The Atlanta Hawks have won their 8th straight game to move to (15-6) on the season. After dispatching of the Philadelphia 76ers on Wednesday night, four out of their last five wins have been by double figures. Right now, Atlanta is pummeling teams home and away. After an average start to the season, the Hawks quickly turned it around. they’ve been overshadowed by Cleveland’s play, but they’ll have a chance to make a statement soon.
It’s been an impressive streak so far, but the way Atlanta plays has been the most impressive thing of all. Five players average double figure points, but Jeff Teague leads the team with 16.9 points per game. The Hawks’ balance is the strength to the offensive consistency. Across the board, Atlanta doesn’t have individual players with eye-popping statistics. Instead, they utilize flashy ball movement, and player movement to create open looks.
For example, five players shoot higher than 36 percent from three point range. Led by Kyle Korver’s 56 percent, every player plays a different position, so opposing defenses have to be wary of who’s beyond the arc at all times. That alone helps Teague and Schroder penetrate the lane for easy scores. Currently, Atlanta has 10 players shooting better than 45 percent from the field. If the easy shots continue, the percentages will remain high.
The Hawks are 8th in scoring and 9th in scoring defense. Their well rounded efforts need to be up to the challenge as the schedule gets deeper into December. In the near future, Atlanta’s winning streak will be put under a great test. Starting Friday, the Hawks have a home and home series with the Orlando Magic. Then the schedule gets deep into NBA title contenders. After a home game with Chicago, Atlanta hit’s the road for a three game stretch. They face Cleveland, Houston, and Dallas in consecutive games, before coming home to face the Clippers.
These next two weeks will be the most important, on the NBA schedule for the Atlanta Hawks. For one, if they stretch their winning streak to 14 games, then Atlanta will be a surefire Eastern Conference contender.