MIAMI — The Heat might have let their defense downstar All game in Sunday's 115–91 Game 1 victory of their first round series. But the East's No. It knows Young and eighth-seeded Hawks will not be silent.
Heat forward: “He's going score the ball.”Young, “That's just one game. It's that simple. The next game will be the same. Expect him to take more shots and to be more aggressive, so we have to keep that same level of energy. Because he will be better.
Young won the No. 8 spot after scoring 31 points per game in Atlanta's play-in wins. Young, who had scored 31 points in Atlanta's two play-in wins to earn the No. 8, was exhausted on Sunday. He shot 1-for-12 (0-7 from 3) and had fewer turnovers (6 compared to 4). His 8.3% shooting mark was tied for the worst field goal percentage of his career — including regular season and playoffs — according to ESPN Stats & Information research.
Although the Hawks scored the opening three points of the game, it was all Heat after that. Miami led by 32 points at the end of the fourth quarter. Knowing the fast turnaround time from Friday's play in win in Cleveland to Sunday’s 1 p.m. local tipoff at Miami, Hawks coach Nate McMillan pulled Young two minutes, 34 second later in the third period and kept him on his bench for the rest of game.
McMillan stated, “Miami played on another level.” “We need to move to another level. You are focused on every possession and there is another level. In these games, we must execute and value each possession. +
The Heat seemed confident that Young will be a better player in Game 2.
“Listen, he is going to make more than one shot,” he said.who scored 10 points and had nine assists. He's going to get more than four assists. He will explode. We have to remain patient and continue doing what we're doing.”
Miami, which was fourth in the NBA for defensive rating during the regular-season, used switching strategies on Young to neutralize Atlanta's attempts to free him by setting screens against his primary defender. The return ofA perennial Defensive Player Of The Year candidate, he overcame a recent bout with COVID-19 to be able to play for the first-time since April 8.
“Keep him in the front,” explainedWhen asked about Miami's strategy for Young, he scored 21 points on 9-for-15 shooting. “He is always breaking down defenses and causing people to help. If you don't help, it's an easy layup. [or]It's a floating. If you help, he hits the right guy every time [with a pass]. I believe we did a wonderful job of not fouling and moving our feet while staying in front.
According to Second Spectrum, the Heat made 21 switches against Young in Game 1. They allowed 0.8 points per pick. Young averaged 0.96 points per pick during the regular season against every opposing defense that switched against him. This shows Miami's skill in this area.
When asked about his team's departure, Erik Spoelstra, Heat coach, said that “it's all hands on deck.”Young as Young's primary defense, as they did in the regular-season, and rotating the position Sunday. “Whatever is necessary.”
Young admitted to the fatigue caused by the schedule but acknowledged that Miami's defense was a factor in him tying his low-water mark of the second-most 3-pointers that he's attempted in any game without a miss.
Young stated that although you can feel the weight in your legs, Young has to be commended for their efforts. “They came out aggressive, and they came out with lots of energy.”
This is exactly the approach that the Heat expect from Young in a bounce back effort.
Spoelstra said, “You have to be on edge.” Spoelstra stated, “You need to be on the edge. This team is capable of scoring in large numbers. Trae Young is a firecracker. If you let your guard down at any time, he can suddenly hit a couple. That can lead to a lot more. Respect that.
“And our guys have this respect, but even with that respect, even when he's on edge, it's still possible for him to be capable. This is why we will just have to be prepared for Game 2 and somehow erase that memory and keep that edge.
Young, who was the surprise conference finals champion for Atlanta, was named No. 5 seed, when the Hawks beat the eventual champion 1-0.Before losing the series in six games, said that this experience serves as a reminder of how momentum swings.
Young stated, “You need to win four games in order to win a series. You don't win one and lose it all.” We would have reached the Finals last year if that had been the case.