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Trae Young Says Hawks Can 'Go as Far as We Want To' in NBA Playoffs

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistJune 24, 2021

MILWAUKEE, WI - JUNE 23: Trae Young #11 of the Atlanta Hawks is interviewed after the game against the Milwaukee Bucks during Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals of the 2021 NBA Playoffs on June 23, 2021 at the Fiserv Forum Center in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. 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 2021 NBAE (Photo by Kamil Krzaczynski/NBAE via Getty Images).
Kamil Krzaczynski/Getty Images

If the Atlanta Hawks want to, they can win the championship. 

At least that's what Trae Young believes. 

"I think we can go as far as we want to," the Hawks guard told reporters after leading his team to a 116-113 victory over the Milwaukee Bucks in Wednesday's Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals. "I believe in this team, and we believe in each other."

Winning a title becomes much more realistic if Young continues to play like he did Wednesday.

He was brilliant on his way to 48 points, 11 assists and seven rebounds. He wasted no time finding the holes in Milwaukee's defense and attacking with a mix of floaters in the lane and outside shots when defenders backed up to cut off his driving path.

The result was 25 points by halftime, but he was arguably better in the second half while busting out a number of lobs to John Collins—one of which he threw off the backboard—and even throwing in a shoulder shimmy before he launched a wide-open three-pointer.

When it appeared the Bucks would finally pull away—up seven in the final five minutes behind the impressive play of Giannis Antetokounmpo and Jrue Holiday—Young answered by setting up Collins for multiple baskets and hitting clutch free throws down the stretch.

That, along with a monster putback off an offensive rebound to give the Hawks the lead for good by Clint Capela, was enough to steal Game 1 on the road.

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Atlanta was the secondary storyline to the raucous crowds at Madison Square Garden early in the first round until Young stole the show. It was the secondary storyline to the top-seeded Philadelphia 76ers trying to finally break through in the second round until Young stole the show. And he is already starting to steal the show from Antetokounmpo and the Bucks in the early going of the third round.

A trip to the NBA Finals is just three wins away as Young continues to ascend to superstar status in this postseason.

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