Atlanta Hawks continue to soar; Claim ninth straight win


Editor’s note: This is the debut post for our newest staff writer, Darren Mitchell. He is a significant and welcome addition to the ATL All Day staff. Welcome, Darren!


The Atlanta Hawks extended their longest single-season winning streak in 17 seasons to nine games against a physical Orlando Magic squad on Friday at Phillips Arena. The 16-6 Hawks overcame a mediocre first half to harness some third quarter energy, and that was enough to hold on for an 87-81 win.

Strong defense from both teams set the tone for the entire night as each squad held the other to under 40% scoring efficiency. Both teams also finished strong on the boards, with each 37 defensive rebounds. Jeff Teague led the Hawks with 4 steals and Paul Millsap pulled 8 rebounds. The strong defense of Atlanta could not contain the range of Magic guard Victor Oladipo, as he went 3 for 3 beyond the arc and scored 19 points. However, Paul Millsap was clutch when needed, scoring 23 points with 9 of those coming from downtown.

The Hawks were able to hold Orlando’s leading scorer, Tobias Harris, to just 13 points and Atlanta won the turnover battle on the strength of 12 steals. Those turnovers, along with physical defensive play from DeMarre Carroll and Dennis Schröder completed another strong defensive performance for Atlanta. Fast break points continue to be an effective piece to Coach Mike Budenholzer’s squad as they collect 11 of those clutch points on the way to the victory.

The Atlanta Hawks will look to sweep the two-game series as they travel south to Florida to face the Magic again on Saturday night. Stay tuned to ATL All Day for all the latest on the team as they continue to ascend in the Eastern Conference standings.