Game: Atlanta Hawks @ Utah Jazz
Time: 9:00 p.m.
Odds: Hawks +1.5, Jazz -1.5
No one would have guessed the Atlanta Hawks had a losing record and had lost four of their previous five games going into their 132-100 rout of Phoenix on Wednesday. The Hawks made 52 out of 91 field goal attempts and shot over 57 percent from beyond the arc (19-of-33). The Suns could only shoot 40.7 percent from the field overall and only 4-of-28 from 3-point range.
For the Hawks, who evened their record at 26-26, Dejounte Murray scored 21 points, Trae Young scored 20 points and dished out 12 assists, Bogdan Bogdanovic scored 18, and Onyeka Okongwu scored 17. It was a total team effort.
Now, Atlanta is off to Salt Lake City where they will take on the Utah Jazz. Utah is also coming off a solid victory, but one that was more difficult to come by. In Utah’s 131-128 victory over the Toronto Raptors, Lauri Markkanen led the team with 28 points and 13 rebounds, and youngster Walker Kessler contributed 17 points, 14 rebounds, and seven blocks.
Mike Conley added 19 points overall, including two key free throws late in the game. Jordan Clarkson also scored 23 points for Utah. Conley also had eight assists. With 2:13 remaining, his three-point shot gave Utah a 120–113 lead. Collin Sexton (12 points) and Malik Beasley (14 points) each scored in the double digits.
The two teams have played once this season. Back on Nov. 9, the Jazz held a 15-point lead, lost it, and then rallied to win 125-119. Utah outscored Atlanta 40-29 in the fourth quarter to secure the win. Lauri Markkanen had a game-high 32 points, hitting six of the 17 three-pointers made by Utah. The Jazz continue to do just that now. Markkanen scores a ton of points and the Jazz keep hitting a bunch of three-pointers.
Utah ranks fourth in the league in scoring averaging 117.7 points per game. Markkanen is the team’s leading scorer averaging 24.9 points per game. He leads six Jazz players in double figures. The Jazz hit 36.8 percent of their three-point attempts, which ranks 10th in the NBA. Utah ranks fourth in the league in three-pointers made per game (14.6).
Utah has won the last six in a row and seven of the last ten against Atlanta. The Jazz has covered in five straight against the Hawks. Utah is 6-2 ATS in its last eight games of the season. The Jazz has won five of its last seven.
Atlanta is 2-4 SU in its last six games. The Hawks are 7-3 ATS in their last ten games and they have covered the spread in five of their last six road games.
Tonight’s total has risen to 242.5. That’s the highest total these two teams have faced in their last ten meetings. Seven of the last ten in the series have gone Under the total, including five of the last six. The lone game this year went Over with the total set at 231.5. The teams combined for 244 points.
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