Here are The Game Day’s predictions and bets for the 2021 NBA Playoffs Eastern Conference First Round series between the New York Knicks and Atlanta Hawks in our Knicks vs Hawks preview.
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New York Knicks vs Atlanta Hawks Prediction: 2021 NBA Playoffs Round 1 Bet Tips & Pick
New York Knicks 2020-2021 Season Recap
The New York Knicks are the surprise of the season this year but should they be? Bringing in defensive-minded coach Tom Thibodeau has paid off big time for the Knicks as they went from 21-45 and 12th place in the East last year to 41-31 this season and 4th in the East with home-court advantage.
The Knicks are the definition of team success this season. 7 of their players are averaging in double figures for points per game. The Knicks star has been Julius Randle, who has developed into an all-star beyond great play for New York as he’s averaging 24.1 points per game. R.J. Barrett has had a great year as well, averaging 17.6 points per game. The Knicks starters play a lot of minutes per game, as is typical of a Tom Thibodeau team, so the major concern heading into the playoffs will be the players’ legs. Also, the significant loss of Mitchell Robinson could be costly in the postseason.
Atlanta Hawks 2020-2021 Season Recap
The Hawks are coming into the postseason winning 6 of their last 7 games. With a 20-47 record last year, the Hawks have put together an impressive run this season, finishing 41-31. Atlanta has put talent around Trae Young and built an Eastern Conference contender. Young is averaging 25.3 points per game this season and has veterans around him now, including Danilo Gallinari, Clint Capela, Bogdan Bogdanovic, and Lou Williams.
The Hawks young core has developed this season as well. Cam Reddish, De’Andre Hunter, John Collins, and Kevin Huerter are all averaging over 11 points per game. The Hawks are putting together a solid season and look to continue their momentum into the postseason.
New York Knicks vs Atlanta Hawks Matchup
The Knicks own 3 wins over the Hawks this season. New York is going to look to focus on Trae Young and try to shut him down. Over the final 20 regular-season games, the Knicks have only allowed one guard to score over 30 against them, and that was Devin Booker. The Knicks are going to look to keep these games low scoring and a grind-out style of play. On the other side of the ball, the Hawks are going to look to score in a hurry. Atlanta likes to score and will attempt to push New York to play up and down hurry-up basketball. The team that controls the pace will win the series.
New York Knicks vs Atlanta Hawks Prediction
Atlanta Hawks Win Series 4-3
With the Knicks being down Mitchell Robinson and the Hawks being on a roll to end the season, the Hawks will get their offense going quick in this series. It will be a battle and will go 7 because of how evenly matched these two teams are. Look for the vets on the Hawks to help steer Atlanta into the second round.
New York Knicks vs Atlanta Hawks Bet Pick
Hawks To Win Series (-120)
It’s a tough bet, but Atlanta gets the edge here. High scoring and loaded with veterans and shooters will give Atlanta the edge over a gritty Knicks team.