The Atlanta Hawks have clinched the eighth-seed in the Eastern Conference, thanks to an unreal second half performance by Trae Young against the Cleveland Cavaliers.
The Atlanta Hawks had the ninth-best record in the Eastern Conference, meaning they had to run the gauntlet that was the play-in tournament to clinch the eighth-seed in the NBA Playoffs. After blowing out the Charlotte Hornets on Apr. 13, the Hawks had to defeat the Cleveland Cavaliers on the road on Friday night.
Things looked bleak for the Hawks, but Trae Young went “Ice Trae” in the second half by scoring 32 points to help lead the team to a 107-101 win. Now, Atlanta faces the top-seeded Miami Heat in the first-round.
Young’s performance left the NBA media and even LeBron James in awe.
Trae Young went full Ice Trae vs. Cavs had LeBron, NBA media in awe
Young was ice cold in the first half, as he scored just six points while shooting 3-for-11 from the field. Atlanta trailed 61-51 at halftime, and Young stepped up when it mattered most. In fact, Young scored or assisted on 43-of-56 of Atlanta’s second-half points, which actually outscored the entire Cavaliers team, per ESPN Stats and Info.
As for Cleveland, they have to lament over the fact that they held a 14-point lead over Atlanta, only for them to lose. However, this is a Cavaliers team that led the league in losses when leading by 10-plus points in the regular-season.
Young will look to help lead the Hawks to another lengthy playoff run, and that starts by upsetting the Heat.
Game 1 of the first-round series between Atlanta and Miami takes place on Sunday, Apr. 17 at 1:00 p.m. ET, and will air on TNT.