Young and Jokic clash in Atlanta-Denver matchup

December 16, 2021 GMT

Denver Nuggets (14-14, eighth in the Western Conference) vs. Atlanta Hawks (14-14, ninth in the Eastern Conference)

Atlanta; Friday, 7:30 p.m. EST

BOTTOM LINE: Two of the league’s best scorers, Trae Young and Nikola Jokic, meet when Atlanta and Denver square off. Young ranks second in the NBA averaging 27.0 points per game and Jokic is fifth in the league averaging 26.6 points per game.

The Hawks are 8-6 on their home court. Atlanta ranks fifth in the Eastern Conference with 45.0 points per game in the paint led by Clint Capela averaging 10.1.

The Nuggets have gone 6-9 away from home. Denver is 6-10 in games decided by 10 or more points.

The teams square off for the second time this season. In the last matchup on Nov. 13 the Nuggets won 105-96 led by 23 points from Aaron Gordon, while Young scored 30 points for the Hawks.

TOP PERFORMERS: Young averages 2.8 made 3-pointers per game for the Hawks, scoring 27.0 points while shooting 38.3% from beyond the arc. John Collins is averaging 17.1 points and 7.8 rebounds over the last 10 games for Atlanta.

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Will Barton is shooting 38.2% from beyond the arc with 2.5 made 3-pointers per game for the Nuggets, while averaging 16 points and 4.2 assists. Jokic is shooting 58.2% and averaging 26.9 points over the last 10 games for Denver.

LAST 10 GAMES: Hawks: 5-5, averaging 114.6 points, 45.6 rebounds, 24.7 assists, 7.4 steals and 5.2 blocks per game while shooting 47.1% from the field. Their opponents have averaged 109.8 points per game.

Nuggets: 5-5, averaging 112.0 points, 39.1 rebounds, 28.7 assists, 7.2 steals and 3.6 blocks per game while shooting 47.8% from the field. Their opponents have averaged 112.7 points.

INJURIES: Hawks: De’Andre Hunter: out (wrist), Bogdan Bogdanovic: out (ankle), Onyeka Okongwu: out (shoulder), Solomon Hill: out for season (hamstring).

Nuggets: PJ Dozier: out (acl), JaMychal Green: out (ankle), Michael Porter Jr.: out for season (back), Austin Rivers: out (health and safety protocols), Jamal Murray: out (knee).

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The Associated Press created this story using technology provided by Data Skrive and data from Sportradar.