Game Thread: Hawks on verge of matching last season’s win total

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Another fact that has escaped the notice of most Hawks players is that a win tonight and they match last season’s win total. That would be 38 wins by Jan. 28 – with two and half months and 36 games remaining.

Jeff Teague on the accomplishment: “Man, I didn’t even know that. I promise you, we don’t even think about it. We go one game at a time and ty to play to the best of our abilities. Now that you mention it, it’s pretty cool.”

Paul Millsap with surprised reaction indicated he was likewise unaware: “It’s a great accomplishment. It’s been a great half of the year thus far. We know things can change. We have to make sure we continue to be who we are.”

Also of note:

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Jeff Teague credited the arrival of Kent Bazemore (above) with the increased enthusiasm of the Hawks.

* Teague was asked about the reactions of the bench as an indication of the team-first attitude: “You can thank Kent Bazemore for that. He brought that to us. His energy from the bench, when he gets in the game, he brings a whole different attitude to our team. We needed it. … I’m telling you it’s all Kent Bazemore. He livened up the whole locker room. He brings his energy to the team. Man, it’s contagious.”

Teague said he was unaware of the ‘Bazemoring’ phenomenon that caught the attention of fans when he played for the Warriors and Lakers. Bazemore said he would tell Teague all about it.

* Shelvin Mack remains out with a left hamstring strain and will not play tonight versus the Nets. The reserve guard said he is getting closer to a return. It appeared he took part in at least some of the team’s shootaround Wednesday. He said he would return “sooner rather than latter.”

* The NBA will announce participants for the Rising Stars Challenge tonight. Those rookies and sophomores, on teams from the U.S. versus the World, will be part of next month’s All-Star Weekend. Hawks second-year players Pero Antic and Dennis Schroder have a chance to be named to the team.


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