Hawks vs Raptors Final Score: Hawks Beat Raps 107-88

USA TODAY Sports

After the Raptors led for most of the first half, the Hawks turned it up in the second, and the Raptors, well, they turned it off. Atlanta outscored the Raptors 63-34 in the second half, securing their 40th win of the season, and a spot in the playoffs in April.

On Friday, the HQ's newest writer, Sean O'Mara (welcome!), penned a rapid recap with a new format, in which he outlined the good and the bad from the night's game. I liked the idea, so this recap will follow a similar format.

The Good

  • Toronto seems to finally understand the concept of tanking. Stick around for three quarters, give the young guns big minutes, and then literally do not show up in the fourth quarter. They followed the script tonight, and it worked perfectly.
  • The Raptors lost
  • They played with incredible energy in the first half, and held a 10 point lead at halftime
  • Unlike his teammates, JV's energy continued in the second half, and his emphatic chest pumps might have been the only thing keeping people in the stadium, and me from watching the Heat-Bulls game
  • The other rook, Terrence Ross, also played well, proving once again that he's a good dunker, but needs to work on, you know, EVERYTHING ELSE
  • Andrew Wiggins' mixtape was recently released, and the video confirms that if he ends up in a Raptors uniform, the ACC will be packed night after night to see the young star play. One can only dream...
  • The Raps gained lottery ground on the 76ers and Bobcats, both of whom were victorious tonight
  • Jack and Matt had some very memorable moments (see below)
The Bad

  • Amir Johnson left the game at the 10:27 mark of the forth quarter and never returned. He sustained a left leg contusion, and according to @RaptorsMR, X-Ray's were negative.
  • The Heat won 27 games in a row. We've won 26 games all season
  • Excluding the rookies, Toronto made a pathetic 38% of their shots, going 22/57 from the floor
  • The guy we traded a 2nd round pick for, Sebastien Telfair, did not play for the third game in a row. That trade deserves much more criticism than it receives
  • Much like JV's chest pump, Aaron Gray's posterization, and Ross' one-hander, Rudy Gay now has a trade mark. The post-miss complaint to the refs, while the rest of the team's running back on defense. This is not a good thing.
  • New Orleans, Cleveland and Minnesota all lost close games, which is very unhelpful to the Raptors lotto hopes
  • The Raptors are a team of chuckers. When they're going in, no one's complaining, but on nights like tonight when the shots aren't falling, it's really tough to win. DeRozan, Lucas III and Anderson, the chucking 'big three', went a combined 11-30 from the floor
  • Kyle Lowry simply could not stop Jeff Teague. Teague made getting to the bucket look easy, and on this night, against Lowry's poor defense, it may have actually been relatively easy
Matt and Jack Classics
  • After Matt declared that six men have coached both the Hawks and Knicks, Jack observantly said "Not at the same time, of course"
  • In a conversation about NBA stats, Jack pointed out that it's easy for kids these days, because they can go on "that google thing". He also mentioned that when he was younger, he would call up a "stat guy", whenever he was in need of a stat
Up Next

The Raptors next game is Friday in the Palace, as they take on Jose Calderon and the Pistons.

For the opponent's winning side of things, head over to the Hawks SBNation blog Peachtree Hoops.

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