2017 NBA Playoffs
Eastern Conference First Round Game #2
#5 Atlanta Hawks at #4 Washington Wizards
Wizards Lead Best of Seven Series 1-0
Wednesday, April 19, 2017, 7:00 pm Eastern, TV: NBA TV
Verizon Center – Washington, District of Columbia
Opening Line: Washington -6
Current Line: Washington -5 (-115)
Opening Total: 212
Current Total: 212
Opening Money Line: Wizards -240 / Hawks +199
Current Money Line: Wizards -220 / Hawks +180
The 49-33 Washington Wizards beat the Southeast Division rival the 43-39 Atlanta Hawks 114-107 in game one of the Eastern Conference quarterfinals Sunday. The Wizards are the #4 seed and the Hawks are the #5 seed. Game two is Wednesday night in Washington.
Atlanta is coached by Mike Budenholzer. The Hawks are 39-44 ATS and the total is 33-48-2. Washington is coached by Scott Brooks. The Wizards are 43-39-1 ATS and the total is 52-31 this season.
The Wizards were a 5.5 point favorite in game one and the total was 209.5. The Hawks took a 29-25 at the end of the first and led 48-45 at halftime. Washington led by as many as 13 points in the third quarter but would lead 83-76 going into the fourth. The Wizards never trailed in the fourth and led by as many as 15 points. Washington held on for the seven point win.
Atlanta shot 34/78 from the field including 7/25 from three point range. The Hawks made 32/39 free throws. Atlanta had 48 rebounds, 18 assists, 21 turnovers, 5 steals and 3 blocks. The Hawks had 16 fast break points and 46 points in the paint. Washington shot 45/100 from the field including 8/28 from three point range. The Wizards made 16/17 free throws. Washington had 42 rebounds, 28 assists, 12 assists, 8 steals and 9 blocks. The Wizards had 25 fast break points and 54 points in the paint.
Washington guard John Wall had 32 points, 14 assists and 4 rebounds. Bradley Beal had 22 points, 3 rebounds, 3 assists and 3 steals. Markieff Morris has 21 points, 7 rebounds, 2 assists, 4 blocks and a steal. Marcin Gortat, Otto Porter, Jr. and Kelly Oubre, Jr. also scored in double digits.
Atlanta guard Dennis Schroder had 25 points, 9 assists, 3 rebounds and a steal. Paul Millsap had 19 points. Taurean Prince had 14 points and 6 rebounds. Kent Bazemore had 12 points, 4 assists and 3 rebounds.
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Atlanta is being outscored 104-103 this season. The Hawks are #10 in points allowed but #22 in scoring. Atlanta is shooting 45.1% from the field and 34.1% from 3 point range. Atlanta is shooting 72.8% from the free throw line and are #28 in that category. Opponents are shooting 44.4% from the field and 35.7% from 3 point range. The Hawks are #5 in field goal defense. Atlanta averages 44.4 rebounds and opponents average 43.9 per game. The Hawks are #9 in rebounding. Atlanta averages 23.6 assists, 14.2 turnovers, 8.2 steals and 4.8 blocks per game.
Forward Paul Millsap averages 18.1 points, 7.7 rebounds, 3.7 assists, and 1.3 steals per game. Dennis Schroder averages 17.9 points, 3.1 rebounds, 6.3 assists and 1 steal per game. Tim Hardaway, Jr. averages 14.5 points, 2.8 rebounds and 2.3 assists per game. Dwight Howard averages 13.5 points, 12.7 rebounds, 1.4 assists, and 1.2 blocks per game. Howard is probable with a back injury. Kent Bazemore averages 11 points, 3.2 rebounds, 2.4 assists and 1.3 steals per game. Ersan Ilyasova averages 10.4 points, 5.8 rebounds and 1.6 assists. Thabo Sefolosha, Mike Muscala, Taurean Prince, Mike Dunleavy, Malcolm Delaney, Kris Humphries and Jose Calderon will alos get minutes in the rotation.
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Washington is outscoring teams 109-107 this season. The Wizards are #5 in scoring but #21 in points allowed in the NBA. Washington is shooting 47.5% from the field and 37.2% from 3 point range. The Wizards are in the top ten in both categories. Washington makes 78.4% from the free throw line. Opponents are shooting 46.6% from the field and 36.4% from 3 point range. Washington is #20 or worse in both categories. The Wizards average 42.8 rebounds per game and opponents average 43 per game. The Wizards average 23.9 assists, 13.5 turnovers, 8.5 steals and 4.1 blocks per game.
John Wall averages 23.1 points, 4.2 rebounds, 10.7 assists and 2 blocks per game. Bradley Beal averages 23.1 points, 3.1 rebounds, 3.5 assists and 1.1 steals per game. Markieff Morris averages 14 points, 6.5 rebounds, 1.7 assists and 1.1 steals per game. Otto Porter, Jr. averages 13.4 points, 6.5 rebounds, 1.5 assists and 1.5 steals per game. Bojan Bogdanovic averages 12.7 points and 3.1 assists per game. Marcin Gortat averages 10.8 points, 10.4 rebounds and 1.5 assists per game. Marcus Thornton, Kelly Oubre, Jr., Jason Smith, Ian Mahinmi. Trey Burke and Brandon Jennings will also get time in the rotation Oubre is probable with a knee injury. Mahinmi is out until late April with a calf injury.
Atlanta is 5-2 ATS against teams with winning records, 4-9 after an ATS loss, 4-12 against Southeast teams, and 1-4 after a straight up loss.
Washington is 7-0 ATS in first round games, 6-2 against Eastern Conference teams, 20-8 on two days rest, 22-10-1 after a cover, 15-7 against teams with losing road records, and 2-6 against teams with winning records.
If Atlanta tries to get into a track meet with Washington, this could be a short series. The Hawks need to slow them down and and play in the 90’s. I don’t think they can, and I like the Wizards to win a close high scoring game.