Dear Hawks fans: here lately…

….It seems that the NBA officials are against us. Some of the non-calls are just crazy. Last night’s game against the Chicago Bulls was one of the more egregious affairs, wherein the Hawks had twice the number of fouls as the Bulls, despite the symphony of flesh music that came even to the ears of those at home, every time Josh Smith grabbed a rebound in the 4th quarter. One of the most obvious examples was an Al Horford dunk off of a pick and roll play with Mike Bibby, in which Bulls forward Tyrus Thomas hung from Horford’s forearms like some desperate spider monkey. And 1, anybody? What is up with the calls, or lack thereof? Will the Hawks and their coaching staff finally begin standing up for themselves? In the case of Joe Johnson, a more aggressive style of play (which he has shown here lately) helps, but the man could stand to complain a bit more. But something has to give. Sooner or later. Preferably before the playoffs.

….Al Horford just doesn’t seem to be himself. Don’t get me wrong, the scoring output is nice when he gets adequate touches. But where is the double double guy we know and love? Horford’s scoring has increased this year, but his rebounding has had its ups and downs here lately. More to a point, Horford has recorded double doubles just 3 times in his last 15 games, and had double digit rebounds in only 6 of those 15 games. Is this cause for alarm? Maybe not, but it’s never good when your best rebounder is struggling, particularly against lineups that he shouldn’t be strugging against. Just 5 rebounds against the Oklahoma City Thunder or against the Chicago Bulls when Joakim Noah is out? On the flip side, it’s hard to complain about a double double if a guy gives you 23 and 9 or 24 and 10. But those games aren’t coming all that often. Hopefully Horford bounces back, and the fact is, he’s still averaging 9.4 rebounds per contest. However, there is little doubt that his rebounding inconsistencies are affecting the Hawks. He needs to turn it back up a notch.

….Marvin Williams seems to be finding his groove. Okay, so it’s only really been two games (in my opinion, anyway, feel free to disagree). But, despite still getting the least number of touches of all the starters and not posting “wow” scoring numbers, Marvin has shown efficiency and aggression. Aggression and Marvin in the same sentence in a positive light? Yes indeed. Two plays against Chicago stand out to me. One was a move in which he was clearly fouled, and he made the basket anyway (okay, it looked awkward, but we’ll chalk it up to the foul). The other was the high-flying, two-handed follow slam to a Joe Johnson missed jumper. Two plays, two games, I hear you in the back row. But it has to start somewhere. Now here’s the best part: Marvin has stepped up his hustle, which often times won’t show up in the boxscores, his defense, and his rebounding. Having averaged 8 rebounds per game over the last three games, will Marvin keep it up, or relapse into his disappearing acts? As the sixth option on offense (Jamal may be off the bench, but he’s still higher on the offensive pecking order), he won’t likely be posting any 20 point games unless somebody is missing or several guys are struggling. But if Marvin keeps up the defense and raises his rebounding average (5.1 for the season), along with hitting the open shot, the Hawks are simply a better team. The jury is out…

….Josh Smith looks more and more like a guy who should not only be the first one named to the all-star team if somebody bows out due to injury (c’mon Garnett, you don’t really need to go), but he should get the nod for next year’s team already. Smith’s all around stats haven’t had a very noticeable upwards spike, but his high assist games have proven timely, and his rebounds are gradually rising. More importantly, Smith has become quite the pivotal player late in games. Assists, rebounds (particularly offensive), and defensive plays in the third and fourth quarters have become his penchant, and he’s even been getting some big buckets in crunch time. Now if only he can raise that free throw percentage a little higher, a little faster. Despit the knocks on some of his “moves”, poor free throw shooting is really the only thing stunting Smith’s offensive growth.

….It would appear that maybe, just maybe Mike Woodson does see what’s going on…on offense. Statistics show that the Hawks are more offensively potent than ever, ranking high in several categories. However, there is a difference between potency and efficiency. Joe Johnson and Jamal Crawford are two of the most dangerous gunners in the league, and everybody knows it. As these two learn to mesh with each other, Josh Smith and Al Horford have provided a higher percentage solution closer to the basket, as more than just an occasional threat. But you know all of this already. Here’s my reason for bringing this up. During an in-game interview, Mike Woodson was asked why his team was trailing in the game, and what they needed to do to get back on top. I expected the usual refrain about playing defense and getting rebounds. Well the rebound comments were very deserving, but then the surprise came. I’ll paraphrase the quote here, “Well, our offense has gotten kinda stagnant out there, I gotta get ‘em moving around some. We need to rebound, but our defense wasn’t that bad. They just made some tough shots.”  Say what? You mean that our offense gets stagnant sometimes due to lack of movement? Could this mean that we will see more wrinkles and adjustments on offense when the usual set aren’t working? We sure hope so, don’t we? Perhaps the Hawks are learning that in the end, you still have to outscore your opponent to win the game, defense notwithstanding. That’s not to say that the Hawks don’t win with defense. They do, and they should never stray from that concept. But in those tight games where other things just aren’t working, where you can’t seem to get the loose balls, the offensive boards, and the calls….you have to score.

….Joe Johnson looks smooth. Not just smooth, but elite smooth. I don’t know that I can put my finger squarely on it, but the Main Man looks better than he did earlier in the season. Now it would seem like this would be a convenient time to say this after watching Joe post a back-to-back 30+ point performances, but I really feel like it started when he went solo against San Antonio with 31. He even looked smooth going 8 for 20 last night against Chicago. What is it, exactly? I think it’s his recent determination to get to the basket. I also think it’s because he has found a bit of a groove while playing out there with Jamal Crawford (as noted by other bloggers). Joe seems to be more in control. He’s backing guys down in the post more. He’s not forcing shots and passes nearly as much. Want a stat to chew on? How about this: Joe has had more than 2 turnovers in a game just three times in the last 18 games, with one of those games being the 37 point outburst against Oklahoma City. Joe is one of the best in the game. Here lately, he has really looked like it. Now if we can just get a few more foul calls for him, and we’ll see those 8 for 20 shooting nights offset by 8 to 12 trips to the line…

 

HAWKS VS WIZARDS

We’ll make this a quick hitter.

After disposing of Chicago to become 21 and 5 at Phillips Arena, the Hawks go on the road for a couple of games, with tonight’s contest taking place in Washington. The Wiz are coming off of yet another improbable win against Atlanta’s biggest nemesis, the Orlando Magic. How do these things work? I have no idea other than to say that sometimes it really must be about matchups and almost nothing else.

Be that as it may, the Hawks put the Wizards down last time by a double digit margin. Joe and Jamal did much of the damage, with some help from Marvin Williams.

Key Players

Antawn Jamison is pure Hawks-bane. Every time we see him, he puts up the kind of numbers that would make you think it was Dwight Howard or Shaquille O’Neal playing for Washington. His rangy skill set makes him a tough cover, so I don’t see it happening much differently this time, either. However, if Smith and Horford get 1) more touches, 2) shoot better, and 3) get more aggressive on the glass, we may see some difference. As in Jamison may only get us for 22 and 10, instead of 25 and 19.

With Jamison all but a foregone conclusion, I have to say the two guys who have me worried the most are Randy Foye and Caron Butler. Foye is quick and likes to get to the basket, but he’s not a very good shooter. Cut off his penetration, and he also won’t be able to make plays for his teammates. Caron Butler has had an up and down season, and hasn’t been his usual “tough juice” self this year. However, recent explosions against the Celtics (20 points, 11 rebounds) and the Magic (31 points and 9 rebounds) should be a warning. “Tough Juice” might be on the way back, and the Hawks don’t want to be the third team in a row to find that out the hard way.

Should be an even game tonight in light of the fact that both teams played last night. The Hawks will need to come out with energy right off the bat, or they’ll be stuck trying to figure out who will inject some late in the game. So who steps to the forefront to carry the Hawks in tonight’s matchup? Which Wizard(s) will be the most dangerous? Can Marvin maintain his intensity and aggression? Will Jamal Crawford go for 20 again? Is Mike Bibby all but a side note these days?

100 comments Add your comment

Truth-Serum

February 6th, 2010
10:21 am

First,in every positive respect.

Astro Joe

February 6th, 2010
10:34 am

Hollinger’s team stats on espn.com are restricted to paying customers, but the Hawks rank 4th in the NBA (2nd in the conference) in offensive efficiency. And that is defined as the number of points scored per 100 possessions. There are a few teams with a comparable efficiency score(~108), Hawks are performing at a level that should rank them anywhere from 3rd to 6th. But however you cut it, it seems pretty efficient based on points per possession.

doc

February 6th, 2010
10:54 am

nice work there ray, excellent points.

horford worn down a bit finding his legs gone after doing such early season heavy lifting? naw, that would be too easy to say but the trend started before his thumb injury.

it also seemed there is little communication on the boards as folks are fighting over bounds only to strip each other, send the ball out of bounds or allow the other team to get into the mix. it may be part of the switching system which also can leave us out of position to box out like i would want. if so the last point may explain why some bugs go off on us or we give up a large number of offensive bounds to the other team. i do get frustrated as i see a lot of our guys out of position on the defensive boards; again i think it can be attributed to the system. some others have mentioned the best way to neutralize josh is to make him defend on the perimeter.

Section 303

February 6th, 2010
11:25 am

I think the key player for tonight’s game is the weather. Wonder if they will even be able to get the game in? The METRO is shut down, so crowd will probably be small…My wife and I thought about taking a trip up for tonight’s game. I am so glad we decided against it!

Astro Joe

February 6th, 2010
11:27 am

I also think that Horford will get opposing center’s “A Game” now that he is an All-Star. I thought that Kaman really brought it hard at Al and I expect the same from guys like Haywood, Bogut, Lopez, etc. Those guys will want to measure themselves against Al and it is easier to feel good about yourself by besting him than Dwight.

hawkdrummer

February 6th, 2010
11:47 am

ya I also herd that the DC area is pretty bad with snow and all. Were the hawks able to fly in?

O'Brien

February 6th, 2010
12:25 pm

In my opinion, I think Butler goes off tonight. As richbrave said on the other blog, Flip might have said something to him to get him going. And if he does, I would like to see Woody run a couple plays for Marvin to take it to him.

I think Hawks lose tonight. We’ve been struggling on the road recently, this a back to back, and the Wiz will be motivated to knock off another Eastern Conference Power. That being said, this being the Hawks, I wont be surprised if we find a way to win.

I think switching is one of the big reasons why the Hawks dont consistently rebound the way they should, because our bigs are out of position sometimes. And instead of hustling back to the glass, they start getting ready to leak out on the offensive end.

Ultimately though, rebounding is about effort. And I just dont think the Hawks want it bad enough some nights. We are more of a finesse team, and I wish we could get tough.

oldmike

February 6th, 2010
3:37 pm

One question for Don Nelson – “just what exactly about Jamaal Crawford didn’t you like?” Thanks for the gift. Take this guy off the team and we’re not even close to where we are now!

niremetal

February 6th, 2010
4:17 pm

No game tonight. Damn blizzard…

Big Ray

February 6th, 2010
4:25 pm

Doc ,

Could be that Horford is getting worn down a bit, but he’s also a young fella. Then again, it could be what O’brien says: switching leaves them out of place for rebounding at times. All the same, that magnifies Josh Smith’s efforts even more, as lately he seems to be fighting two and three opponents by himself for the rebound.

Here’s my other problem with the rebounding, though. Other teams find ways to help out with it, usually backcourt members. The Thunder outrebounded us handily. Bigger culprits? Try Russell Westbrook, who had 9 boards of his own. Hawks are going to have to stick together on the boards. Strange that Josh seems to be the biggest effort giver in recent times. Loving his effort (it erases past instances like that 0 rebound effort last year that some are determined to never forget about), but he can’t do it alone anymore than Horford could.

O’brien ,

True. That was one element that Horford brought, toughness. He’s lacking in it a bit lately. I know he’ll get back on it, though. All the same, we could use some help off the bench in that area. And we just haven’t been getting it.

Important to take this one in Washington. Why? Because winning in Memphis is considerably tougher these days.

Big Ray

February 6th, 2010
4:26 pm

No game tonight. Damn blizzard…

Seriously? Dang!

The Real Hawk

February 6th, 2010
4:36 pm

Marvin is a defensive player only. Not a true starter. Compare to other shooting forwards in the league. No comparison. Stop acting as if he will become something else. What you see is what you get!

Marcus

February 6th, 2010
4:38 pm

Elite Hawks analysts that you bloggers are: Since there is no game tonight, chew on this …

Throw out the BEST 1st round pick option for the Hawks and WHY (including recent personnel addtions in Crawford/Teague) for 2 end-of-season scenarios:
1. JJ leaves in free agency
2. JJ returns (less likely)

Marcus

February 6th, 2010
4:40 pm

Ray,
not sure where you are typing from but I am in the middle of it (Delaware). I have to go out and physically move 2 ft. deep snowdrifts in my driveway. Talk about a real dang!! LOL.

Big Ray

February 6th, 2010
5:14 pm

Marcus ,

You’re right. You definitely have it dang worse than I do, LOL! Good luck with that, and stay safe.

By the way, why do you think JJ is less likely to return next season?

Marcus

February 6th, 2010
7:36 pm

I figure if he wanted to stay, he would have considered the offer the Hawks made.

KakNiqueTree

February 6th, 2010
7:56 pm

What good is complaining and b!tching gonna do? All that’s going to come out of ‘asking for more favorable calls’ are fines. Nobody needs any part of that. Just play hard and win and do the things they’ve been doing all season. It’s going to take care of itself. And Joe Johnson does NOT need to ‘demand’ better treatment from the officials. That’s only a waste of time.

Melvin

February 6th, 2010
8:36 pm

Astro,

You was looking for a vet PG that could bridge the gap between Bibby and Teague, well look who’s available. What the heck was the Warriors thinking when they did this????

http://warriors.blogs.pressdemocrat.com/10555/warriors-waive-claxton-and-why-it-matters/

KevinA

February 7th, 2010
9:54 am

Since we had an unexpected break in the action, what does the gang think about the looming cloud of the NBA contract.

http://hoopshype.com/rumors.htm

Some of the issues high lighted would forever change the landscape of NBA salaries.

Scroll till you see Sterns face towards the bottom of the page.

HeatCheck!!!!!!!

February 7th, 2010
10:24 am

Jamal Crawford shouldve been an all star! How great has he been!

niremetal

February 7th, 2010
11:23 am

Marcus,

A 4-year deal at this stage in JJ’s career was not an offer that JJ could seriously consider. 3-time All-Stars in their prime don’t settle for deals that last less than 4 years. Just ask Elton Brand or Rashard Lewis, both of whom were not in JJ’s class when they became free agents (Rashard was a 1-time All-Star, and Elton Brand was a 2-timer who had only played 8 games in the previous season). This is the last big-time contract JJ will get. No way he was taking 4 years, knowing full well that teams would offer him a 5 or 6 year deal in 2010.

niremetal

February 7th, 2010
11:37 am

Melvin,

Yeah, I saw that. What in the world was Nellie thinking??? You don’t waive someone with an expiring contract 2 weeks before the trade deadline!

KevinA,

Yeah, things will get pretty interesting a year from now. I think a lot of people are hoping that an upturn in the economy will come soon and wash away the owners’ concerns…but I wouldn’t count on that. The owners have long wanted both a hard salary cap and lower max contracts for players (think $10M/year maximum).

But the players have a bargaining chip that most owners seem not to have considered: With the increasing number of Euro and Chinese teams willing to invest big-time money, they can jump ship and play overseas. A €5M contract is the equivalent of a $11M contract right now, once you factor in the exchange rate and differences in taxation. Moscow, Madrid, Barcelona, the Athens teams (Olympiacos and Panathinaikos), even Maccabi Tel Aviv…all those teams have the capacity to throw the equivalent of a max contract at an NBA player. Imagine if Carmelo jumped to Europe in 2011 instead of waiting for the outcome of an NBA lockout? It’s not a joke of a possibility. If the free agent market is frozen at the end of the 2011 season and Madrid comes along to offer him €10M/yr, he might jump on that instead of staying put and settling for a “max” contract under the next NBA collective bargaining agreement – which might well be 50% below what he would make in Europe.

Big Ray

February 7th, 2010
11:49 am

Don Nelson will keep that franchise sunk if they keep listening to him.

But he’s not the only one. How much do Michael Jordan and his boss regret bowing to Larry Brown’s demands on draft day over a year ago? Brown demands so much with whichever organization he works (though he’s much more successful than Nellie). He insisted they draft DJ Augustin when they really wanted Brook Lopez. Now Brown is banging the hammer again, wanting Augustin out of there.

The guy convinced them to take a small, but talented pg over a franchise-sized center. Yeech…

As for the 4 year contract offered to Joe, it was a formality. At the time, that was all the Hawks could offer. The idea was that they probably knew he wouldn’t take it when he could get a 5 or 6 year deal the next year, but they would offer it anyway (hey, at least let the guy know you want him). He’ll get his deal next year. The only question is from whom.

My next blog will feature some words of wisdom from MannyT , with his permission of course.

O'Brien

February 7th, 2010
2:39 pm

Is Speedy healthy? Don’t laugh, but could he be our defensive guard (the problem with Mario is he has no handles).

Ray,

Imagine the Bobcats with Stephen Jackson, Gerald Wallace, and Brook Lopez, and LB coaching.

The Mavericks ran Nelson out of town, and sooner or later, the Warriors will too.

I think Chicago will make a run at JJ (assuming they miss out on Bosh and Wade).

niremetal

February 7th, 2010
3:25 pm

O’Brien,

I actually think Chicago will go after JJ before Wade. No doubt Wade is a better player if you’re starting from scratch, but the Bulls are starting with Derrick Rose and Luol Deng already on the roster. JJ works better off the ball than does Wade and JJ is a more versatile defender. As far as “fit” goes, the Bulls already have a 6′3/6′4 combo guard in Rose, and they probably don’t want to have an undersized backcourt in the physical East. Also, Rose and Deng already gives them two athletic, penetrating threats, but they lack a deadly outside shooter. The one thing that JJ does significantly better than Wade offensively is spread the floor, and that happens to be the thing the Bulls need most from their perimeter players right now.

Lastly, Wade is a guy who relies on his quickness and athleticism quite a bit, and JJ is more of a finesse and “touch” player. It’s easy to imagine JJ being a productive player in the 5th year of his next contract as a Ray Allen type; Wade is more of a risk, particularly given his shoulder and knee ailments (which often are a precursor to arthritis).

As far as Bosh goes, I won’t argue that they would rather have JJ than Bosh, because the Bulls definitely are weak at PF…at least right now. But Taj Gibson is looking better than expected this year, and if the Bulls are convinced he’ll become a 15/10 guy, they might prefer to spend their money on a SG.

It’s the fact that JJ would seem to fit so perfectly in Chicago that makes it easy to see why the rumors about where JJ could go if he leaves Atlanta revolve so much around Chicago.

O'Brien

February 7th, 2010
4:12 pm

nire,

Good points. Also, the money it will take to get JJ is less than what it would take to sign JJ.

Another point would be Wade is more likely to stay put in Miami, because Miami will go after Boozer or Bosh if possible (I think Wade and Bosh have the same agents).

I think a team of Rose, Deng, JJ, Noah, and Taj Gibson would be a nice young team. Plus Rose would get JJ a lot more easy shots due to his penetration.

Checking out the Magic-Celtics game (Celtics leading in the 3rd), Howard as 4 fouls, in the 3rd quarter. Why is it that teams can get Howard in foul trouble, but the Hawks can’t?

Is it because we dont have a penetrating guard? Is it because Refs just dont give us any calls?

MannyT

February 7th, 2010
4:19 pm

@Ray…you are welcome to use my thoughts/words. Just no paparazzi following me around for pics ;-)

That Wiz game will be tricky to get in. Thursdays are the best days for make ups in the NBA. The easy thing to do is put it on Thu April 15th at the end of the season. No games scheduled, but it could be empty b/c the Wiz are not in line to make the playoffs.

Option 2 is Thu, Mar 11, but that requires the Wiz to play 3 nights in a row, but it would be a road game in the middle of 2 home games which is better than 2 or 3 nights on the road. (FYI, the Verizon Center is booked during the rest of that week when the Hawks could play.)

Option 3 is Thu, Feb 25th. The Hawks would have that 3 nights in a row (home, road, home) deal and the Wiz would have 3 games in a row at home. How many folks are coming to see the Wiz on 3 consecutive nights.

If I am the Wiz, I lobby for option 2. I think the Hawks and the league would be up for it.

The best thing about this postponement is that it eliminates one of the many back to backs the Hawks have at the end of the season. Now only 9 B2Bs left. (33 games remain, 18 are B2B. That does not count the impact of the Wizards make up game which is likely to create another one or two if we get option 3.)

It is odd to see that Nellieville would dump Speedy’s contract. They still have to pay him and they lose the expiring deal. I guess they really needed Tolliver. This is one financial upside to running a lean roster as the Hawks have done this season.

…and I think I have a better chance of hitting the lottery for 100+ mil, than a deal being struck for Speedy Claxton to return to Atlanta this season.

BWAF

O'Brien

February 7th, 2010
4:36 pm

I’ve always wondered about the Lakers and their high payroll (isn’t it $80 something range?). Not to mention their head coach makes over $10 mil per year. But I saw on Hoopshye that the Lakers made $40 mil in profit last year. Wow.

I wonder how much money ASG made last year (or how much money did they lose)?

O'Brien

February 7th, 2010
4:37 pm

* should be $80 something million range

doc

February 7th, 2010
5:06 pm

nire, interesting article about ownership and nhl success by schutlz today if you hadnt read or noticed it. eye opening 17000 fans there ten years ago on avg. atlanta was eager to get it back as it had been very successful before cousins ran out of money. attendance now avg 13000 with one playoff game in ten years. bettman lays the problem at the feet of split ownership and their lack of interest in hockey not fans from atlanta. the flames and hockey rocked in the 70’s as i was there. now it is split between a major league franchise acting like a minor league team and the minor league team doing just the opposite.

Astro Joe

February 7th, 2010
5:42 pm

Interesting look at the standings. Check out games against + .500 teams. Dang Celtics blew another lead.

http://espn.go.com/nba/standings/_/type/expanded/group/2

Big Ray

February 7th, 2010
5:55 pm

Celtics are slowly becoming toast. They may have repeated last year but for the injury to Garnett. Hard to see the “Big Three/Four” taking them all the way again…

niremetal

February 7th, 2010
6:13 pm

Doc,

Bettman is an idiot. He can blame Atlanta fans all he wants, but look at the damned attendance rankings and you can see it’s very hard for a southern team to succeed. No southern team is in the top 20 in the NHL in attendance. The Florida Panthers are the best at #22. Tampa Bay is #24, Nashville #25, Carolina #26, and the Thrashers #28. The highest ranked warm-weather team is the Dallas Stars at #16. The other warm-weather teams are Los Angeles (#18), Anaheim (#23), and Phoenix (#30).

Hockey rocked in the 70’s? Are you kidding? The team’s attendance was not bad in the first couple years and then fell off a cliff – just like the Thrashers. The team was nearing bankruptcy in 1980, which is why they sold and moved to Calgary (which then had a population less than 1/3 of Atlanta’s).

Blame the owners all you want. Of course Bettman will – do you think he wants to acknowledge that expanding to the south has been a financial catastrophe for the NHL? But that’s not reality.

niremetal

February 7th, 2010
6:14 pm

*He can blame Atlanta owners

niremetal

February 7th, 2010
6:25 pm

And doc,

atlanta was eager to get it back as it had been very successful before cousins ran out of money

Well why do you think he ran out of money? Could it be, perhaps, because the Flames couldn’t get fans to attend the games and couldn’t get a TV contract because no one around Atlanta cared about hockey?

And I strongly disagree that more than a tiny fraction of (white) Atlantans care about hockey and were clamoring for a team. They don’t and they didn’t. Around Atlanta, football and baseball reign, followed by basketball, and then hockey a distant fourth (maybe even lower if you count college football and bball as separate sports). Attendance in the Thrashers first season was 17000 – which sounds good until you realize that was only good for 11th in the NHL, and barely more than what the Nashville Predators (a team from a metro area 1/4 the size of Atlanta) drew just 400 fewer fans per game the same year (also their first year in existence).

Expansion teams always get good attendance when they first come to town – just ask Memphis. But that is fool’s gold. The Thrashers were doomed to be financially unsuccessful being from a warm weather city with a large African-American population that already had 3 other well-established pro sports teams.

vava74

February 7th, 2010
8:09 pm

I read somewhere that Bettman is an infiltrated agent sent by stern to curb NHL’s success by pumping the complete nonsense if expanding the legue south and away from hockey’s motherland…

vava74

February 7th, 2010
8:43 pm

It was obviously a joke but a very good one… Just don’t remember who wrote it…

Marcus

February 7th, 2010
10:42 pm

So ….back to my original thought …nire, Manny T, Big Ray and others who wish to jump in…
Which current college players are the best options for the Hawks (position and fit based on playing style) in the June 2010 draft?

niremetal

February 7th, 2010
10:47 pm

Marcus,

I don’t follow college ball too closely, so I don’t have a good answer to that. Right now, I’d say our biggest need is for a Kirk Hinrich-type PG – ie one who can play lockdown D, distribute, and knock down the open shot. Know anyone who fits that description?

doc

February 7th, 2010
11:47 pm

nire, cousins lost it because of a severe hit on the economy that hit real estate market. one of his partners went belly up riches to ruin story not unlike what has happened recently.

niremetal

February 8th, 2010
12:12 am

Doc,

Cousins owned (or co-owned) multiple businesses, including the Omni Group and the Flames, and each of Cousins’ companies (including his real estate companies) were done in corporate for with limited liability. He sold the Flames because they weren’t profitable, not because the real estate market crashed. One thing does not effect the other, and the NBA makes damned sure of that when they approve new owners, because the league obviously can’t afford to have teams collapse due to the volatility of outside markets.

It’s amazing to me how many people still don’t get that. Just because Business A fails, it does not mean that that failure impacts Business B in a meaningful way if each is insulated from the other by limited liability and other corporate rules.

MannyT

February 8th, 2010
12:53 am

@niremetal…I didn’t read the Bettman thing as blaming the fans. I think he used the drop in attendance to state that the franchise was going in the wrong direction. He did state that the NHL was commited to Atlanta.

…and how many of us sports bloggers that are not attorneys are into the law of corporate structure? Just wait until doc gives you the quiz on the back :oops:

@O’Brien…The Lakers are in a very good media market that probably gets them much more $$$ than the Hawks get from local TV & Radio. Their success also leads to allow higher pricing on tickets. Besides, they have no NFL competition and are in the 2nd largest city.

This link may help with the questions about value and profit.
http://www.forbes.com/lists/2009/32/basketball-values-09_NBA-Team-Valuations_Income.html

A pair of telltale stats for me…click on a team and look at the gate receipts and the total revenue. The difference is $$$ that does not come directly from tickets. Note that the Lakers ticket revenue is almost our total revenue and their non gate receipts are larger than our total revenue. Yes they can afford luxury tax. Maybe we should lobby for a NHL like hard salary cap :lol:

@Marcus, I don’t have a good answer for you. I have no idea who will be available around the 25th pick. I’d imagine we will be taking the best player available that is not a PG. Probably a body big enough to be a solid SF (Marvin sized)

BWAF

Marcus

February 8th, 2010
6:48 am

Last year about this time, I liked Villanova comb-guard Scottie Reynolds (sp?) if he came out early. He didn’t, we got Teague, rest is history.
Right now it is all theorhetical where we end up in draft order, so I was kinda looking for a “wish list” of players for 2 scenarios: With JJ (if he re-signs) or without JJ, assuming that decision will impact our draft selection.
If JJ leaves, does Crawford step into a starters role, then do we backfill Crawford with Teague as 6th man, then do we backfill Teague with another rookie PG/SG for depth?…or do we go for depth/youth on the frontline at SF?

O'Brien

February 8th, 2010
7:37 am

Speaking of SF, rumor has it the Nets might buy out their SF Bobby Simmons. I dont know if he’s been playing well or not, but I was wondering if thats a guy the Hawks could take a look at. He basically wouldnt cost the Hawks anything if he does get bought out.

I hope that signing Mario will not prevent the Hawks from adding somebody that becomes available later on.

Hawks will probably go best available player in the draft but we will probably need a backup PF or a backup SF.

niremetal

February 8th, 2010
8:56 am

MannyT – Right below my first post to Doc, I corrected the first line of that post. I was saying that Bettman “can blame Atlanta owners all he wants.” Just was getting ahead of myself :)

Astro Joe

February 8th, 2010
9:21 am

Melvin, no thanks on Speedy. Although it wouldn’t surprise me to see him land with either Phoenix or Boston, as both teams desperately need a back-up PG. I just don’t trust his health (and I was one of the very few who applauded his signing way back when).

Marcus, I like4 the idea of drafting for a particular need that late in the draft. For example, the Varnado kid from Miss State is an elite shot-blocker and rebounder. He could help us with our interior defense when Smith is off the floor. Is he a complete player? No and he may never turn into a starter. But if he could become a Joel Anthony type for 15+ minutes a game, that is worth a 1st round pick around 25-30 IMO. )Especially if he could go from Joel Anthony to Carl Landry after a few seasons). Similarly, if there is a Mbah-Mbah or Affaflo type perimeter defender (with good size) who shows some shooting skill, that would be another useful player. I’m thinking a budding Bruce Bowen type… defend well immediately and grow into a good corner shooter. So my choice late in the first round is “need/niche” as opposed to best-available-player.

vava74

February 8th, 2010
10:30 am

Astro,

Unless we off load a few contracts it is highly unlikely that any second round pick will be kept long enough to verify its possible usefulness as a niche player… unless it completely replaces Mario.

We will probably enter the season again next year with 12 guys under contract and sign 1 more if necessary but not beyond that.

Astro Joe

February 8th, 2010
11:18 am

Vava, I was talking about 1st round picks. Joe Smith, RandMo, Mario and Collins are all FAs next summer. If we re-sign Joe, we will have at least 4 roster vacancies (excluding the 1st round pick). I agree that a 2nd rounder won’t likely make the team… unless Sund surprises us and spends a little coin (as in use the MLE).

Here’s a fearless prediction… Doc Rivers may be thrown overboard in Boston this summer. I know that the team is old and has endured a lot of injuries. But don’t be surprised if Ainge decides that bringing in someone like Jeff Van Gundy or Doug Collins may be the best way to milk one more title run out of this old bunch. And if Doc does become a FA coach this summer, does that give Sund a viable candidate (other than PJ Carlesimo or Bob Hill heaven forbid) during negotiations with Woody? Or would Doc be too expensive for the ASG?

Hawk n the Ham

February 8th, 2010
11:37 am

How about Derrik Favors? Chances are he will be a 1 and done at GT. Probably would still be around by the time the Hawks pick.

6′10
250 lbs
60% FG% <– Freshman on top of that.

Astro Joe

February 8th, 2010
11:51 am

Hawk n the Ham… Favors is projected to be a top 5 lottery pick. Hawks will pick around 24-26. Only way Favors is there when the Hawks pick is if we lose the remainder of our games or Favor suffers a major injury.