Prediction, Preview, and Odds
#571 Phoenix Suns -3 vs.
#572 Atlanta Hawks 225
Tuesday, January 14, 2020 at 7:35pm EST
Philips Arena, Atlanta
Written by Chris Kubala

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#571 Phoenix
#572 Atlanta
16-23
8-32
20-18-1
17-23
21-18
20-20
113
107
114
117

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It’s an interconference contest on the hardwood down in Hotlanta between a pair of teams outside their respective playoff pictures. The Phoenix Suns are on the road as they travel to face the Atlanta Hawks Tuesday night. Phoenix comes in off a 100-92 home win over Charlotte Sunday night in their last contest. Atlanta was drubbed 108-86 on the road by Brooklyn Sunday evening in their most recent game. The Suns lead the all-time regular season series by a 73-56 margin, including a 128-112 home win in the first matchup this season on November 14, 2019.

Phoenix Suns Trying to Gain Ground in Western Conference Playoff Picture

Phoenix won their second straight game as they defeated Charlotte at home on Sunday night in their latest contest. The Suns entered third in the Pacific Division, 16 games behind the Lakers in the standings. In the Western Conference playoff picture, Phoenix was 10th in the standings, 1.5 games behind the Grizzlies for the final playoff spot. The Suns trailed by six after the opening quarter but led by one at the half. Charlotte tied the game after three quarters before a late fourth-quarter run by Phoenix locked down the win. The Suns shot an even 50 percent from the floor, including seven of 21 from three-point range, and controlled the glass by a 51-37 margin. Kelly Oubre Jr. led Phoenix with 25 points and 15 rebounds in the contest.

The Suns are 9th in the league in scoring with an average of 113.2 points per game. The Suns are tied for 22nd on the glass by collecting 43.5 boards per game. Phoenix stands 2nd in the league in assists with 27.8 per contest. Phoenix is 24th in the league in scoring defense as they allow 114 points a night. Devin Booker leads the Suns with 25.8 points plus 6.5 assists per game on the year. Kelly Oubre Jr. (18.5 points, 6.4 rebounds), Deandre Ayton (15.4 points, 11.2 rebounds), Aron Baynes (12.2 points, six boards), Ricky Rubio (13.2 points, 4.7 rebounds, 9.3 assists), Dario Saric (9.9 points, 6.4 rebounds) and Frank Kaminsky (11 points, 4.9 rebounds) are each solid scoring options. The Suns are tied for 12th in the league in field goal percentage at 46.2 percent so far. The Suns are 19th in three pointers per game with 11.6 per contest. Phoenix is tied for 21st in three-point percentage as they splash 34.6 percent of their chances from long range. Kaminsky is out indefinitely with a stress fracture in his right kneecap.

Atlanta Hawks Look to Snap Slide at Four

Atlanta was blown out in the opening quarter against the Nets and never got back in the game, suffering their fourth straight loss in the contest. The Hawks are in the basement of the Southeast Division, 19.5 games behind the Heat. In the Eastern Conference playoff picture, Atlanta is in the cellar, 10.5 games behind the Magic for the final playoff spot. The Hawks trailed 37-16 after the opening quarter in Brooklyn and never got closer than 15 the rest of the way. Atlanta shot 33 percent from the field, including 12 of 48 from three-point range, and was destroyed 62-33 on the glass. Cam Reddish led the Hawks with 20 points in the loss.

The Hawks enter this contest 23rd in scoring offense by averaging 107 points per game. Atlanta is tied for 29th in rebounding by collecting 42.4 boards a night while the team stands 20th by dishing out 23 assists per contest. Atlanta is 28th in the league in scoring defense as they allow opponents to score 117.1 points per game this season. Trae Young leads the team with 28.9 points and 8.4 assists per game this season. Jabari Parker contributes 15 points plus six rebounds per contest while John Collins puts up 17 points plus 9.7 rebounds a night. De’Andre Hunter chips in 11.9 points a game but the Hawks need to get more from Evan Turner, Alex Len, Vince Carter, Cam Reddish and Kevin Huerter (11.2 points) on both ends of the floor. Atlanta is 23rd in the league in field goal percentage by hitting 44 percent of their shots from the floor this season. The Hawks are 20th in threes per game as they hit 11.2 per contest and stand 30th in three-point percentage as they hit only 31.6 percent of their attempts from beyond the arc. Parker will miss at least two weeks after a non-surgical procedure on his shoulder on January 7. Young is dealing with a hamstring injury that cost him Sunday’s game. His status for this one is up in the air.

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Atlanta has struggled with four straight losses coming into the game and they are in the basement of the Eastern Conference. The Hawks have their work cut out for them with their porous defense causing all kinds of issues. If Atlanta is minus Young, they really struggle to do much on the offensive end, as we saw in the loss to the Nets. Phoenix is hanging in the Western Conference playoff picture and they come in off back to back victories. The Suns have gotten good production from Booker, Oubre Jr. and Ayton. That trio trumps what the Hawks roll out and gives Phoenix the win here.

 

Prediction: Phoenix Suns -3

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As poor as Atlanta has been defensively this season (29th in scoring defense), they've turned in some semi-decent performances of late. The Hawks held Brooklyn to 108 points in a blowout loss Sunday. Atlanta is 26th in field goal percentage defense (47.3 percent) but Phoenix is right here with them, ranking 25th at 47.3 percent. The Suns aren't that great defensively either as the metrics show but they held Charlotte to 92 points in their last game. Both teams have had their ups and downs this season. If Young doesn't go, the Hawks are more methodical than up-tempo. Both teams have been under machines of late. Look for this one to follow suit as the jumpers simply aren't falling.

Prediction: Under
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Written By Chris Kubala

Christopher Kubala has been crunching stats and following sports for over 30 years. His in-depth analysis and passion for sports have led him to writing books about sports, regularly being featured on sports talk radio and as the go-to person for any obscure trivia. Now he is writing for our team here at Winners @ Whiners. Chris keeps an eye on transactions and statistics like a hawk, especially when it comes to football, both the NFL and college. He is also very knowledgeable in the NHL, the NBA, college basketball and MLB. If you want consistency, then be sure and check out Chris’ content daily.