Hawks beat Rockets 130-114 but stay in 9th spot for play-in

Apr 10, 2022, 3:22 AM | Updated: 4:35 pm
Atlanta Hawks guard Trae Young (11) puts up a shot between Houston Rockets forwards Usman Garuba (1...

Atlanta Hawks guard Trae Young (11) puts up a shot between Houston Rockets forwards Usman Garuba (16) and David Nwaba (2) during the first half of an NBA basketball game, Sunday, April 10, 2022, in Houston. (AP Photo/Michael Wyke)

(AP Photo/Michael Wyke)

HOUSTON (AP) — Atlanta coach Nate McMillan is certainly glad his team’s season didn’t end Sunday with the regular-season finale.

But next year he hopes the Hawks aren’t clawing for a spot in the play-in tournament during the last few days of the season.

Trae Young had 28 points and 11 assists as the Hawks beat the Houston Rockets 130-114 — a victory that didn’t improve their postseason position.

The Hawks finished ninth in the Eastern Conference and will host the 10-seeded Charlotte Hornets on Wednesday night in the play-in tournament.

“This feeling of what we are going through right now is not the feeling I expect next season. … Next year we don’t want to experience this,” McMillan said. “Next year the mindset — I want it to be different.”

Atlanta entered the day in ninth place and had already clinched a spot in the play-in tournament but played its starters against the lowly Rockets with a chance to improve its spot in the standings with a win and a loss by Cleveland. But the Cavaliers handily beat a Milwaukee team resting its starters to secure the eighth seed and leave the Hawks at No. 9.

Jalen Green, the second overall pick in the draft, had a season-high 41 points for the Rockets, who lost their seventh straight game to finish 20-62, giving them the NBA’s worst record for a second straight season.

Green was happy to finish with a big game after managing just eight points on 3-of-10 shooting in Houston’s last game.

“It meant a lot just to end the year strong,” he said.

Houston cut the lead to seven on two free throws by Green with about nine minutes to go. But Atlanta scored the next 16 points, fueled by four 3-pointers, to make it 120-97 midway through the fourth quarter.

Bogdan Bogdanovic had two 3s in that stretch and Danilo Gallinari and De’Andre Hunter had one each to help the Hawks pull away.

McMillan was proud of the way his team responded when Houston made it close in the fourth quarter.

“We just have to finish games,” he said. “It wasn’t so much what I needed to say, it had already been said and we needed to close that quarter and close that game.”

Gallinari added 26 points with six 3-pointers and Hunter had 22 points for the Hawks, who finished the regular season 43-39.

Young made four 3s to give him 233 this season, passing Mookie Blaylock (231 in 1995-96) for most in franchise history.

The Hawks were up by 14 after a 3-pointer by Young with about seven minutes left in the third quarter. Houston then used a 12-4 run to cut the lead to 88-82 with four minutes left in the third. Green had four points in that span and Garrison Mathews capped the run with a 3-pointer.

Clint Capela got Atlanta going after that, scoring the first four points of a 7-0 spurt that extended the lead to 95-82.

Houston got within eight on a basket by Kenyon Martin Jr. late in the third, but Gallinari hit a 3-pointer for the Hawks to leave them up 102-91 entering the fourth.


McMillan on his team’s chances entering the play-in game: “We get a home game. It doesn’t guarantee anything, but we’ve been pretty good at home.”


Rockets: Christian Wood sat out for a seventh consecutive game with a hamstring injury. … Kevin Porter Jr. had 26 points. … Mathews scored 14.

Hawks: Lou Williams missed a third straight game with lower back discomfort. … Capela had 18 points and 13 rebounds. … Atlanta shot 21 of 38 from 3-point range.


More AP NBA: https://apnews.com/hub/nba and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


Canada's Nirra Fields, left, runs past Puerto Rico's Trinity San Antonio during their quarterfinal ...
Associated Press

Canada into women’s World Cup semis for 1st time since 1986

SYDNEY (AP) — No one on Canada’s roster was alive the last team the team won a medal at the women’s World Cup. Now the Canadians are a win away from winning one for the first time since 1986, when they captured the bronze. Kia Nurse scored 17 points to lead a balanced Canada team […]
1 day ago
FILE - Golden State Warriors forward Andre Iguodala handles the ball during the second half of an N...
Associated Press

Warriors-Wizards games in Japan to woo NBA fans, sponsors

TOKYO (AP) — Japanese basketball fans will get to see NBA stars up close when the reigning league-champion Golden State Warriors take on the Washington Wizards in two preseason games. Not surprisingly, Stephen Curry and Japanese-born Rui Hachimura will be the star attractions for each team. And as clearly as the logo of Japanese online […]
1 day ago
New York Yankees' Aaron Judge celebrates his 61st home run of the season, a two-run shot against th...
Associated Press

Maris Jr: Bonds, McGwire illegitimate, Judge to be HR king

TORONTO (AP) — Roger Maris Jr. considers the home run feats of Barry Bonds, Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa to be illegitimate and says Aaron Judge should be recognized as the holder of the big league season standard if the New York Yankees slugger hits No. 62. “He should be revered for being the actual […]
1 day ago
San Diego Padres' Manny Machado, right, jokes with Los Angeles Dodgers second baseman Gavin Lux (9)...
Associated Press

Freeman has RBI single in 10th, gives Dodgers 107th win

SAN DIEGO (AP) — Freddie Freeman helped the Atlanta Braves win the World Series last year and on Wednesday night he helped the Los Angeles Dodgers set the franchise season record with their 107th victory. Freeman singled in Mookie Betts with one out in the 10th inning and the Dodgers beat the San Diego Padres […]
1 day ago
New York Yankees' Aaron Judge hugs his mother, Patty Judge, after the team's baseball game against ...
Associated Press

Fans miss 61 HR ball, Jays bullpen coach gets it to Judge

TORONTO (AP) — When Aaron Judge’s American League record-tying 61st home run dropped into Toronto’s bullpen, coach Matt Buschmann picked it up. “Bad news is I’m down here in Florida battling a hurricane, but the good news is I can announce my retirement,” tweeted Buschmann’s wife, Sara Walsh, a Fox Sports reporter and former ESPN […]
1 day ago
Los Angeles Angels starting pitcher Michael Lorenzen throws to an Oakland Athletics batter during t...
Associated Press

Trout hits 38th homer, Lorenzen sharp as Angels beat A’s 4-1

ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) — Mike Trout hit his 38th home run, Michael Lorenzen went five strong innings and the Los Angeles Angels continued their success against the Oakland Athletics with a 4-1 victory on Wednesday night. Taylor Ward also homered, while Lorenzen (8-6) gave up an unearned run to lower his ERA to 0.45 against […]
1 day ago
Hawks beat Rockets 130-114 but stay in 9th spot for play-in