The Atlanta Hawks are flying high in the first round of the 2021 NBA playoffs.
Trae Young and John Collins combined for 49 points as the Hawks broke out in the third quarter to eventually take Game 4 against the New York Knicks 113-96. Atlanta now has a 3-1 lead in the series and can close things out in Game 5 at Madison Square Garden.
Young struggled from the floor, going 9-21 but still managed to net 27 points and dish nine assists. Collins was efficient, going 6-10 from the floor for 22 points. The Hawks were also buoyed by their 3-point shooting, hitting 15 triples compared to New York’s nine.
After going into halftime with a 53-49 lead, the Hawks immediately took control with a 15-5 run to open the second half. The Knicks cut the deficit to 68-61 on a layup from Taj Gibson, but Atlanta closed the quarter on a 20-10 advantage with Bogdan Bogdanovic hitting a triple to close out the frame.
Julius Randle had 23 points, seven assists and 10 rebounds but went 7-19 from the field. Derrick Rose and RJ Barrett combined to add 39 points but the real issue was New York’s failure to defend the 3-point line. The Hawks hit 16 triples in a Game 3 win and added 15 in Game 4. If the Knicks continue to give up open perimeter shots, this series will be over sooner than expected.
Game 5 is June 2 in New York.