The Atlanta Hawks can finish the regular season on a high note as they head home on Wednesday night with back-to-back wins ahead of their matchup with the flailing Washington Wizards
Atlanta (40-39) moved above .500 on Tuesday with a 123-105 rout of Chicago despite playing without Trae Young.
Young, the Hawks' leader in scoring at 26.2 points per game and in assists with 9.9, sat out Tuesday with a non-COVID illness. Bogdan Bogdanovic helped fill the void with 26 points, including 5-of-10 shooting from 3-point range
Saddiq Bey added 18 points, and Dejounte Murray finished with 17 points and nine assists for Atlanta, which is the current No. 8 seed has a spot in the play-in tournament.
"Hopefully, we're back together and play the same way next game. Back-to-back is going to be tough. We need everyone," Bogdanovic told Bally Sports Atlanta following the victory. "But I'm happy and proud the way other guys stepped up tonight with [De'Andre Hunter, who was sidelined with a knee injury] and Trae."
Tuesday's win came after a 132-130 overtime thriller on Sunday against Dallas in which Murray scored 25 points and Young went for 24 in the Hawks' win
Washington's visit will kick off the final three-game stretch of the regular season for Atlanta, which sits two games behind Miami for the No. 7 seed. The Hawks are three games behind No. 6 Brooklyn, which occupies the Eastern Conference's final guaranteed playoff spot
Atlanta will seek its third consecutive win overall and its third straight win over the Wizards. The Hawks claimed back-to-back wins in Washington on March 8 and 10 -- 122-120 and 114-107, respectively
Young set the pace with 28 points in both contests.
The back-to-back losses to the Hawks contributed to an ongoing slide for the Wizards (34-45), who have lost four of their past five games, including a 140-128 defeat at home to Eastern Conference-leading Milwaukee on Tuesday
Rookie Johnny Davis had 20 points for Washington, breaking the career high he set just a game prior with 16 points in a loss Sunday to New York.
Two of Davis' points came on a spectacular dunk over Bucks guard Jrue Holiday. Davis also grabbed five rebounds and blocked two shots, becoming the first Wizards rookie with 20 points, five rebounds and two blocks in a game since John Wall in 2011
"He's been really good with the game-plan discipline and trying to impose his will a little bit physically, which I really like," Washington coach Wes Unseld Jr. said of Davis in his post-game press conference.
Davis was part of a new-look starting five for Washington, with Kristaps Porzingis missing his third consecutive game, Bradley Beal sidelined for a seventh in a row, and Kyle Kuzma out for an eighth.
Corey Kispert has capitalized with Washington's top scorers for the season all out of action, averaging more than 20 points per game in the Wizards' last six games. He put together consecutive outings of 27 points last Friday against Orlando and 29 on Sunday against New York but finished with just 12 on Tuesday
--Field Level Media