Hawks Fans: Safety in numbers and changing landscapes

I have to say I’m pretty impressed with you, my fellow Hawks fans.

Despite the fact that things are in slow motion this time of year, y’all have really kept up the discussion (intelligently, I might add) at a pretty high rate, even when it may or may not seem like there is a lot to talk about. Or maybe it’s not that there isn’t a lack of subject matter, as much as there is so many things that have been re-hashed over and over. Yet things have not gone stale, and that is thanks to you. So, let’s keep it going…

 

Bench Mob

I think that the idea of watching this team under Larry Drew really has sparked a great deal of discussion, despite the various supposed or assumed circumstances surrounding his hire. One issue in particular that many are probably anticipating is how he will use his bench. After years of watching a Hawks rotation that was comprised primarily of seven and sometimes guys (I’d say Mo Evans’ status as a rotation player was in a constant state of flux), should we expect a lot of change? Is there a “safety in numbers” line of thinking with Drew and his staff? Even more to the point, does he truly feel that he can go a solid eight, nine, or even ten deep with the current roster he has (plus whomever gets signed between now and the start of the season)?

There are a lot of questions here, and they won’t be answered until that first buzzer sounds, though we should get some pretty good hints of what is to come during the preseason (where we will also get to see that vaunted offense). Okay, so we know Jamal Crawford and Zaza Pachulia are rotation players. What of Mo Evans? Will he get consistent minutes? Maybe we should be asking whether or not he’ll earn them, and where he’ll get most of his playing time. Jeff Teague is expected to see an increase in minutes as well, becoming a part of the rotation. That automatically gives the Hawks a nine man rotation. Will Josh Powell be a regular in the frontcourt as well? He reportedly came here to get more playing time than he was getting with the L.A. Lakers, but he will have to provide something that is missing, for that to happen. What of Jason Collins? Is he another Mike Woodson scapegoat conduit or a useful player? 

There is another view we can take on this “safety in numbers” theory, and it applies to Drew’s offense. All five guys on the attack, he says. Well, that is certainly better than one guy on the attack by himself, with the variation of such an offense being that the ball is passed to another guy who goes on the attack by himself. But….might it be too complicated? Will guys who have gotten the lion’s share of the shot attempts get the same number of attempts, or will that change? Will the Hawks learn to “ride the hot hand”, or will Drew call for a strict offense that requires sharing of the ball regardless of what is happening on the court? While the latter is probably unlikely to be the case, you just never really know until the games are played. So much depends on the players buying into and committing to a workable scheme.

To this point, the Hawks have gotten by on talented players, despite the fact that we sometimes undervalue what we have. The front office and ownership seem to think that the current roster has enough talent, but that it could be better utilized. How much better?

What are your thoughts? Is there safety in numbers?

 

If you wanted another big man….

You got your wish. Well, sort of. With the addition of Kenny Gattison, the Hawks put a tough guy on their bench, but he’ll be wearing a suit full-time. A gritty and effective role player when he was in a jersey, Gattison should be bringing that attitude to practices (we certainly hope). Fortunately, he also brings some experience on the sidelines, having spent a couple years in New Jersey under John Calipari, and more recently several years in New Orleans, including under Byron Scott. One wonders – will he be another “big man” coach, same as Ty Hill, or will his area of concentration be elsewhere? What do you think of this addition to Drew’s staff?

 

On The Horizon

Regardless of how we think of them, some members of the Hawks front office are wanted by other teams. As Hawks beat writer Michael Cunningham reports, director of pro personnel Steve Rosenberry is apparently headed to Portland to become an assistant GM. Meanwhile, current Hawks assistant GM David Pendergraft could be taking Steve Kerr’s old job in Phoenix. So what does that mean for the Hawks? While we probably don’t care too much as fans who the new director of pro personnel and college scouting would be (seriously, did you even know who Rosenberry was before this?), there is perhaps a modicum of interest in who Sund would replace Pendergraft with, should he be moving to the Arizona desert.

Having been in the league well over 30 years, Sund surely has numerous contacts, and for every guy who wants to be a GM some day, there’s a guy who knows that becoming an assistant GM is stepping stone leading up to that in most cases. If I recall correctly, Pendergraft is currently over all scouting. So, whoever would replace him (again, if he goes) would presumably take over that task and responsibility. But what do we think of Pendergraft? Has his scouting experience and expertise shown to be worth something, or would we be anticipating an upgrade? To be totally honest, there is only so much to work with. Under Sund and Pendergraft’s watch, the following guys have been drafted by the Hawks – Jeff Teague, Sergei Gladyr, Pape Sy, and Jordan Crawford (correct me if I’ve missed anybody). Even with Teague, we still don’t quite know what we have. However, we shall hopefully enjoy finding that out.

Thoughts, my fellow Hawks fans?

 

(UPDATE): One more thing. Did you see this one coming, and does it make Boston a tougher matchup for us?

193 comments Add your comment

Astro Joe

August 5th, 2010
5:09 pm

OB, are you suggesting that a few weeks after the fever pitch of the Celtics series, Sund should have fired Woody? Do you really want to put that in writing? Because that’s well, not one of the smarter things to suggest.

niremetal

August 5th, 2010
5:32 pm

Astro,

He, me, and many others have put that in writing. I think it was a bad to not fire Woodson then. I suspect that the reason why they didn’t is because they thought it would “look bad” after our “surprise” showing against the Celtics (it shouldn’t have been a surprise given the Hawks’ performance at home and the Celts’ weakness when it comes to defending opposing wings). That’s how the Hawks were being portrayed in the media, anyway. But Woodson had not shown the necessary ability to make in-game adjustments that you need to win the big games. We saw a repeat of that each of the past two years. I think it was apparent even after the Boston series, but I think Sund and/or ASG was worried about the perception of firing a coach who had just “led” his team on an “unexpected” playoff run. If that’s the reason why they did it, then I think it was a coward move. If not, then it was just a straight-up bad move.

Big Ray

August 5th, 2010
5:46 pm

Nire ,

The disturbing trend is that these minimum salary types are what we seem to be going after when it comes to backup big men (with the exception of Zaza). How has it worked out for us so far (RandMo, Lorenzen, Collins, Joe Smith, etc)?

I think Zaza is a decent backup, and maybe we can get better consistency out of him when he gets more consistent PT, I don’t know. Is he the rugged, “hold it down in the post when Al is out, or ill-matched against a bigger/heavier center”?

On another note, I have found the sparse commentary about Jason Collins kind of funny. On the one hand, the word is that Gearon and possibly others felt Collins was underutilized by Woodson. On the other hand, the word is that he will be a more effective contributor since he’s lost weight and is expected to be in better condition.

Ok….which one is it? And losing weight didn’t do a damn thing for RandMo…

Big Ray

August 5th, 2010
5:53 pm

Nire ,

Last question was rhetorical, of course.

niremetal

August 5th, 2010
5:58 pm

Ray,

1) I think Zaza is one of the best backups in the NBA. My gripe about this hunt for yet another big man has always been that pretty much anyone we could have even had a prayer of getting on the free agent market would not been as good as Zaza. That includes Shaq, in my opinion. The only possible exception is Jermaine O’Neal, but he obviously isn’t the type of center people are talking about.

That, more than anything, has been my gripe. Al’s comment about wanting more help notwithstanding, we have an All-Star starting center and a good backup. Against 75% of the centers in the NBA today, I would rather have Zaza than Shaq. That goes up to 100% with Al. Really, if you’re looking for someone better-suited than Al or Zaza (both of whom are not afraid of playing physical), I think all you’re really looking for is an immovable object. For that purpose, Shaq’s only real edge on Collins at this point is that Shaq still gets respect from refs.

Oh and in any case – Dwight Howard wasn’t the reason we lost to Orlando. For all these reasons, I don’t like the focus on getting another big man. I think our depth on the wing will prove to be a bigger issue this year, especially if Joe or Marvin gets hurt.

2) 1) Why can’t it be that Collins both will be more effective now that he has lost weight and that Drew will utilize him better than Woody did? It’s kind of odd to pin it on one or the other. Hell, there might even be a link between the two – if Collins thought he wouldn’t play much anyway, did he really have much motivation to get in better shape?

Josh Powell

August 5th, 2010
5:58 pm

niremetal

August 5th, 2010
6:00 pm

Also, on Collins – am I the only one who remembers that he was a very good “immovable object” defensive center not too long ago? Anyone?

Sautee

August 5th, 2010
6:04 pm

I’ll just be damned, an ANDO sighting.

Congrats on the baby boy soon to come.

AJ,

To me, the losses in Boston were so egregious that any “glow” from winning three here was well eclipsed. Not only that, but you could see even then that, as O’Brien has said Woodson had no Plan B other than “try harder at Plan A”.

That is, his lack of ability to adjust was very evident by then.

Sautee

August 5th, 2010
6:11 pm

nire,

What’s “not too long ago” to you?

I haven’t thought of Collins that way since around 05.

But I have high hopes that you are correct.

O'Brien

August 5th, 2010
6:24 pm

AJ,

2 years ago, the Pacers stumbled down the stretch, allowing the Hawks to sneak in as the 8th seed.

Combined with how we got blown out in Boston for 4 playoff games, and woody’s abysmal W-L record up to that point, I think he should not have been renewed.

Also, at that time, Marvin, bibby, JJ and Zaza Would all be free agents within 2 years. If rick had brought in his Guy, he would have had a chance to evaluate them under another coach.

But considering BK tried to fire woody and promote Drew, but was not allowed, I wonder if sund would have been allowed to let woody go back then…

vava74

August 5th, 2010
6:48 pm

I count this as one of the most endearing and utterly delicious moments of the 09-10 Season:

Collins in Cleveland frustrated Shaq 5 or 6 possessions in a row to the point in which fumes were coming out of his (Shaq’s) ears.

Unfortunately that run of possessions ended on a questionable block foul called on Collins on a stumbling Shaq drive…

Well, the call was not that bad, Collins was still moving his feet, but just barely…

During that period, the Hawks got back into the game, in particular due to the fact that up until that point Shaq had been authorized by the refs to simply stomp and run over Al in the low post and was doing a lot of damage (he should have been called for at least 3 or 4 offensive fouls).

If I am not wrong, Shaq kind of lost his wheels from that point onwards and was not a major factor.

Then, during the second half we had “the shot clock incident”…

niremetal

August 5th, 2010
6:52 pm

Sautee,

I was thinking more like ‘07, maybe even ‘08. I remember watching a couple games where he got really physical with Dwight and almost completely shut him down. Granted, both guys have changed since then, but honestly I thought Collins played great D against Dwight in the playoffs but the refs jobbed him.

I always gave the caveat that the biggest difference between Shaq and JColl at this point in their respective careers is that Shaq gets more respect from the refs. Sadly, that makes a big difference. Honestly, take the respect from the refs away, and Collins (who always has been a good, fundamentally sound defender) is a better defensive player than Shaq (who wasn’t a great defender in his prime) is today. But refs will always have more of an influence on the game than they should.

vava74

August 5th, 2010
6:54 pm

Oh, and let me telling you something:

In the event that Shaq fits well in the Celtics, neither of you should come back to this blog and say that we should have signed him.

As I mentioned yesterday, Shaq’s game does not suit our style and our roster and on the contrary it suits the Celtics’ geriatric half court game.

AND, this is the HUGE and: Shaq will get with that uniform A LOT MORE calls going in his favor than he would if he had signed with us. Two fold at least.

drmaryb (*_*)

August 5th, 2010
7:37 pm

Man on Fire!

VaVa74: fantastic reading. Great Stuff on the Shaq -vs- Collins situation.
I have never really seen Collins play all that much as I don’t follow the Nets!

I would really like to see Jason get some burn this next season.

Doc

I enjoyed your response to me on page one! I am with you all the way on that
ASKG – Atlanta Spirit-Killers Group! They’re so bad we had to rename them.

I have NO earthly idea what they ate thinking. I hear they travel a lot and are
never in town at the same time! Pretty hard to run a NBA franchise when
You don’t like each other. They got a lot of nerves to be talking about:

TEAM CHEMISTRY?

Oh yaeah … And we LIKE our Core?
Heck … They don’t even like their GROUP!

ASKG! Hey doc, we couldn’t even make this stuff up?
Can you only imagine what the League and Players are saying behind our backs?
Not one FA tagged Atlanta as a likely destination! Shaq included!
Sure, this is a great place to live and party – but, you wouldn’t wanna’ play there.
Hey .. No problem – they got a really NICE airport, you can leave in style and go anywhere you like!

That’s why I love Joe so much! Because, he really wants to be here.
He moved his family here from Arkansasl, and on all accounts they love Atlanta’s
Lifestyle too … Coming from Arkansas I guess anywhere is good.
Joe found a beautiful lady and wife and has a new born on the way.
He is really settling into the South! Now, we just need to grow
Al and Josh into perennial All-Stars and we look real good moving forward.

In spite of the owners!

Mike is back

August 5th, 2010
8:48 pm

Vava74 and Nire, you can’t be serious about comparing Collins’s career to Shaq to support your point. If Collins is in better shape…I too believe he can contribute and help the team…however, I wouldn’t get carried away.

Let’s not forget we are talking about a guaranteed future Hall of Famer in Shaq…can Collins even be mentioned in that breathe….pleasssssssssse. I hope Sund and ASG wasn’t drinking the same Bull SH**T as the both of Us.

niremetal

August 5th, 2010
9:55 pm

Mike,

I think Vava and I were both talking about Shaq (age 38) versus Jason Collins (age 31) now, not the course of their respective careers. So take that straw man BS elsewhere.

Mike is back

August 5th, 2010
10:25 pm

Nire, straw man is that BS you keep trying to spin to justify the ASG. Just saying.

niremetal

August 5th, 2010
10:27 pm

Mike,

You clearly don’t know what a straw man is. Have a good night.

Mike is back

August 5th, 2010
10:33 pm

Thanks, good night to you too.

Melvin

August 5th, 2010
10:39 pm

As much as Shaq gets bash, when was the last time a Shaq led team lost to the Hawks. Was it in his Miami days?????

MannyT

August 5th, 2010
11:42 pm

Where is the Wizard of Oz when you need him.
Scarecrow, strawman, close enough :-)
http://www.iep.utm.edu/fallacy/#Straw%20Man

doc

August 6th, 2010
12:11 am

nire, have you had a seizure or become a parody of yourself? you demean shaq but admit the askg are stupid. you ask if i am still in 2006 when i state shaq is the best out there for what we need and then you make a comment like collins has some game. well i looked up some stats. collins NEVER came close to meaningful stats even in his “prime”. his last season where he avg about 23 minutes a game was in 2006 i believe and shaq’s worst mpg was just last year and they dont even compare. geez did you fall off a ledge and hit your head guy? call an ambulance dude. vava, did you just go along for the ride or did you infarct a part of your cerebrum when nire fell?

here are the stats to refresh yours and everyone else’s memories that shaq has fallen but not that far and if zaza has his numbers next year that shaq had last year we will ask that he be comeback player of the year.

here you go served up:

shaq …. http://sports.yahoo.com/nba/players/847/career;_ylt=Anfs5jit96yTr8PKH5l3fyQBPKB4

doc

August 6th, 2010
12:12 am

got caught in moderation and dont know when i will get out so i have broken it up .. to finish:

collins …. http://sports.yahoo.com/nba/players/3530/career;_ylt=Anfs5jit96yTr8PKH5l3fySaPKB4

no way collins should ever be held in a conversation comparing him to shaq …. never. shaq avg 3 to 3.5 blocks a game his career until the last two years or so and collins never got that close. what a joke or severe case of selective amnesia to say colins was a better defender and say maybe he just didnt get respect from refs.

doc

August 6th, 2010
12:23 am

who has the BS now comparing shaq at 37 with 23 mpg to collins most recent year of similar numbers again about 23 mpg when he was about 27. come on nire, quit being the bully. collins 4 and 2 … shaq 12 and 7. who are you guys kidding?

mike, they havent a clue in this one. no wy they can make an argument on this one without becoming pure straw themselves, no way.

niremetal

August 6th, 2010
1:29 am

Doc,

If you’re going to set up straw men and not even attempt to address what I actually said, then don’t pretend that you are responding to me. What I said was:

“Honestly, take the respect from the refs away, and Collins (who always has been a good, fundamentally sound defender) is a better defensive player than Shaq (who wasn’t a great defender in his prime) is today.”

Now, try again.

niremetal

August 6th, 2010
1:31 am

And apparently you think blocks are the only measure of good defense?

Seriously doc, just shut the f*ck up and don’t talk to me for a few weeks.

niremetal

August 6th, 2010
1:42 am

Great on-ball post defenders aren’t always guys who rack up blocks. Wes Unseld, Dennis Rodman, Bill Laimbeer, Horace Grant, Karl Malone, even Kendrick Perkins to some degree. Playing defense in the post is more about not letting your man get positioning and forcing him to either pass or take a tough shot rather than attempting to get a block.

I never said Collins was as good as Shaq or that he’s had a career that’s comparable to Shaq’s. I said that today, looking at the players without taking into consideration the influence of refs (who whistle Collins for touch fouls while letting Shaq hack away at his leisure), Collins is a better defensive player than Shaq.

In any case, I’m not even kidding doc. Your bullsh!t posts directed at me are just pissing me off at this point, and I’ve got enough to be pissed off about right now without having to deal with your crap. So I’m gonna stop talking to you, and ask that you don’t address me in your posts at all until you are willing to address what I say, and not some caricature of what I say.

Sautee

August 6th, 2010
3:19 am

Geez Matt, don’t sugracoat it. Tell us how you REALLY feel.

O'Brien

August 6th, 2010
7:57 am

nire,

Unfortunately, the refs are a huge part of the game. That’s part of the reason why JJ does not get more foul calls (combined with him not selling it).

That’s one reason why Dwight gets away with some of his play while our guys get called for the foul.

I liked the Shaq signing because he gives us more front court depth, and he helps to get the refs on our side, potentially giving us the benefit of more calls.

doc

August 6th, 2010
8:15 am

nire, i wont piece meal it for you but this is just a start:

“Also, on Collins – am I the only one who remembers that he was a very good “immovable object” defensive center not too long ago? Anyone?” or even, ““Honestly, take the respect from the refs away, and Collins (who always has been a good, fundamentally sound defender) is a better defensive player than Shaq (who wasn’t a great defender in his prime) is today.”

never was he that way, with my direct response:

“you ask if i am still in 2006 when i state shaq is the best out there for what we need and then you make a comment like collins has some game. well i looked up some stats. collins NEVER came close to meaningful stats even in his “prime”. his last season where he avg about 23 minutes a game was in 2006 i believe and shaq’s worst mpg was just last year and they dont even compare.”

you do remember your snide remark dont you about me wishing on the shaq of 2006? the shaq of 2009 would suit me fine for a back-up is all i was saying. doesnt seem to be too harmful of a statement nor untrue.

nire, you got probs then take them somewhere else rather that raising them here. i am sorry if you are frustrated in other areas of your life but here is not the best place to blow them off. i realize some do and that is my intuition talking, maybe many of us do and if it keeps us from beating the dog or saying something we regret with the boss then okay. just dont take it personal if you get personal with others and are called on it.

nire, collins has avg a foul for every 6 to 7 minutes of his career. he has never been the defender you made him out to be , much less last year or any other year, so i disagree and show you numbers. maybe he is the collins of several years ago as you suggest, just no one has seen it, woody certainly didnt see it last year or he would have played more and until he carries it on the court and proves it, you are just creating fiction. you sound like ken creating his vision of how it should be this year. it is all cool and supposed to be fun here. only, i imagine you are the first to have ever put shaq and collins in the same comparative sentence and i wasnt the only one to bring objection to it as i think sautee and mike brought it up to disagree. now where is the straw man in all that i ask?

if you contiinue to make outlandish statements nire then i, among others will call you on it, expect it from any of us. if you do it for fun or to be the devil’s advocate then dont take it personal and see where others can do the same with you. funny your best comeback is you were always mis-quoted or it is a strawman which probably is an irrelevant and specious argument to always bring up anyway. i dont think i mis-quoted you at all, just disagreed with you and said why. fight by the sword …

niremetal

August 6th, 2010
8:41 am

Seriously doc, not even reading it. Don’t talk to me.

niremetal

August 6th, 2010
8:52 am

And in case you think I’m alone in thinking that Jason Collins is a good defender:
http://www.draftexpress.com/profile/Jason-Collins-2028/

Only fools think that stats are the measure of a good defenders. I named a few above (Unseld, Rodman, Laimbeer, Grant, Malone, Perkins), guys who are great defenders but never got many blocks or steals. Bowen and Battier are examples on the perimeter. People who actually watched him play know that Collins was a good defensive center for most of his career, which is why he was the starting center for the Nets over Mutombo in the NBA Finals against the Twin Towers as a second-year player.

Collins was – and I believe still is – a very good defensive center.

doc

August 6th, 2010
8:57 am

too funny then nire. fire too hot, so you left the kitchen.

doc

August 6th, 2010
9:11 am

i dont take much credence in that draftexpress stuff when they really say he has little else to offer except six fouls a game nire. i also said that before i read it that he makes a foul every 6 or 7 minutes. yes he gets in the way but unable to do so without sending someone to the foul line. the others are great defenders and collins shouldnt be mentioned with them. isnt that a funny way to argue as well by putting someone in the company of greats to make your argument stronger. is that the opposite of straw? does anyone ever say collins is a great defender, just that if he has a strength then it is ONLY on defense. i didnt see it last year saw him fat and slow and i imagine that is not the collins they speak of in draft express, not sure the copyright on that argument. i was also the first to comment collins was put in to do a job in the playoffs without being at game speed by woody and it was unfair of woody. yeah go back and check it. just the same he is only worth fouls at 31, shaq could do the same at 38 and maybe provide a rebound or bucket in the mean time.

i think we both agree for the mle exception the hawks probably blew it. i dont have the figures and wasnt at the table but maybe they could have coaxed his pride a bit.

look i am not here to make your life bad. i am here to talk basketball as are others. again we all have valid reasons for making our statements right or wrong. did you come here to have everyone agree with you? wrong place, that is what the liars table is about.

Astro Joe

August 6th, 2010
9:19 am

Sautee, nire and OB, I think you guys are suffering from 20/20 hindsight. I think that you are forgetting how bad the Hawks were in the previous 10 years. How insignificant they were in their own city. That Celtics series ignited the casual fans passion for the Hawks for literally the first time in a decade. I think you are also forgetting the aura of the Celtics that season. They were that year’s version of the Heat (albeit older). The series was supposed to be the beginning of their coronation ceremony, pundits didn’t say “based on the regular season, it may be a close series”. No, they pretty much said “Celtics in 5 (at worse). Losing in Boston? Yeah it was bad but I don’t recall too much outrage about a first time playoff team with a bunch of youngsters losing to 3 HOF-types on the road. If the Bobcats take the Heat to a 7-game series in May, I wouldn’t expect LB to be fired. And that is a good analogy to the Hawks-Celtics series.

Sure, there is no doubt what 20/20 vision says, but let’s not ignore all of the variables that went into the decision to keep Woody AT THE TIME. Namely, that the ASG secured more revenue than ever before, the Hawks were the youngest team in the playoffs and had just ignited the city with an exciting brand of ball. (There was also an unsettled ownership situation that was much more problematic in 2008). Lastly, I think it is fair to conclude that if given a choice of a risky or cautious moves, the ASG will choose caution, inertia and sameness. They reportedly offered BK a new contract that summer, he turned THEM down. Gearon has yet to fire a Hawks GM or head coach.

I could see firing Woody after the Cavs playoff series, but after the Celtics? No way.

Astro Joe

August 6th, 2010
9:30 am

Seriously, can anyone honestly say that upon seeing Collins in a Hawks uniform for the first time last year, that you didn’t think “dang, I thought we signed one of the Collins twins, why are they both sharing one uniform”? At least, that what I was thinking. Dude could only effectively guard a single immobile player last year in the condition that he put himself.

Mike is back

August 6th, 2010
9:36 am

Doc, Dang, even after that wonderful song you sang for Nire…he/she isn’t man enough to admit defeat. Wish I were clever enough to come up with one of MannyT’s famous acronyms.

O well…keep doing yo thang…spin-doctor. heh heh

niremetal

August 6th, 2010
9:58 am

All right doc, I just read your 7:41 and as I suspected it was a load of BS.

1) Your and Mike’s depictions of what I said about Collins is a classic straw man argument. MannyT provided the link:

You commit the straw man fallacy whenever you attribute an easily refuted position to your opponent, one that the opponent wouldn’t endorse, and then proceed to attack the easily refuted position (the straw man) believing you have undermined the opponent’s actual position. If the misrepresentation is on purpose, then the straw man fallacy is caused by lying.

Blog or not blog, setting up straw men is either disingenuous, intellectually lazy, or both. That’s what you did. What I said was that Collins was a very good defender not too long ago, and that I think that he is as good a defender as Shaq today – at least if you take away the influence of the refs. I never, ever, ever came remotely close to saying that Collins was on Shaq’s level in terms of all around game. I never even said that taking into account the influence of the refs that Collins was as good a defender as Shaq. But you spun out absolutely disingenuous bullsh!t arguments:

collins NEVER came close to meaningful stats even in his “prime”.

I never talked about Collins’ stats. This is an easily refuted argument that I never made. Straw man.

no way collins should ever be held in a conversation comparing him to shaq
****
i imagine you are the first to have ever put shaq and collins in the same comparative sentence

These are misleading spins on what I actually said. I didn’t compare Collins to Shaq generally. I compared him to Shaq 1) as a defender, 2) today (not over the course of their careers as a whole), and 3) ignoring the influence of refs (which I repeatedly said was important and something that could not be ignored in reality). These sentences don’t recognize that there were significant qualifications in the sentence you keep harping on.

collins 4 and 2 … shaq 12 and 7

I never compared Collins’ scoring and rebounding to Shaq’s. Only his defense. This is an easily refuted argument that I never made. Straw man.

the others are great defenders and collins shouldnt be mentioned with them. isnt that a funny way to argue as well by putting someone in the company of greats to make your argument stronger. is that the opposite of straw?

No, and this is another straw man. I used a common method of refuting an argument – pointing out high profile counterexamples that show flaws in an argument. You relied on stats in your post to argue that Collins was not as good a defender as Shaq. I countered that not all good defenders put up good defensive stats, and provided several high-profile examples of that (without saying that Collins was on the level of those guys). I went on to give my criteria for a good defensive big man: Playing defense in the post is more about not letting your man get positioning and forcing him to either pass or take a tough shot rather than attempting to get a block. I then said that Collins was a very good defensive center – not that he was Hall-of-Fame level like Unseld/Laimbeer/Rodman/etc, but that he was “very good.”

I never, ever said that Collins was as good a defender as Unseld/Laimbeer/Rodman/etc. I never “put [him] in the company of greats.” I used the greats to counter your stats-based argument. I did not use them as a comparison to Collins. That is an easily refuted argument that I never made. Straw man. I think you know I wasn’t comparing Collins to them and just were being disingenuous.

So stop it. Address what I say, not some caricature of what I say,

O'Brien

August 6th, 2010
10:01 am

AJ,

Letting Woody’s contract expire right after the Boston series would not have been an easy decision. But fans were excited about the Hawks team, and in my opinion, I dont think letting Woody go would have made a difference to the fans.

How did we win the games in ATL against the Celtics? If I remember correctly, was there anybody who thought it was because Woody coached his tail off? His W-L record was bad, and we got blown out every game in Boston.

Ironically, we got blown out every game against Orlando this year, so history does repeat itself after all. Unfortunately, Rick does not have a crystal ball.

Plus, in every sport, GMs like to bring in their own guys anyway.

As for Collins, I am also of the opinion that Woody did not utilize him effectively last year. How-ever (in my Stephen A voice), he was way overweight last year. And that’s on him. Where is the motivation to get in game shape? Or is that Woody’s fault too?

Melvin

August 6th, 2010
10:36 am

Shaq avg 36pts and 12rebs vs the NJ Nets (Jason Collins) in the 2001 finals and named Finals MVP…

Astro Joe

August 6th, 2010
10:46 am

OB, so I guess you’re in the “team won without a coach” camp based on those comments. I guess that’s why we could afford a minimum wage coach, huh?

Explain how a coachis supposed to utilize an out-pf-shape player? How is Shanahan utilizing Hansworth up in DC?

niremetal

August 6th, 2010
10:48 am

Jason Collins wasn’t the starter yet at that point, Melvin. He was a rookie and the backup. Shaq did most of his damage against Todd MacCullough. It was the next year that he got promoted to starter, played solid on-ball D against Robinson (and sometimes Duncan), was widely viewed as more effective than Deke at manning up in the post, and began to get recognition as a defensive center.

niremetal

August 6th, 2010
10:59 am

Also Melvin – I think you meant 2002, not 2001. The threepeat years were when Shaq was in his prime and there wasn’t a soul in the NBA who could slow him down, much less stop him. Measuring Collins’ defense by how he did as a rookie against Shaq in his prime is kind of an odd standard, since not even Mourning was slowing Shaq down then (Shaq posted 40 and 11 against Mourning in their last meeting in ‘02).

drmaryb (*_*)

August 6th, 2010
11:22 am

WOW!

Boys Gone Wild – Senior Edition!

I Love this blog! It’s too early for Beer and Popcorn, but my Cafe’ and Boiled Egg is working just fine. I saw an epic battle this morning and looks like the
Infamous Straw-Man is dead! A casualty of war it seems!

Elvis said he was leaving the building and the last man standing was Doc!
I couldn’t tel who was winning, because the spit was flying so thick?
I couldn’t see.

But, I had $50 on doc from earlier this week and looks like it just doubled.

Seriously, all jokes aside: From what I see Nire, You and doc actually are in
agreement and are pretty much saying the same thing differently.
There may be some statements, “Lost in Translation” or simply put
taken out of their context which is a very common fallacy of intense
conversations.

In reality, you both agree we need a back-up Center with a defensive skill set
primarily. Shaq would have given us that in a half-court “slow down” series, but, at the expense of hurting the team on the fast breaks. Unless, he just stayed
back on offense. Unfortunately you can sub players in the flows and throws of a game, only in time-outs.

Now, we all know Collins is no Shaq, and it would be disingenuous to accuse
each other ot that with a straight face. Some facts are just that obvious.

Nire, it does seem like you are angry in general and like to argue just for the sake of argument. Hey man, it’s just a silly blog about a silly game of basketball!

For entertainment purposes only, nothing more nothing less!
Let’s just have some fun on here.. No one cares if we all agree – it’s really OK.
It’s better conversation when we don’t.

Friends?
Can’t we all just get along? – Rodney King -

O'Brien

August 6th, 2010
12:48 pm

AJ,

Would you agree that Joe Smith had a right to complain about last year? Because there were stretches in which he would contribute, but not be heard from from in the next half, or sometimes for the next game.

As for Collins, its his fault for not staying in shape. I agree there. But during the season, Woody talked about needing him for the playoffs.

So although Collins was out of shape, I think Woody could still have used him for certain stretches. But he hardly did.

Astro Joe

August 6th, 2010
2:04 pm

OB, we were talking about Collins, where did Joe Smith come from? Smith was poorly used in the 2nd half of the season. I recall watching him brick most of his shots off the front of the rim early in the season (likely due to lack of leg strength). I’m not here to argue Woody’s use of his bench (although I kind of doubt that Collins or Smith would be in tremendous demand). Woody had to go this summer, no doubt about it. But let’s not blame him for Collins being fat, Smith having no legs to start the season or the RandMo being an absolute stiff. Remember when some blamed him for Salim, Acie and Solo?

Sautee

August 6th, 2010
4:01 pm

AJ,

about this: “Sautee, nire and OB, I think you guys are suffering from 20/20 hindsight. I think that you are forgetting how bad the Hawks were in the previous 10 years.”

What does that have to do with it being oh so obvious after that series that Woodson couldn’t make an adjustment to an untied shoe?

My argument then AND now is that the Boston series was the first time we had seen Woody coach in a series – where adjustments are paramount. And he was exposed, no? In fact, if not for Joe playing out of his mind for the only “elite” game of his career, it would have been 4-2 Boston.

Fan climate be damned, if you can’t make adjustments, then you can’t make adjustments. That series was the first proof (because it doesn’t show as much in the reg. season) of Woody’s major flaw.

As O’B has said, perhaps Sund thought he was was on thin ice since the owners had stopped Knight from cutting Woody loose on 3 occasions.

Big Ray

August 6th, 2010
5:11 pm

Vava ,

“In the event that Shaq fits well in the Celtics, neither of you should come back to this blog and say that we should have signed him.”

LMBBAO @ your attempt to stave off an “I told you so” on a blog, just in case there’s reason for an argument later on. Dude…. on a blog ? You’d have better luck telling fish not to swim! :lol:

Rod from College Park

August 6th, 2010
5:28 pm

Only way to get more calls from the refs is to earn it. Shaq has earned the calls, Collins has not. No way the two players can be compared without the foul calls. Would Jordan have been as good as he was if the whistle was not blown when somebody blew on him. What about Kobe, or Wade? Jason Collins should not be compared to Shaq in any way. No comparison.

Big Ray

August 6th, 2010
6:08 pm

I hope Jason Collins returns to the form that had people talking about him a little bit back in ‘05 or thereabouts. More to the point, I hope he can provide the type of play that demands decent, regular minutes. Not necessarily 10-15 per game, mind you. But the kind of play that gets him 5-8 mpg and he actually impacts the game when he’s in it, rather than providing comedy with his flat-footed jumper.

His flummoxing Shaq in a few plays against Cleveland last year is in some ways akin to Marvin scoring 20 or more points in a game. Both were nice to see at the time, and both left you wanting more and thinking more could be had….but neither delivered.