Trae Young Drops 36 as Hawks Hold off Lakers with LeBron James Out Injured

Rob Goldberg@@TheRobGoldbergFeatured Columnist IVJanuary 30, 2022

ATLANTA, GA - JANUARY 30: Trae Young #11 of the Atlanta Hawks drives to the basket during the game against the Los Angeles Lakers on January 30, 2022 at State Farm Arena in Atlanta, Georgia.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2022 NBAE (Photo by Scott Cunningham/NBAE via Getty Images)
Scott Cunningham/NBAE via Getty Images

The Los Angeles Lakers suffered their third straight loss without LeBron James as the Atlanta Hawks earned a 129-121 win Sunday.

Trae Young scored 36 points, including 13 in the fourth quarter, to lift the Hawks (24-25) to their seventh consecutive win, including their sixth at home at State Farm Arena. 

The Lakers built a 71-62 lead at halftime in the high-scoring game, controlling the action for a 10-point advantage through three quarters. The margin grew as high as 11 in the fourth before the Hawks stormed back with a 14-2 run to steal the lead.

Atlanta kept making shots in the fourth quarter, with Young hitting an important one from deep in the final minute:

Atlanta Hawks @ATLHawks

FROM DEEP 🥶🥶🥶 <a href="https://t.co/BlWa4v590s">pic.twitter.com/BlWa4v590s</a>

It was part of an 8-0 finish to the game for Atlanta, and Los Angeles simply couldn't keep up in the loss.

Anthony Davis scored 27 in his return to the lineup while Malik Monk set season highs with 33 points and 10 rebounds. The Lakers (24-27) still struggled overall as James remains out with a knee injury. The team is now 5-10 this season with LeBron unavailable.

Notable Performances

Trae Young, PG, ATL: 36 points, 12 assists, 5 rebounds

John Collins, PF, ATL: 20 points, 11 rebounds

Clint Capela, C, ATL: 15 points, 9 rebounds

Anthony Davis, PF, LAL: 27 points, 5 rebounds, 2 steals

Russell Westbrook, PG, LAL: 20 points, 12 assists, 7 rebounds

Malik Monk, SG, LAL: 33 points, 10 rebounds, 5 assists

Trae Young Takeover Keys Hawks Win

Though Trae Young came in questionable due to a hip injury, he remained a star offensively.

The passing was especially impressive from start to finish as the guard found teammates all over the floor:


7 dimes for Trae after this long-distance dish 🎯<a href="https://twitter.com/ATLHawks?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@ATLHawks</a> and Lakers on NBA League Pass ⤵<a href="https://t.co/L8Rrlv9ZoR">https://t.co/L8Rrlv9ZoR</a> <a href="https://t.co/Ex6HC4BHu8">pic.twitter.com/Ex6HC4BHu8</a>

Bally Sports: Hawks @HawksOnBally

Oh, that's nice.<a href="https://twitter.com/TheTraeYoung?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@TheTraeYoung</a> | <a href="https://twitter.com/KevinHuerter?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@KevinHuerter</a> <a href="https://t.co/hXwQ9ALnrm">pic.twitter.com/hXwQ9ALnrm</a>

He also called his own number when needed.

Atlanta Hawks @ATLHawks

Step-back too cold <a href="https://t.co/OuvfegTF0E">pic.twitter.com/OuvfegTF0E</a>

Atlanta Hawks @ATLHawks

That's our All-Star ❄️ <a href="https://t.co/FaJTHT9c7B">pic.twitter.com/FaJTHT9c7B</a>

Bally Sports: Hawks @HawksOnBally

Some assists are just better than others.<a href="https://twitter.com/LeaderOfHorde?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@LeaderofHorde</a> | <a href="https://twitter.com/TheTraeYoung?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@TheTraeYoung</a> <a href="https://t.co/d94dzwRA0V">pic.twitter.com/d94dzwRA0V</a>

The clutch shooting in the fourth quarter especially helped the Hawks pull in front before closing out the win. 

It was a nice turnaround after it seemed like his frustrations were going to get the best of him early in the game. 


Trae was about to take the ball and leave 😂 <a href="https://t.co/ldiOeXfshR">pic.twitter.com/ldiOeXfshR</a>

Bleacher Report @BleacherReport

Foul or no foul? <a href="https://t.co/MauLEEeksF">pic.twitter.com/MauLEEeksF</a>

The Lakers took momentum late in the second quarter, ending the half with a 17-6 run.

Young bounced back with 20 points after halftime to keep the Hawks rolling. 

John Collins also showed his upside with his second-straight 20-point game, including 12 in the first quarter to give Atlanta an early lead.

Atlanta Hawks @ATLHawks

JC gettin' things started <a href="https://t.co/4Nf1a7RYoN">pic.twitter.com/4Nf1a7RYoN</a>

Chris Kirschner @ChrisKirschner

John Collins is getting whatever he wants in the paint to start this game.

Whether he's being used as a trade chip or staying with Atlanta, the team needs Collins to play to his ability.

Malik Monk Heroics Not Enough for Lakers

Even with Anthony Davis back after missing Friday's game with a wrist injury, the Lakers remain shorthanded. LeBron James was diagnosed with "general swelling" in his knee that will keep him out until he improves, head coach Frank Vogel said Sunday.

It requires other players to step up, and Malik Monk showed he could be a key piece of the puzzle going forward with a big game Sunday.

The guard filled up the stat sheet with his best game as a Laker, producing some impressive plays along the way:


The move from Malik Monk or the dime? 🤔<a href="https://twitter.com/Lakers?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@Lakers</a> and Hawks in Q1 on NBA League Pass ⤵<a href="https://t.co/L8Rrlv9ZoR">https://t.co/L8Rrlv9ZoR</a> <a href="https://t.co/eYccWadtYe">pic.twitter.com/eYccWadtYe</a>


Malik Monk beats the halftime buzzer to complete a 19-PT first half 🔥<a href="https://twitter.com/Lakers?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@Lakers</a> lead at the break on NBA League Pass: <a href="https://t.co/L8Rrlv9ZoR">https://t.co/L8Rrlv9ZoR</a> <a href="https://t.co/OGKY3zEQ0c">pic.twitter.com/OGKY3zEQ0c</a>


30 for Malik Monk and the Lakers stay close 👀<br><br>Watch the end of that game on YouTube for FREE: <a href="https://t.co/GcDy5V18D7">https://t.co/GcDy5V18D7</a> <a href="https://t.co/EmfR1KMvUJ">pic.twitter.com/EmfR1KMvUJ</a>

Harrison Faigen @hmfaigen

Malik Monk absolutely, unironically circled this as a "me vs. Trae" matchup and I love it

Mavs / Magic Draft @MavsDraft

Malik Monk being under-discussed while on the lakers having a career year is not something I expected. He’s been one of the most efficient guards since December

Consistency has been a problem for Monk, but this was his 12th time reaching 20 points this season. On an aging roster, the 23-year-old is exactly what the Lakers need.

It still wasn't enough for Los Angeles in this game. 

Davis was dominant when on the court with 27 points but still missed time due to foul trouble. Russell Westbrook was also more efficient than usual with 20 points on 8-of-15 shooting, adding 12 assists.

Depth is still an issue with all five bench players finishing with a negative plus-minus rating. Carmelo Anthony scored 11 while Talen Horton-Tucker provided some life, but the team still needs more to keep up in these types of shootouts.   

What's Next?

Atlanta continues its back-to-back with a home game against the Toronto Raptors on Monday. Los Angeles will have a few days off before hosting the Portland Trail Blazers on Wednesday.