Trae Young came through big again for the Hawks in their 114-111 win over the Indiana Pacers. Atlanta’s star point guard dropped 33 points to go along with 10 assists, passing Larry Bird for the most 30-point and 10-assist games of all time — pretty incredible for a 23-year-old. The Hawks have now won eight of their last nine games and are beginning to look more and more like the team that exploded onto the scene last season, making a run to the Eastern Conference Finals after Lloyd Pierce was fired.
Speaking of Lloyd Pierce, he is now an assistant coach under Rick Carlisle in Indiana, so last night was his first opportunity to face his former team, and according to Hawks reporter Chris Kirschner of The Athletic, there was no love lost.
For those who were curious, there were no postgame hugs/handshakes between the Hawks and former Hawks coach Lloyd Pierce
— Chris Kirschner (@ChrisKirschner) December 2, 2021
This shouldn’t come as much of a surprise. Several reports suggested Pierce attempted to make an example of Cam Reddish during practices, which did nothing but harm his development. On top of that, many people believe, including me, that he is the primary reason Trae Young hasn’t received any consideration for Team USA, despite being one of the best point guards to walk this planet.
I’m sure there’s much more that we don’t know, but I’m glad to see the Hawks wear their emotions on their sleeves. There’s no reason to play nice with a coach that was clearly holding the team back in more ways than one. Perhaps Pierce’s tough love tactics will work elsewhere, but they were not having a positive impact in Atlanta, which is why Travis Schlenk was wise to move on from him when he did in the middle of last season.