7 p.m. Friday in Detroit.

By the numbers 

8 (the amount of shots the Bucks blocked) 

Quotable 

“I was just in rhythm. To hit my first couple shots definitely helps a lot and I was just confident.” (De’Andre Hunter on his career night)

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