Kevin Huerter scored a playoff career-high 27 points, Trae Young added 21 points and 10 assists, and the fifth-seeded Atlanta Hawks stunned the host Philadelphia 76ers, 103-96, in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference semifinals on Sunday, June 20 (Monday, June 21, Manila time).
The Hawks will face the Milwaukee Bucks in the Eastern Conference finals.
Young shot 5-of-23, but made a couple of clutch shots down the stretch.
John Collins had 14 points and 16 rebounds, while Danilo Gallinari had 17 points and Clint Capela 13 for the Hawks, who reached the conference finals for the first time since 2015. The Hawks won three games at Philadelphia in this series.
Joel Embiid led the top-seeded Sixers with 31 points and 11 rebounds yet committed 8 turnovers. Tobias Harris added 24 points and 14 rebounds, Seth Curry had 16 points, and Ben Simmons contributed 13 assists.
The Sixers have not reached the conference finals since 2001.
The Hawks led 48-46 at halftime thanks in large part to Huerter’s 12 points. Young shot just 1-of-12 in the opening half.
Embiid had 15 points but committed 4 turnovers and appeared to tweak his injured right knee shortly before halftime.
The game was tight throughout the third as the Hawks moved out to a 64-63 advantage with 4:45 left after a tough jumper by Huerter. He was fouled as well but missed the free throw.
Matisse Thybulle scored 4 late points in the period, but the Hawks closed the third strong and led 76-71.
Embiid scored the first 5 points of the fourth – a jumper and a three-pointer – to tie the game at 76 with 10:37 to go.
The Hawks missed their first nine shots of the fourth but trailed only 81-77. Gallinari then connected on a trey to close the Hawks within one.
Young drove scored on a runner with 5:11 left to give the Hawks an 86-84 lead.
Embiid responded with a jumper with 4:14 remaining to tie the game at 86.
Young drained a deep 30-foot trey with 2:31 to go and the Hawks led 93-87.
The Sixers went on a 5-0 run to close within one with 1:09 remaining.
Huerter was then fouled on a three-pointer and dropped in all three for a 96-92 lead with 54 seconds left.
A Gallinari steal and dunk put Atlanta up 98-92 with 42 seconds left. – Rappler.com