Tonight, the Atlanta Hawks welcomed fans back to State Farm Arena for the first time in 321 days, as they took on the Los Angeles Clippers. It was also the second unity night of the season, as the home team wore their special MLK-themed uniforms. The Clippers arrived in Atlanta riding a seven-game winning streak and the Hawks snapped it, as they beat the Clippers 108-99.
Trae Young led all scorers had 38 points, with 26 of them in the second half. Additionally, Young did not have a turnover in the second half. De’Andre Hunter chipped in with 22, Kevin Huerter and Clint Capela had 13 points each. Also had nineteen rebounds, nine on the offensive end. Capela has 65 rebounds in the last three games.
The Hawks are sixth in the NBA’s Eastern Conference.
Coming into tonight’s action, the Clippers would be without megastars Kawhi Leonard and Paul George, due to virus protocols. The team would not specify what protocols necessitated their absences. However, with contact tracing underway and both players not traveling to Atlanta with the team on Monday, there’s a chance the Clippers could be without both Kawhi Leonard and Paul George for the entire 10-day road trip. Patrick Beverley would not play due to knee soreness.
On the floor for Los Angeles, Reggie Jackson led the Clippers with 20 points. Serge Ibaka added 15 points, five rebounds, and three blocks.
Heading into tonight’s game, Hawks forward John Collins was shooting 53.8% and averaging 16.8 points per game. He had eleven points and eleven rebounds and five blocks in 35 minutes of action tonight. Collins also averages 7.8 rebounds and 16.6 points per game over the last 10 games for Atlanta.
There were 1,300 fans inside State Farm Arena, seated in a socially distant manner, as the team honored their partnership Emory Healthcare.
“On this special night, we look forward to welcoming our Season Ticket Members to the game as we celebrate our partners at Emory Healthcare. During this COVID-19 pandemic, the staff at Emory Healthcare has risen to the occasion in caring for patients and continuing to improve the lives and provide hope for the Atlanta community,” said Hawks and State Farm Arena Chief Revenue Officer Andrew Saltzman. “We are employing elevated health and safety protocols as well as leveraging the vast industry expertise of Emory Healthcare so that we are ready for a gradual and safe return of fans to our home games.”
Rajon Rondo did not injure his ankle after turning it in the first quarter. Trae Young played even though he was listed with back spasms. Cam Reddish was out due to a sore Achilles’ and his status for the next game is uncertain.
The Hawks will return to State Farm Arena Wednesday night as they take on the Brooklyn Nets. Tip-off is scheduled for 7:30 PM.