Tune-In Tidbits: TNT Tuesday, June 8, 2021
Get ready for Tuesday's TNT playoff doubleheader with five key stats to know about each matchup.
Brian Martin, for NBA.com
Game 2: Hawks at 76ers
• Trae Young has two 30-point, 10-assist games in his first six career playoff games — Game 1 vs. New York (32 points, 10 assists) in the first round and Game 1. vs. Philadelphia (35 points, 10 assists) in the conference semifinals. Since he entered the league in 2018-19, Young has 33 career 30-10 games — the only player with more in that span is James Harden (37).
• The Hawks took control of Game 1 with a 17-0 run fueled by their bench over a four-minute stretch spanning the first and second quarters. Atlanta’s bench finished with a 34-23 advantage over Philadelphia’s reserves for the game. Kevin Huerter led all bench players with 15 points, while Danilo Gallinari and Lou Williams added nine and eight points, respectively, for Atlanta.
• Joel Embiid was listed as questionable headed into Game 1 after missing the close-out game of the first round due to a small tear in his meniscus. He not only played in Game 1, but finished with a game-high 39 points in 38 minutes. Embiid scored 21 points on 7-for-12 shooting from the field and 7-for-7 from the free throw line in 8:15 of matchup time with Clint Capela. In 1:53 combined against Onyeka Okongwu and Bogdan Bogdanovic, Embiid scored 13 points on 4-for-5 shooting from both the field and free throw line.
• The Hawks made a franchise playoff record 20 3-pointers in Game 1, with none bigger than Bogdan Bogdanovic’s clutch triple with 41 seconds remaining to push the Hawks’ lead back to six points and quell a furious fourth-quarter rally by the home team. The Hawks doubled-up the Sixers from the 3-point line as Philly shot 10-for-29 from beyond the arc.
• Danny Green drew the assignment of defending Trae Young for a team-high 7:02 (54.8% of Young’s offensive matchup time) in Game 1. In that time, Young had 19 points on 5-9 shooting from the field, 2-4 from three and 7-7 from the free throw line as he drew three shooting fouls. Young added another 11 points on 4-6 shooting in 2:13 against Matisse Thybulle. Kia Defensive Player of the Year finalist Ben Simmons defended Young for 1:28 and held him scoreless with only one field goal attempt.
Game 1: Clippers at Jazz
• This is a matchup of two of the top 3-point shooting teams in the league, but not against one another. During the regular season, Utah led all teams in 3-pointers made (16.7 per game) and ranked fourth in 3-point percentage (38.9%), while the Clippers ranked sixth in 3-pointers made (14.3 per game) and led the NBA in 3-point percentage (41.1%). In three games against the Clippers, the Jazz averaged only 13.3 3-pointers made (their second-lowest mark against any opponent) on 34.5% shooting (seventh-lowest). Meanwhile, the Clippers averaged just 10.7 3-pointers made against Utah (also their second-lowest mark against any opponent) on 36.0% shooting (fourth-lowest). Which team will break through with the 3-point shot in this series?
• A key to both team’s 3-point success during the regular season has been utilizing the corner 3. The Clippers and Jazz both average 4.8 3-pointers made from the corners during the regular season; they were the only two teams to average double-digit attempts from the corners. In terms of accuracy, the Clippers led all teams at 47.1%, while the Jazz ranked 13th at 40.3%. Bojan Bogdanovic finished tied for second in the regular season with 86 corner 3s, while Marcus Morris and Nicolas Batum led the Clippers with 55 each — tied for the 10th most in the league.
• As John Schuhmann notes in the Jazz-Clippers series preview, Kawhi Leonard posted a 67.5% effective field goal percentage in LA’s first round series with Dallas – the second-highest eFG% for a player that averaged 30-plus points in a playoff series in at least the last 55 years. However, Schuhmann also notes that Kawhi’s 38.2% effective field goal percentage against the Jazz over the past two seasons since he joined the Clippers is his lowest against any opponent.
• Donovan Mitchell is coming off a 30-point performance in Utah’s close-out game against Memphis. It was Mitchell’s 11th 30-point game in 27 career playoff games. Mitchell’s 743 points through his first 27 playoff games is tied with Kevin Durant for the 12th-most in NBA history. The only active players to average more than Mitchell’s 27.5 ppg through 27 career playoff games is LeBron James (27.6) and Anthony Davis (29.7).
• The Clippers have a quick turnaround from an emotional Game 7 win over Dallas on Sunday to Game 1 against Utah on Tuesday. Meanwhile, the Jazz have not played in a week as they closed out the Grizzlies in five games on June 2. LA went 3-0 against Dallas on one day of rest in the first round and 27-19 during the regular season. Utah lost its only playoff game with more than five days rest (Game 1 vs. Memphis without Donovan Mitchell) and went 2-0 when well rested during the regular season.