Am I the only one who is shocked that this Miami Heat-Atlanta Hawks game actually looks like a basketball game and not some sloppy preseason garbage-fest 36 minutes in? It seems like both teams brought their "A" game and that both coaches are using the same rotations they'd generally use in the regular season. (Well, the regular season against a team like the Golden State Warriors, but still, that's not bad for exhibition basketball.)
Jamaal Crawford hops, skips jumps, misses, but Zaza Pachulia picks up the missed shot and tips it home. After a Miami shot, Crawford follows with a trey to cap a 10-4 run to end the quarter. The Hawks, who trailed by as many as nine in this one, took a four point edge into the fourth. So what's the difference? Hawks coach Larry Drew had a theory for TNT's David Aldridge.
"It's the energy," he said. "I told the guys the onet hing we have to bring every single night is energy. We were down nine and the guys started pushing the basketball and we're back into it."
LeBron James, who ended the quarter with a bucket has played for almost 30 minutes through three quarters and leads all players with 29 points. However, the Heat are -9 when he is on the court in this one.
Atlanta has four players in double-digits, Joe Johnson has 19, Al Horford 12 and Crawford and Josh Smith have 11 each. Marvin Williams leads with eight rebounds.