Al Horford's injured back was still bothering him after he warmed up prior to the Atlanta Hawks' Tuesday night matchup against the Philadelphia 76ers. Out of a modicum of caution, the Hawks elected to give Horford another night off and start Zaza Pachulia.
Unfortunately for the Atlanta, the Hawks have had their hands full with the athletic Sixers. Philadelphia has just simply dominated the first nine minutes of action and has a 25-9 lead over Atlanta.
Atlanta simply can not get anything going.
Philadelphia has connected on 65-percent (11-for-17) of their shots from the field, while the Hawks have made just four field goals in the frame. The 76ers have also soared over the Hawks on the boards, holding a 12-3 edge there and Atlanta has turned the ball over early and often in the first frame -- posting five turnovers in the first nine-plus minutes.
For the few who braved their way down to Philips, this one is just plain ugly.
The only thing the Hawks have going for them is that there is plenty of time left. But in order to do so, they're going to have to find some spark -- any spark -- to get things going on offense. Devoid of that it's going to be a long night at the Highlight Factory.