Atlanta (34-19) at Golden State (15-39)

Partly Cloudy Currently: Oakland, CA
Temp: 69° F
  • Game info: 8:00 pm EST Sun Feb 21, 2010
  • TV: ESPN, CSBA
Preview | Box Score | Recap

Sluggish offensive play has been a major problem for the Atlanta Hawks of late. A meeting with the lowly Golden State Warriors should help.

The Hawks try to rebound from one of their worst offensive showings of the season when they visit the last-place Warriors on Sunday night.

Atlanta (34-19) is fourth in the Eastern Conference, but has lost two of three and shot 38.5 percent from the floor in the defeats. The Hawks have also struggled from 3-point range, going 7 for 40 over the last three games, although they are fourth in the conference at 36.6 percent from beyond the arc.

Atlanta is tied with Orlando for fourth in the East in field-goal percentage at 47.2.

The club’s shooting woes were evident Friday as the Hawks made 39.5 percent from the floor - 3 of 14 from 3-point range - en route to an 88-80 loss at Phoenix. Atlanta managed 30 second-half points and got none in the fourth quarter from Josh Smith(notes), who led the team with 21.

“I thought our offense hurt us,” coach Mike Woodson said. “It really put us behind. We ended up with 12 assists and we missed a lot of good shots and a lot of our shots were hurried shots.

“When our offense wasn’t working in the fourth, it seems like we gave up defensively as well. That’s not a sign of a good team. We’re better than that.”

The Hawks may have an ideal chance to end their shooting funk against the Warriors (15-39), who give up a league-high 110.8 points per game while allowing opponents to shoot 48.0 percent, ranking ahead of only New Jersey at 48.2.

Golden State, last in the Pacific Division, has dropped 11 of 13. The Warriors lost 100-89 to Utah on Friday after shooting 37.2 percent.

“We just couldn’t make any shots and the ball didn’t fall our way,” said guard C.J. Watson(notes), who had 22 points against the Jazz after scoring a career-high 40 in a 130-98 win over Sacramento on Wednesday.

The Warriors need a better performance from Monta Ellis(notes), who returned to the lineup Friday and shot 2 of 14 before finishing with six points and six assists. The guard had missed the previous three games with a mild left knee sprain.

“I don’t know if I expected more than that, but it’s understandable,” coach Don Nelson said. “Anyone coming back from an injury is not going to be sharp. Whatever it takes, we’ll just have to deal with it.”

Ellis leads the Warriors with career-high averages of 25.8 points and 5.4 assists. A back injury forced him to miss the season series with Atlanta in 2008-09, with the teams splitting the two meetings and the home team winning each time.

The Warriors won 119-114 on Jan. 16 behind Jamal Crawford’s(notes) 29 points. The guard is now with the Hawks and averaging 17.6 points. He has struggled of late, however, shooting 36.8 percent and totaling 23 points over the last two games.

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Sunday, Feb 21