Top Stories

Hawks' Trae Young expects to play through eye injury

Atlanta's star guard suffered an injury to his left eye in the team's 112-99 comeback win Wednesday in New York.

Trae Young sported protective goggles vs. the Knicks after suffering an eye injury in Wednesday’s game.

Atlanta Hawks guard Trae Young briefly left Wednesday’s 112-99 comeback road win against the New York Knicks because of a left eye injury, but said he doesn’t think the injury will cause him to miss any time.

“I think I’ll be able to play through it,” Young told ESPN’s Tim Bontemps. “It’s more just letting the swelling go down. But I’ll be able to play through it. Our next game is Saturday, so thankfully we get a couple days for it to kind of get better. I’ll probably have to wear goggles or glasses for some games, but it’ll be all right.”

Young scored 17 points despite missing time in the second half because of the eye issue. He returned wearing protective glasses with 7:04 left in the game.

Game recap: Hawks 112, Knicks 99

“I’m feeling all right. I can’t see out of one eye too well,” Young said after the game. “When I came back I didn’t really want to shoot at all, I just wanted to be a presence out there for my teammates.”

The Hawks’ medical staff gave Young eye drops after the game to prevent an infection as Young has a scratched eye.

The Knicks took their largest lead at 51-28 on RJ Barrett’s 3-pointer with 6:59 left in the second quarter. The Hawks used a 29-12 surge to pull within 63-57. Young, who started the game shooting 2 of 12, hit his next four shots and scored 10 points during that Atlanta run.

“I was missing layups and some floaters that really should have gone in,” Young said. “I don’t care about my stats. I’m trying to win the game. I don’t get caught up in how many shots I missed. I just try to make the right play every time.”

New York led 65-57 at halftime.

Young’s layup put Atlanta ahead, but he was taken to the locker room after being hit in the face by Julius Randle with 8:40 left in the third quarter. His replacement, Aaron Holiday, immediately hit a 3-pointer and capped the Hawks’ 12-0 run to start the second half.

Young’s backcourt partner, Dejounte Murray, stepped up in the win against the Knicks, finishing with a career-best 36 points (as well as nine assists and six steals) to help Atlanta climb from a 23-point deficit.

The Knicks tied the game at 71, but the Hawks scored the next 12 points and led the rest of the way. Atlanta outscored New York 32-10 in the third — the Knicks had as many turnovers as points — and led 89-75. The lead grew to 107-88 on Murray’s long jumper with 4:54 remaining.

“I though DJ was unbelievable,” Hawks coach Nate McMillan said. “He knew that he had to step it up with Trae going out. He found a rhythm and we basically rode him in the third and fourth quarters.”

Overall this season, Young is averaging 27.5 points, 3.6 rebounds and 9.4 assists per game while shooting 38.5% overall and 31.7% on 3-pointers — both of which are career lows. He is a two-time All-Star and was a member of All-NBA third team last season.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.