In spite of all our sardonic and sarcastic comments, the fact is that as soon as League approval comes through, we can’t say that the Hawks stood pat at the trade deadline. Even if you feel that change was needed just for the sake of change, the reality is that you have to ask: is Sund’s move good, bad, or neither?
Some fans are already losing their collective minds at the idea of giving up Jordan Crawford (not to mention a first round draft pick). Was it necessary to give all this up for a veteran point guard and a young big who seems to be a journeyman early in his career? What about that draft pick (and Jordan Crawford)? Somewhere, Steve Belkin is shaking his head. Or maybe he’s just counting his millions, I don’t know. Like most things, it will be some time before this move is proven to be a good or bad one. In the meantime, does it help the Hawks down the last stretch of the season and in the playoffs?
New Parts, Old Parts
Kirk Hinrich figures to be the new starter in Atlanta, and he brings two things to the table: toughness and smart play. He’s got quite the work ethic and is a teammate above all else. Whether you like him or not, he tries to play the game the right way, and isn’t selfish by nature. How will this move go over with his new teammates? Again, time will tell. But chances are, Hinrich won’t contribute to any problems from a negative standpoint. However, it may be interesting the first time he ignores Smith standing around on the wing, or tells him to pass the ball to him, instead of running the break himself. Then again, Hinrich’s speed and propensity for pushing the ball may eliminate the fast break problem. What about Joe, or Jamal? Is either guy going to have an issue with a different point man taking up ball-handling duties? Of course, Jamal and Kirk have played together before under different circumstances.
Now, here’s the other effect on the acquisition of Hinrich – it all but proves the Hawks think more of Teague than they did Jordan Crawford. Now what might that also mean? It means that Larry Drew has to play Teague more. No way do the Hawks see Kirk Hinrich as a long term solution, and Teague is all there is left at the position. Either Drew plays Teague enough to prove the kid can’t (or can) eventually be the guy for the Hawks, or he could find himself in a similar position as Mike Woodson did. It’s not like he could be all that far from it to begin with, seeing as how the team does not appear to be listening to him much right now. Don’t believe that? Just keep checking out the post-game quotes from Drew. One after the other, they make him sound less and less like he has the team’s ear. Would a new point guard change that? What do YOU think?
Meanwhile, how does Hilton Armstrong figure into Atlanta’s big man rotation? The fifth year center/power forward hasn’t seen much time with the Wizards, due in large part to the attention (deservedly so) given to big men Blatche and McGee. But how much of it is Armstrong’s own game? It’s never good when your young career is mostly noted for how many different cities you’ve lived in, but not everybody finds a home right away. Armstrong could turn out to be little more than another trade pawn, or he could make us forget about Josh Powell and Etan Thomas. We’ll just have to see. Considering how things have gone for him this season, Armstrong would probably just be happy if he could keep the same 10 mpg that he got in Washington. But if I’m the Hawks, I hope he yearns for more.
Shows over folks?
In all likelihood, this will be it for the Hawks until the offseason. While it’s really too early to talk about any offseason stuff, don’t these moves indicate that the Hawks will or at least need to do some re-tooling this summer? What was interesting was the suggestion that other players were shopped while the Hawks were doing their thing. While Marvin Williams has shown up in a rumor or two, names like Jamal Crawford and Josh Smith have been far less prevalent. Sund has already said that the team will be judged on what it does for the remainder of this season, plus the postseason. If Sund is true to his word, then this team will most likely see more changes – possibly more dramatic ones – this offseason, unless there is a better postseason (or at least better evidence of some positive gain) result. That’s not to say the Hawks absolutely must make it out of the second round, which will be a tough thing to do still. But they certainly would provoke change by another second round flameout of apocalyptic proportions, such as has been the case the last two years. The performance of some guys on this roster may determine whether they’re staying or going when it’s all over, and the Larry O’Brien trophy has been handed out.
So what do you think:
1) Was this a good move overall, a move with an eye towards the future?
2) Did the Hawks give up too much?
3) Does Teague not get a renewed/refreshed chance at proving himself?
4) What about Pape Sy? Just kidding…
By Big Ray, Hawks Fan Nest