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4:30 PM PT5:30 PM MT6:30 PM CT7:30 PM ET0:30 GMT8:30 5:30 PM MST7:30 PM EST4:30 UAE (+1)01:3019:30 ET6:30 PM CT22:30 , January 19, 2022
State Farm Arena, Atlanta, Georgia  Attendance: 15,199

Wolves, fresh off win at New York, take aim at Hawks

According to STATS
According to STATS

Minnesota Timberwolves at Atlanta Hawks

  1. Atlanta defeated Minnesota in their only meeting this season, 121-110, in Minneapolis on December 6. The Hawks have won four straight games against the T-Wolves, outscoring them by an average of 11.7 points per game.
  2. In January, the T-Wolves lead the NBA in scoring (118.1) and rank second in assists per game (28.3). Minnesota has only finished in the top five in both categories for a full calendar month once in the past seven seasons, May 2021 (tied-fifth, 122.1 and third, 28.9).
  3. Anthony Edwards recorded at least 20 points (21) for the 23rd time this season in Minnesota's 112-110 win over New York on Tuesday. Edwards leads all second-year players for 20-point games in 2021-22 (next closest is Desmond Bane with 19 such games).
  4. The Hawks defeated Milwaukee, 121-114, on Monday, forcing 13 turnovers. Atlanta ranks last in the NBA at forcing turnovers this season, with its opponents averaging 11.9 turnovers per game.
  5. Trae Young put up 30 points, 11 assists and made all 14 of his free throws in Atlanta's win over Milwaukee. Over the past two seasons, Trae Young has seven games of at least 30 points, 10 assists and 10 free throws made in a game, only James Harden has more such games (eight).
  6. Atlanta snapped its 10-game home losing streak on Monday, hitting 15 threes on 41.7 percent shooting. Atlanta ranks third this season in three-point percentage, averaging 37.4 percent. The Hawks have not finished top five in three-point percentage since the 2014-15 season (second, 38.0 percent).

The Atlanta Hawks will try to build on the momentum gained from breaking their five-game losing streak when they host the Minnesota Timberwolves on Wednesday.

The Hawks got a much-needed win on Monday when they beat the defending champion Milwaukee Bucks 121-114 for the second time this season. The result ended a 10-game homecourt losing streak -- one shy of matching the franchise record. The Hawks outscored the Bucks 38-26 in the fourth quarter and used a 14-2 stretch to stun Milwaukee.

Minnesota, meanwhile, is on a roll. The Timberwolves have won two straight after a 112-110 road victory over the New York Knicks on Tuesday, and they have won six of their past eight to creep to within one game of avoiding the play-in round of the playoffs.

This is the second and final match between the two teams this season. The Hawks prevailed 121-110 on Dec. 6 in Minneapolis for their fourth straight head-to-head victory. Minnesota's last win in the series came at Atlanta on Nov. 22, 2019.

Hawks coach Nate McMillan hopes the victory over the Bucks will get his team going in the right direction.

"It first starts with believing," McMillan said. "You've got to believe that you can win a game, and I think we've had some doubt with all the guys being out for the last two months. You've got to believe that you have a chance to win and then you've got to go out there and perform. I thought our guys did that. They were together. They were connected."

Atlanta has benefited from the defense of De'Andre Hunter and the development of Onyeka Okongwu, who has taken most of the minutes at center as an ankle injury has kept Clint Capela out for five consecutive games.

Hunter, who missed 26 games with a right wrist injury, has scored 20 points twice in the four games since his return. Okongwu missed the first 28 games of the season due to offseason shoulder surgery and missed four other games due to COVID-19 protocol. Since Capela has been injured, Okongwu is averaging 8.8 points, 7.2 rebounds and 1.6 blocks in 27.6 minutes.

"He plays bigger than he looks," Hunter said of Okongwu. "I make fun of him all the time, saying he's only 6-5, but he plays really hard. He's a lot stronger than he looks and he's really athletic."

Okongwu will have his hands full with Minnesota's Karl-Anthony Towns, who converted a three-point play with 29.3 seconds remaining to lead his team past the Knicks.

"That was the biggest moment I've had at Madison Square Garden," said Towns, who scored 20 against New York. "Great crowd, great atmosphere, great energy and I got to silence everybody, so that made it even better."

Towns, who is averaging 24.5 points and 9.2 rebounds this season, had 31 points and 16 rebounds in the first meeting with Atlanta this season.

Minnesota's Jaylen Nowell, who had been hobbled by an ankle injury, produced 14 points, six rebounds and three assists in 23 minutes off the bench Tuesday.

Atlanta will again be without Capela, as well as Bogdan Bogdanovic (right knee soreness). Minnesota's Jordan McLaughlin is out due to health and safety protocol.

--Field Level Media

Updated January 19, 2022

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