Paul Pierce may have been fired as an ESPN pundit, but the Celtics legend hasn’t stopped giving basketball takes yet.
The Atlanta Hawks took the Philadelphia 76ers by storm in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals. They came out of the gates with a vengeance and drained tough shot after tough shot in the first half.
As a result, the Hawks went into the locker room holding a commanding 20-point lead. Much of this could be attributed to the influence of Trae Young, who was irresistible on the night.
Paul Pierce couldn’t hold his excitement down about the Hawks’ prospects this postseason. They’ve been an amazing, coherent unit in their past 4 games on both ends of the floor. Pierce thinks he’s seen enough to coronate them as Conference Finalists, half a game in.
Brooklyn vs Atlanta eastern conference finals done deal
— Paul Pierce (@paulpierce34) June 6, 2021
Is Paul Pierce right? How far can Trae Young take the Hawks?
Pierce may have foreseen a second-half comeback for the Sixers, but he clearly didn’t bargain for them making a real series of it. The Hawks clearly have a much, much deeper and talented roster than most people gave them credit for. The Sixers are still better.
Joel Embiid was his dominant self on offense all game long. If he’s playing defense more in the vain of the second half than the first, the Sixers have reasonable hopes of stifling the Hawks’ offense. They did contain them to less than 50 points through the course of the 2nd half.
The stifling defense played by the Sixers in the final 5 minutes of the game proves that they have a defensive lineup that can consistently stifle Trae in crunch time. It remains to be seen how the series pans out with all adjustments made after Game 1.
— Mina Kimes (@minakimes) June 6, 2021