The Brooklyn Nets and the Atlanta Hawks will both be gunning for a victory on 3/26/2017 at 1:05 PM when they meet in a game matchup.
Brooklyn Nets vs Atlanta Hawks
When: 1:00 PM ET, Sunday, March 26, 2017
Where: Philips Arena, Atlanta, Georgia
|701||Brooklyn Nets||-6.5 (-110)||216 (-110)||210
TV: 1 p.m. ET, YES (Brooklyn), FSN Southeast (Atlanta)
PREDICTION: Hawks 107, Nets 95
Oddsmakers currently have the ATLANTA listed as -6.5 point favorites versus the BROOKLYN, while the game’s total is sitting at 216.
ATLANTA — Two weeks ago, the Atlanta Hawks were facing what appeared to be a favorable stretch of games and had hopes of playing their way into a first-round homecourt playoff advantage.
But a six-game losing streak not only scuttled those hopes, it has complicated their postseason plans.
The Hawks (37-35) will try to end the skid on Sunday against the last-place Brooklyn Nets (15-57), the team with the worst record in the NBA.
Atlanta lost 100-97 at Milwaukee on Friday, leaving the teams tied for fifth place, although the Hawks own the tiebreaker. Atlanta is one game ahead of No. 7 Indiana and two games ahead of No. 8 Miami.
“Whether it’s a defensive rebound or a better decision, those plays add up to winning, and we’ve just got to make a few more of those winning plays,” Atlanta coach Mike Budenholzer said.
It would also help the Hawks to get forward Paul Millsap and guard Kent Bazemore back from untimely injuries.
Millsap, who averages a team-high 18.1 points and 7.7 rebounds, has missed the last four games because of left knee tightness. Bazemore, who averages 11 points and is the Hawks’ most intensive player, has missed three games because of a right knee bone bruise.
There is a chance that Millsap could play against the Nets, but Bazemore will miss the game.
The Hawks have lost their last two games by a combined seven points, leaving the team to be optimistic, despite the drop in the standings.
“There is frustration,” Atlanta guard Tim Hardaway Jr. said. “You have to look at the positives. We’ve been playing really good basketball these last two games even though we lost.
“You have to look at the positives. Look at the standings. We are still in the playoffs.”
Hardaway has been a bright spot. He has scored at least 22 points in three of the last four games and had 25 against Milwaukee.
The Nets don’t have any playoff concerns; they are the only team in the Eastern Conference to be eliminated from the postseason. Brooklyn has played better of late, going 7-8 in March. The Nets had their modest two-game winning streak broken in a 129-108 loss at Washington on Friday.
But Brooklyn has been terrible away from home, posting a league-worst 5-30 road record. The Nets have lost their last five games in Atlanta and have lost both previous games to the Hawks this season.
Brooklyn has been helped by the return of point guard Jeremy Lin, who missed a game because of a sprained right ankle. Lin missed 26 games earlier this season. He has scored 13 and 14 points in the two games since his return, right at his season average of 13.7.
“More than his talent, more than his experience, I just think there is confidence,” Brooklyn coach Kenny Atkinson said. “He commands the respect of everybody — the coaches, the players.”
The Nets are encouraged by the development of rookie forward Caris LeVert. He has started the last 15 games and is averaging 9.8 points and shooting 53 percent over that stretch.
Brooklyn returns home on Tuesday to host Philadelphia. Atlanta will host Phoenix on Tuesday.