Atlanta, Ga-When the game started, the Hawks looked lethargic coming out of the gate. The Raptors sprinted out to a 7-0 run out of the blocks, with Atlanta committing two turnovers and the Raptors grabbing three offensive boards in the first 91 seconds of the game.
Toronto had a 12-2 run late in the quarter to take a double-figure lead to the second quarter, but Atlanta wouldn’t go away quietly. The Hawks scored eight straight points to cut the deficit to three, including a pair of treys from Kevin Huerter from downtown.
The Raptors’ winning streak now stands at four games following a 122-117 win over the Atlanta Hawks on Monday at State Farm Arena.
Norman Powell went bonkers in the fourth quarter with 17 points extending the Raptors lead by as many as 21 points.
A strong comeback by the Hawks made it a two-point game, 117-115, with 14.2 seconds remaining before Fred VanVleet sank three free throws to give Toronto some breathing space.
The Raptors are now only a half-game behind the Miami Heat for the second seed in the Eastern Conference, and the teams could have the same record (29-14) by the end of the night.
Trey Young went for 42 points Monday in a loss. He shot 20 times, made 11 of them. He earned every single one of those 20 attempts — no matter the distance, game situation, time left on the shot clock — by also had 15 assists.
Atlanta is at the bottom of the Eastern Conference with a 10-34 record and has started the month of January with a 3-7 mark.
The addition of point guard Jeff Teague provided the Hawks with some much-needed help in the depleted backcourt but has yet translated to success on the court. The team has lost both of its games with Teague in the lineup.
The rest of the half featured the two teams going back and forth, Atlanta took a three-point lead into the break. Young led the way with 15 points and 10 assists prior to halftime, but it was Atlanta’s defensive pressure in the second quarter that was responsible for the turnaround.
Out of the halftime break, the Hawks came out firing out on all cylinders, using a 10-4 run to claim their largest at 70-61.
The rest of the quarter the Hawks struggled and couldn’t buy a bucket. Vince Carter hit a trey and had a blocked shot, leaving the Hawks with an eight-point lead.
Toronto was able to turn the game back to their favor thanks to one guy: Powell. He continues to play well in games down the stretch may be quietly hearing his name in the Sixth Man of the Year conversation, and further proved that Toronto’s depth is tough to match up with when they’re fully healthy and playing together.