Paul Millsap was a late scratch to the Hawks’ starting lineup Saturday because of flu-like symptoms.
The Hawks’ All-Star power forward was replaced in the starting lineup by Pero Antic for Game 3 of the Eastern Conference semifinal series against the Wizards at the Verizon Center.
Millsap entered the game with 7:09 remaining in the first quarter. He played 14:18 in the first half and had six points and two rebounds. He started the second half with the Hawks trailing by 13 points.
Hawks coach Mike Budenholzer was asked before the game if all players were healthy, and he said there were no issues.
Millsap finished eight points, on 2 of 6 shooting, and two rebounds in 23 minutes.
The Wizards’ John Wall missed Game 3 with multiple fractures in his left hand. The All-Star point guard suffered the injury in Game 1 of the series and also missed Game 2.
Wizards coach Randy Wittman offered no long-term prognosis before Game 3 other than Wall could not play.
The Wizards won Game 1 of the series in Atlanta as Wall had 18 points and 13 assists. They lost Game 2 without their star guard.
Wall told ESPN during an in-game interview that he hoped to begin dribbling in two or three days. Game 4 is Monday.
Wittman said the Wizards would have to be more cognizant of good ball movement without Wall.
“I’m not going to put someone on the floor that’s John,” Wittman said. “I’ve just got to be who we are. We have to play within ourselves. We have to be aggressive. We’ve got to have more ball movement because John makes a lot of plays. The ball is in his hands a lot.”
Ramon Sessions started both games in place of Wall.
As for Hawks players, they gave little concern about facing the Wizards with or without their best player.
“You don’t want to get wrapped up in a game plan for somebody and then they don’t play,” Shelvin Mack said. “You focus on the things you can control which is ourselves and our attitude.”
Most Improved consideration
The Bulls’ Jimmy Butler won the NBA’s Most Improved Player on Thursday and was presented with the award Friday. The Hawks’ Dennis Schroder and DeMarre Carroll received votes for the award.
Butler easily won the honor with 535 points, including 92 of 129 first-place votes.
Schroder finished ninth with six points with one second-place and three third-place votes. Carroll finished 10th with five points, as he garnered one first-place votes from Cedric Maxwell, the former Celtics player of WEEI radio.
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution does not vote in postseason awards as a matter of newspaper policy.
Schroder was the catalyst of the Hawks’ furious fourth-quarter, reserve-led comeback in the 103-101 Game 3 loss to the Wizards Saturday. The backup point guard finished with a team-high 18 points, 16 in the fourth quarter. Schroder was 5 of 8 from the field and 5 of 5 from the free-throw line as he played all by 52 seconds on the final period.
The Hawks outscored the Wizards 35-18 in the final quarter to nearly come back from a 21-point deficit. Schroder scored seven of the Hawks’ final 10 points, all except Mike Muscala’s game-tying 3-pointer with 14.1 seconds left.
Game 6 schedule
If Game 6 is necessary, it will be Friday at either 7 p.m. or 8 p.m. and will be televised by ESPN. The game will be played at 7 p.m. if a Game 6 is necessary in the Grizzlies-Warriors series and at 8 p.m. if the Grizzlies and Warriors don’t play.