|Team||Point Spread||Total||Money Line|
|Atlanta Hawks||+2 (-110)
|O 212.5 (-115)
|New York Knicks||-2 (-110)
|U 212.5 (-105)
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|Game 1 came down to a single basket, but it was the Knicks who came up short. New York showed their ability to rebound from a poor start and showed the defensive ability to keep the Hawks in check. They’re not likely to let the Hawks leave Madison Square Garden with two straight wins.|
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|Atlanta Hawks vs New York Knicks Information|
|Teams||Atlanta Hawks vs New York Knicks|
|Location||Madison Square Garden, New York, New York|
|Time||7:30 PM EST, May 26th, 2021|
|How to Watch||TNT|
|Atlanta Hawks||Head-to-Head||New York Knicks|
|Nate McMillan||Head Coach||Tom Thibodeau|
|41-31 (5th in East)||Standing||41-31 (4th in East)|
|115.7 (8th of 30)||Off Rtg||110.6 (23rd of 30)|
|113.3 (21st of 30)||Def Rtg||108.2 (3rd of 30)|
|97.6 (23rd of 30)||Pace||95.9 (30th of 30)|
Leaders (Per Game)
|T. Young (25.3)||PPG||J. Randle (24.1)|
|C. Capela (14.3)||RPG||J. Randle (10.2)|
|T. Young (9.4)||APG||J. Randle (6.0)|
|C. Reddish (1.3)||SPG||N. Noel, M. Robinson (1.1)|
|C. Capela (2.0)||BPG||N. Noel (2.2)|
|O. Okongwu (.644)/T. Young (7.7)||FG%/FGM||M. Robinson (.653)/J. Randle (8.5)|
|T. Snell (.569)/B. Bogdanovic (3.3)||3P%/3PM||F. Ntilikina (.479)/R. Bullock (2.5)|
The New York Knicks failed to impress in the opening of their first playoff appearance since 2013. While they lost by just one, they need to improve on their aggression from the tip.
In the first quarter, the Knicks shot 26.9% from the field and made just seven field goals. They battled on the glass, but they just couldn’t find their range past an energetic Hawks defence.
New York were able to fight their way back through three more quarters, but they can’t afford to dig themselves into another hole in Game 2. With Atlanta’s scoring versatility, the Knicks need to clamp up and find easy baskets for themselves.
Julius Randle for the lead… BANG! pic.twitter.com/4ZZUvbxNTO
— NEW YORK KNICKS (@nyknicks) May 24, 2021
Julius Randle played in his first ever playoff game and it was a dud. While he still put in a great effort, the All-Star ability that showed all season was nowhere to be found.
Randle closed out the loss posting just 15 points, 12 rebounds, and four assists on six of 23 shooting from the field.
Randle is the leader of this Knicks group, but he needs to adapt to the playoffs quickly. If New York’s All-Star can’t come to grips with the defensive intensity of the playoffs, the Knicks are in trouble.
The Atlanta Hawks were solid in their first game against the Knicks, but still have areas where they can improve. Most notably, they can’t simply rely on Trae Young to make plays.
Young played 35 minutes and accounted for 10 of the Hawks’ 17 assists on the evening. While Young justifiably is the highest usage player on Atlanta’s roster, the role players must do more the create opportunities for each other.
There aren’t many natural playmakers on the Hawks outside of Young, but veteran guard Lou Williams would be their next best bet. That doesn’t mean the likes of Collins and Bogdanovic can’t do more to recognize opportunities for others though.
TRAE. YOUNG. BALLGAME. pic.twitter.com/tk3fZdGL6U
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) May 24, 2021
In his first ever playoff game, Hawks guard Trae Young showed that he’s ready for prime time. On top of an excellent performance Young nailed the game winner, wrestling home court advantage away from New York.
In the Hawks’ victory, Young posted 32 points, 10 assists, and seven rebounds on 11 of 23 shooting from the field.
The Knicks had difficulty containing Young in Game 1. How he starts the game and creates for others will determine if the Hawks can leave New York with two wins.
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Christian Jope is a writer, social media strategist, and data analyst. A Queen’s University Alumni, Christian is an author and social media strategist with Raptors Cage, while also working closely with MLSE and Canada Basketball through community-driven events.
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