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After a blowout loss in Game One, the Atlanta Hawks showed significantly more resolve in Game Two. But, unfortunately, their best still wasn’t good enough. The Heat took the game and headed to Atlanta with a 2-0 series lead.
With 2:30 left in the game, Trae Young had a good look to tie the game at 104. Instead, the three rattled out, and Jimmy Butler took it down the court for an uncontested dunk. It was a microcosm of the game.
Young had to grind out 25 points on 50% shooting, while Butler glided to a smooth 45-point performance. To make matters worse, Young turned the ball over 10 times. Danilo Gallinari finally cooled off for the Hawks, scoring just 2 points.
The game wasn’t without some theatrics. While the Hawks made it clear they would not bully, Kyle Lowry took it upon himself to mess with fellow Philadelphia-native De’Andre Hunter. See the bizarre video below (before they got double technicals).
Hawks head coach Nate McMillan said, “I think the difference in the game tonight was turnovers. You can’t have 19 turnovers in a playoff game and expect to win games. They scored 21 points off of our turnovers, a lot of those came in transition – 20 points in fastbreak points, and I thought that was the difference tonight.”
A visibly displeased Trae Young answered questions quickly and candidly. “Obviously, we felt we let one slide. You can’t let it linger too far. We got another game in a couple days.”
Young then took a shot at the officials. “Obviously, we felt we let one slip away. But if the refs are going to let them be as physical as they are and not call fouls, I mean, it’s going to be hard to really do anything anyways. So got to be a little bit better with knowing where we got to be and just be ready to take care of home.”
Game Three is in Atlanta on Friday night. We will always have plenty of content for you between now and tip-off. Stay locked into Sports Illustrated’s AllHawks.com for breaking news, highlights, and analysis.
Teams that take a 2-0 lead in a best-of-seven matchup have eventually won the series 92.4% of the time. The Hawks have never rallied from 0-2 down in a series (0-25), and the Heat have never wasted a 2-0 lead (17-0) — but there were four such rallies in last season’s playoffs, two by the Los Angeles Clippers and two others by Milwaukee.
Bogdan Bogdanovic – 29 PTS, 4 REB
Trae Young – 25 PTS, 7 REB
De’Andre Hunter – 16 PTS, 2 REB
Jimmy Butler – 45 PTS, 5 REB
Tyler Herro – 15 PTS, 3 REB
Max Strus – 14 PTS, 4 REB