The Atlanta Hawks went into Game 6 wasting no time, and jumped all over the Boston Celtics, running away with a 104-92 win.
Al Horford got a quick offensive foul early in the game, which appeared to be a bad sign for the Atlanta Hawks, but they would recover nicely. Jonas Jerebko came out hot for the Celtics, scoring a quick five points. The Hawks had a scare early, as Jeff Teague appeared injured after a bad pass. Schröder came in for Teague, who would end up coming back in the game shortly.
The Hawks looked sloppy early, but the Celtics didn’t capitalize on turnovers by Atlanta. With this, the Hawks were able to capture their first lead at 11-9 on a Mike Scott basket, and they looked pretty good from there. Tim Hardaway Jr. came in late in the first quarter, and quickly put up five points for the Hawks. At the end of the first quarter, the Hawks led 20-17.
The second quarter looked just as good, if not better for the Hawks. They opened up the quarter on a 14-4 run across the first half of the second quarter, giving them a 34-21 lead. The crowd at TD Garden was quiet for the most part up until a Jae Crowder dunk brought the crowd off its feet, and within nine points. Kent Bazemore quickly brought the crowd down, with a dunk of his own. The Celtics showed a bit of a charge in the second quarter, but the Hawks were able to keep them at a distance, and take a 41-33 lead into the locker room.
Despite concerns about Jeff Teague, he got off to a good start in the third quarter, knocking down a floater within the first minute of play. A 14-3 run would put the Hawks up 17, and had them looking good. They looked to be in even better shape after Jae Crowder picked up his fifth foul with 8:13 left in the quarter.
Frustration set in for Isaiah Thomas, who picked up a technical foul, and the game certainly appeared to be slipping away for the Celtics, who fell down 65-45. A quick five points from the guys in green and white cut it to 15 and had the home crowd on their feet, forcing the Hawks to call a timeout. The Hawks came out of the timeout strong, and finished up the quarter with an 80-59 lead. Al Horford, quiet in Game 5, had 11 points in the third quarter alone.
The fourth quarter was much of the same for the Hawks. They started off on a 12-2 run, forcing a Brad Stevens timeout with an 87-61 lead. The air was totally out of the TD Garden, and victory seemed like a given. The Celtics made a 17-5 push, and had gotten the lead down to 94-78 with just over five minutes remaining in the game.
Boston was able to trim even closer after an Isaiah Thomas three-point play, making it a 95-83 game with just over three minutes remaining. The crowd at the TD Garden was alive yet again, but the Celtics took a hit after Jae Crowder fouled out with three minutes to play.
The Celtics had cut it to 10 with under two minutes to go, but Kent Bazemore hit Paul Millsap with a huge assist, with Millsap drawing the foul. Millsap knocked down the free throw, making it a 99-86 game with 1:44 remaining. That would be all the Hawks needed to secure the victory, as they came out on top by a final score of 104-92.
The Hawks will now face LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers in the Eastern Conference Semifinals, with Game 1 coming Monday, May 7 at 7 p.m. on TNT.