One possession at time, Atlanta must continue to figure things out.
The win sends Atlanta to its first conference/division final since 1970. How the Wizards decide to start the game could set the oh so crucial tone for its entirety.
If the Atlanta Hawks had a song to go along with their thrilling series win over the Washington Wizards, it would be ‘Survivor’ by Destiny’s Child. He was anticipating that Wall would be able to play Friday night. With 6 seconds remaining on the game clock, point guard Dennis Schroder made a drive towards the basket only to be blocked by John Wall.
Near the very end of Game 5 between the Wizards and the Hawks, it appeared as though Paul Pierce had struck again. The Hawks won 94-91. Al Horford hit only one free throw and the Wizards trailed by only three with 6.4 seconds to play.
With 8.3 seconds left in Game 5 Pierce hit a 3-pointer to put the Wizards up one. It took six games against Washington and one agonizing replay review after another clutch shot by Wizards forward Paul Pierce to get there.
The Hawks had come back to win the swing game in series, largely due to Horford’s 23 points and 11 rebounds but more importantly, his relentlessness on the final play. They improved road teams to 6-0 this postseason in Game 6s.
Germany native Schroder is a second-year guard drafted by the Atlanta Hawks with the 17th overall in June 2013.
Wall, who missed three games after being hurt in the series opener, used his injured hand to poke the ball from Carroll for a steal, then found Beal with an outlet pass for a fastbreak dunk with 4 1/2 minutes left.
In the second half the critical time for the Wizards would come, as it does in all elimination games. Washington led by 11 points midway through the fourth quarter on Wednesday before collapsing as Atlanta rallied for an 82-81 victory to take a 3-2 series lead.
Gortat and Nene are both capable of playing well against elite big men, but for whatever reason, have lapses that eventually catch up to the team. As a team, they finished 5-22 from the field and were lucky that during their 14-0 run Kyle Korver made his first and only three-point shot of the night as he was 1-5 on his attempts, just like teammate DeMarre Carroll. Atlanta went 3-1 against Cleveland in the regular season, winning the last three games... The franchise's only NBA championship came in 1958, when it was based in St. Louis.
"I don't even know if I'm even going to play basketball anymore,” said Pierce, who was 1 for 7 and scored four points Friday.
Atlanta scored the final six points of the first half for a 45-39 lead. Marcin Gortat needs to stay out of foul trouble early so he can be effective down the stretch.
John Wall remembers well the 93-80 loss to top-seeded Indiana last May 15 that ended Washington's season on its home floor.