After starting out the season like gangbusters, Trae Young, and largely by extension the Atlanta Hawks, have gone in the tank, winning just two games since their 3-0 start and dropping six of their last seven. The latest was a 112-106 defeat at the hands of the Portland Trail Blazers on Saturday night.
The Hawks, who were tied with Portland after three quarters, again stunk in the fourth quarter, where they have been a spitting mess the entire season. Through Saturday, the Hawks are scoring just 23.7 points per fourth quarter, which ranks last, as does their paltry 95.3 offensive rating in final frames. They are making 35 percent of their fourth-quarter shots, which ranks last, and 26.1 percent of their 3-pointers, which ranks second to last. All told, the Hawks are sporting a league-worst minus-4.2 fourth-quarter point differential and a league-worst minus-16.4 fourth-quarter net rating.
A major part of this problem has been the dismal play of Young, who has been bumbling his way through the last two weeks. In a loss to the Utah Jazz on Friday, Young scored four points on 1-of-11 shooting. A week before that he had seven points on 2 of 9