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Hawks Host Sixers in a Battle of 16-7 Teams

UPDATE: Spencer Hawes says he's playing tonight!!!

DOUBLE UPDATE: Elton Brand is OUT with a sprained thumb. Lavoy Allen will start in his place.

Less than 24 hours after completely falling apart against the Miami Heat in the 4th quarter, the Sixers scurry to Atlanta to face the Hawks team they beat two weeks ago. If you recall, the Sixers mounted a 51-29 second half bruising to down Atlanta minus Al Horford. Well, they're still without Horford and will be for a while, but the team hasn't been suffering as much as previously thought.

Tied with the Sixers for 4th in the East with a 16-7 record, Atlanta has won 7 of its last 10 games, riding some pretty stellar play out of Jeff Teague, selected only two picks after a certain Jrue Holiday in the 2009 NBA Draft. Teague was held mostly in check by Jrue last time the teams met, scoring 12 on 10 shots and 6 assists to 2 turnovers. He did pester Jrue on the other end though, forcing 5 turnovers from the normally conservative Holiday.

Though the boys are certainly winded from chasing LeBron James and Dwyane Wade (and Mike Miller, Norris Cole, and Mario Chalmers), at least Elton Brand and Nikola Vucevic didn't play too many minutes. It'll be interested to see what a rested Vuce can do tonight, though there's no telling how much Collins will play him. The Hawks interior is extremely vulnerable and taking it to the basket will be a big key to winning the game.

Here's hoping for a big game from Thaddeus Young, who always seems to be pesky on the offensive glass against Atlanta. Who else is primed for a big night?

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