NBA roundup: Young and Capela lead Hawks to win, Butler brings the Heat
Atlanta, Georgia - The NBA's trusty Atlanta Hawks duo of Trae Young and Clint Capela controlled the show in a 104-95 home win against the Philadelphia 76ers on Thursday.
It was not Young's most efficient scoring performance, as he finished with an equal game-high 26 points on seven-of-21 shooting, hitting all 10 of his free throws.
However, Young's pick-and-roll combination with Capela proved nearly unstoppable, with the Swiss center converting seven-of-10 field goals for 18 points and a game-high 20 rebounds.
Three of his seven field goals were alley-oop dunks off Young assists, and one was an offensive rebound off a Young miss as Capela's defender came over to help.
Of the Hawks' five starters, only Young and Capela finished with a positive plus/minus, meaning their most effective lineup was that duo with three bench players.
With James Harden out for at least the next couple of weeks, Joel Embiid was again asked to carry a massive offensive burden, and he struggled against Capela's defense.
While he finished with an efficient 26 points (nine-of-18 shooting) and 12 rebounds, he posted a season-high seven turnovers.
The Hawks are now 8-4, and have won four of their past five games, while the 76ers have lost three of their past four to sit at 5-7.
Around the league
Miami Heat All-Star Jimmy Butler flirted with a triple-double as he starred in a 117-112 overtime win over the Charlotte Hornets.
Playing a season-high 42 minutes as the Heat kept their rotation down to eight players, Butler eclipsed 30 points for the first time this season on his way to 35 on 11-of-19 shooting (13-of-15 free throws). He also added 10 rebounds, eight assists, and two steals in a complete performance.
Five of his Heat teammates reached double figures, led by center Bam Adebayo with 18 points (six-of-15 shooting) and 14 rebounds, to snap their third two-game losing streak of the young season, moving to 5-7.
After starting the season with nine consecutive 30-point performances, Dallas Mavericks superstar Luka Doncic had his second tough outing in a row as his side lost 113-105 to the Washington Wizards.
Doncic shot just nine-of-29 in Wednesday's loss to the Orlando Magic, and followed it on Thursday by shooting eight-of-21 for his 22 points, although he added nine rebounds and six assists.
With both Bradley Beal and Kristaps Porzingis missing for the Wizards through injury, it was Kyle Kuzma stepping up with 36 points (14-of-26 shooting), 11 rebounds, and six assists.
Cover photo: Collage: REUTERS