Pump your brakes!

Hawks point guard Mike Bibby is preaching caution!

Hawks point guard Mike Bibby is preaching caution!


HAWKSVILLE - You’ve got to love Mike Bibby.

Aside from being hilarious, no player in a Hawks uniform is more likely to surprise you with what comes out of his mouth than the savvy point guard.

While most everyone else roaming the bowels of Philips Arena last night was either dazed and or confused as to what had just transpired (the Hawks’ 90-64 thrashing of the Heat in Game 1 of their first round playoff series), Bibby was already pumping the brakes.

That’s what veterans do, even after blowout wins. They provide gravity that others might not realize is needed.

Bibby surely remembers the talk in Boston last year after the Hawks were routed in Game 1. People there were proclaiming the series was over and the Celtics would sweep the Hawks.

Six games later the series was over. But it was much harder work than anyone could have imagined after Game 1.

Bibby is well aware that the Hawks need to pump the brakes today. Game 2 is Wednesday night and it’s every bit as crucial to the Hawks’ chances of winning this series as Game 1.

“This series is 0-0 as far as I’m concerned,” Bibby said. “It’s a brand new series Wednesday night.”


I stopped reading my text messages and emails midway through the third quarter. I didn’t think there was any other way people could express to me how stunned they were to see Josh Smith’s high-flying act.

My best friend, IvoryTwit” Brooks (a Seattle native and school principal in Oakland with a basketball jones like many of you here) hit me repeatedly with messages like, “Josh Smith is a #$%&! beast,” and “this is ridiculous, truly.”

And his notes were just the beginning. The onslaught came from every direction. It was hilarious reading the reactions of people watching all this stuff in HD while also seeing the reactions of the folks in the arena who were watching it live.

Like many people, Twit rarely sees the Hawks (when the Hawks play the Warriors in Oakland or one of the rare occasions when they’re on national TV. So he’s always taken aback by the Hawks’ wicked athleticism and penchant for alley oops and spectacular plays.

“Why don’t they play like this all the time?” his final text read. 

If he only knew how many times that phrase is uttered around here.


Mark Bradley has whipped up enough links and polls to make your head spin in the latest installment of Bradley’s Buzz (I was still snoring when he did all that work).

I’ve got a couple more interesting things you might want to read from our visitors from the MIA.

My man Chris Perkins caught up with Heat owner Mickey Arison and team president Pat Riley before the game, and as you might expect, they were still optimistic then.

I didn’t realize just how poorly Dwyane Wade played Sunday night until I read Mike Wallace’s story in the Miami Herald a few minutes ago. Wade had nearly half of Heat’s 19 turnovers. That’s crazy.

Ira Winderman highlighted former Hawks and now Heat assistant coach David Fizdale and the unique role he’ll play in this series going forward. Fizdale left the Hawks last summer after being one of the key figures in the development of many of the Hawks’ young players that abused the Heat last night.

Orlando is actually in “Central Florida,” but they’re in much the same predicament as their neighbors down South Beach way after Sunday’s humiliating home loss to the Andre Iguodala and the 76ers.

Orlando Sentinel columnist Mike Bianchi let the Magic have it after they blew not only home court advantage but also an 18-point lead.


Much will be made about the Hawks’ balance in this series, and rightfully so.

It was on full display in Game 1, the folks at Elias Sports made sure of it with this little statistical ditty: The Hawks got double-digit scoring from all five of their starters in their 90-64 victory over the Heat. It was the third time in Atlanta’s last eight playoff games (dating back to last year’s series against the Celtics) that Marvin Williams, Josh Smith, Joe Johnson, Al Horford and Mike Bibby each scored at least 10 points. Prior to last postseason, the Hawks didn’t produce double-digit scoring from all five of their starters in a playoff game since 1999 (Steve Smith, Dikembe Mutombo, Grant Long, Tyrone Corbin and Mookie Blaylock).

192 comments Add your comment


April 20th, 2009
1:30 pm

I totally agree with Bibby. After the clock hit triple zeros, it was time to start thinking about game 2. I’m impressed by what we did. However, if we get a hangover, I guy like Wade will take advantage of us. We have to make ANOTHER statement on Wednesday. On paper, we are by far a better team. Last night exposed that. That said, if we give that team any hope, D-Wade has the talent to exploit it and make a series of this thing.


April 20th, 2009
1:32 pm


April 20th, 2009
1:36 pm

yeah it isnt close to being over until we slam them one more time here on wednesday and win on down there. if we come into game five up 3 to 1 then i will be pleased to think we can win it in five and rest the warriors.

d wade was having his way in the first ten minutes as he scored 11 of his teams first 21 points. he was on fire. we put the water on that soon thereafter and mortality followed. i dont want to give him room to breathe or else he can turn it around quickly. he just doesnt have an elderly shaq with him this time but a done o’neal. the guy has seen his best days unless he can somehow find a good pt department to get him well and strong again. beasley is not mentally tough enough nor is there anyone appearing to be willing to ride as wing man to wade.


April 20th, 2009
1:52 pm

Hey Y’all;

The fight is on. Our Hawks threw the first punch and literally “DAZED” the Heat. They are stumbling right now looking to grab the ring ropes. They referee is looking them in the eye to see if they can continue the fight and allows the fight to continue on Wednesday. The Heat is still “DAZED” and confused. They do not know what hit them. It was the HAWKS!!!! And we are coming again. Yes we are coming again to continue the process of “SHOCKING THE WORLD!!!” And guess what? We haven’t even done the “SHUFFLE” yet. It coming y’all. The referee allowed the fight to continue and we will see you at Phillips on Wednesday to “SHOCK THE WORLD!!!!”.

LETS GO HAWKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!

This is a SECRET from a HAWK FAN. TELL EVERYBODY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

…………………….”ATLANTA HAWKS, BOOM-BYE-YEAH!!!”…………
…………………………”SHOCK THE WORLD!!!!!!!!!……………



April 20th, 2009
1:54 pm

“Prior to last postseason, the Hawks didn’t produce double-digit scoring from all five of their starters in a playoff game since 1999 (Steve Smith, Dikembe Mutombo, Grant Long, Tyrone Corbin and Mookie Blaylock).”

Prior to last postseason the Hawks hadn’t been in the postseason since 1999.


April 20th, 2009
1:55 pm

Enter your comments here


April 20th, 2009
1:57 pm

Actually, though dubious, I’ll take this in the other direction. This win was huge for the Hawks and they shouldnt forget it. One of the biggest criticisms levyied by the blog denizens is that we never really smacked around good teams and sustained the advantage. Well we did that last night. They need remember that because most of “us” thought they are the better team and they played like it from jump street tonight. That is the key. Yeah a win is a win, but “w” and “W” are the same letter- CAPITALS LETTERS HAVE A MUCH MORE PROFOUND EFFECT. Think if Smoov had just laid all those oops off the glass instead of becoming per C Webb- “Dominique Wilkins is Human Highlight film and Josh Smith is Blu Ray”.


David Smith

April 20th, 2009
2:00 pm

We definitely need to focus on the bigger picture which is to sustain our intensity in each game we play. I was a little worried when we jumped out to a 20 point lead because many times in the past i’ve seen us let teams off the hook to make a comeback and win. I’m glad Bibby is keeping these guys focused on the prize and, hope we will continue to handle our business on wednesday night. GO HAWKS!!!


April 20th, 2009
2:11 pm

Dang, why do these playoffs take so long, im gonna lose my high from last night by the time wednesday rolls around


April 20th, 2009
2:12 pm

The HAWKS have been my fav hoops team for years – VERY lean years following many above average but never great playoff years. Great to be back in the playoffs and the sky is the limit if we also learn to play on the road and continue to get Joe the ball in crunch time. Bibby, Josh, Al and Marvin are all also key contributors who are clicking at the right time. But I more than anything else much prefer this year’s bench to last and am enjoying the obvious team chemistry.


April 20th, 2009
2:15 pm


I often think about that too(Why we don’t run more) but the more I think about it, I now understand Woody’s strategy. He knows we can run but he keeps the reigns tight during the season so that we don’t wear ourselves out. Then during the playoffs, it’s all out. After all, how many running teams actually are successful in the playoffs.

Woody is distinguishing himself as a very highly reguarded coach right now. Any team looking to rebuild a program and stick with the formula the Hawks have would love to have a “stand up” no-nonsense guy like Woody. OKC, Minnesota, and Memphis come to mind.

Make no mistake about it. Woody better get a long term deal or somebody will come calling. Bank on that.



April 20th, 2009
2:26 pm


That last stat would be much more impressive if it weren’t for the fact that before last year, the Hawks hadn’t been in the postseason at all since 1999. Which kinda makes that point rather non-impressive…

Just sayin ;-)


April 20th, 2009
2:28 pm

Anyone else notice Speedy somewhat distant from the Hawks huddle last night? Did Wodson tell him he doesn’t play on using him in a major, so Speedy got the message?

Also, why wasn’t every seat packed? Ticket prices are not bad.

We need to sweep this scrub team and rest up for Cleveland. Need Larry Brown to give Woody some pointers on how to beat Cleveland (who I think is overrated and is not actually as good as people think they are).


April 20th, 2009
2:28 pm

Well, the COY votes are in. Woody finished 8th. He got robbed. Cuz, that one vote better had been you.

Still COY in my book.



April 20th, 2009
2:35 pm

Sekou: If Speedy plays more than 10 games this year, do the Hawks have to pay him?


April 20th, 2009
2:44 pm

BTW, good job, ASG…
Every other team gives out shirts with fancy little phrases or mottos.

What do you idiots give out?

20 cent towels which I used to blow my nose last night. Put some @#$%ing money into the team and stop being idiots. OMG MY SON WEARS A JOE JOHNSON JERSEY NOW. WE MUST BE A GOOD TEAM!

Da Real Real

April 20th, 2009
2:53 pm

I definitely agree with Bibby here, and the experience that we gained last year is why I think the Hawks have such an advantage during this series besides the fact that we’ve played those guys 5 times this year. We know the roles have reversed from last years playoffs with the Celtics. We know what the Celtics faced when they came here and so I think the guys know exactly what they are going to face not only in this next game but when they travel down to Miami which is why I think we can win one down there and win this thing in 5 or 6.

However, I will say this as a fan of Atlanta sports for decades now. We’ve earned that ability to be able to gloat for a couple of days after all these years of horrible Atlanta sports. Seeing the Hawks do what they did yesterday on national TV is something to be proud of, especially in the face of all the naysayers and critics.


April 20th, 2009
3:01 pm

slow thy roll. Game 1 is just that. I would expect the Heat to come out with a vengeance in Game 2, and it will be one of those grind-it-out games that we played about 75% of the time this year. Winner is a toss-up, but don’t count out D-wade. Hawks/Heat were virtual mirror images of each other, so expect a battle through game 7.


April 20th, 2009
3:09 pm

The defensive intensity last night was incredible. I’m surprised to hear it was only 19 turnovers – the Hawks were in the Heat’s jocks all night. Pressing, steals (on inbound passes, no less)…the Heat just couldn’t breathe. I guess several of them just didn’t result in posession changes.

But the best play was Horford coming from the opposite side of the key to contest what would have been a wide-open jam by Wade. Al knew he had no angle for a block and the only way to stop the freebie was to foul, so that’s what he did – hard. Wade then missed one of two FTAs. You put it in the opponents’ heads that nothing they do is going to go unchecked, and 26-point wins are what happens. Beautiful.


April 20th, 2009
3:17 pm

Great Win! 3 more and Lebron. Still like to see us go after a big man in the offseason. Oh well, gotta work with what we got………
With Joe out front, a pick from Al, and go down low with Josh our offense looks scary. I left out Marvin and Bibby from three. I also like Marvins defense. We have a good team. Is this Atlanta?


April 20th, 2009
3:18 pm


The Hawks have to pay him whether he plays or not, as per the current Collective Bargaining Agreement, unless the player announces his retirement (which Speedy obviously never did).

Big Ray

April 20th, 2009
3:24 pm


Playoff wins> COY votes all day, any day. And though he got very few votes, I’ll bet he’ll be doing a lot more smiling when it’s all said and done than some other guys who got more votes.

I thought Woody would actually get more votes, and he finished way behind even his playoff opponent, Eric Spoelstra.

To his credit, Woody is more concerned with higher things, and last night PROVED it. I bet Spoelstra doesn’t feel too good about having more votes right about now, either.

We win this matchup, then we’re going up against the COY and his crew. We’d be the underdog, and there’s an advantage in that. Our guys will be hyped. In the meantime, I’m focused on Woody and the team beating Spoelstra, Wade, and the rest of the Heat into the ground. Then we go hunting for Cavaliers.

As an aside, Woody received the same number of votes as did Phil Jackson. You know how this stuff works. It’s partially a popularity contest. And as you know, neither the Hawks nor Woodson are high on the popularity list. Some reaons for this are quite valid, but many are BS. Let Woody build his case, he’s only had a winning season for the first time. I guarantee he’ll be much closer if he maintains that winning edge next season as well, though I doubt he cares about winning that award.

As for his contract, winning round 1 goes a long way towards that. One thing at a time, is what Woody has to be thinking. And that resolve is what will take him and this team to new heights (and a new contract). You know he’s old school. Earning your way with hard work in the trenches is more satisfying than anything else. Woody wouldn’t want it any other way, I think.

Astro Joe

April 20th, 2009
4:03 pm

Good job, Bibby! I hope it sinks in, we’ve read plenty of comments this season that suggest the team is thinking properly before a game and then they get out there, they perform in a 180-degree manner. I think we should be in good mental shape for the next 2 games. If we have a mental lapse during the series, it will come first in game 4.

Stat Man

April 20th, 2009
4:31 pm

Thanks to a stretch on the Hawks star crew back in the ’80’s, I have a vast research material library.

Here’s a couple more playoff nuggets that have bit the dust and will hopefully bite the dust soon.

First, the Hawks woke up this morning leading in a Best of 7 series! The last time that happened? Try May 18th, 1988 (yep – 21 years ago). That was when they went up 3-2 on Boston before losing in 7 in the famous ‘Nique/Bird game.

Second, the monkey we really need to get off our back! When was the last time the Hawks won a best of 7 series? Try 39 years ago when they beat the Bulls.

So there you have it – one bad streak OVER and one more to take care of here in the next week and a half!

GO HAWKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!


April 20th, 2009
4:35 pm

Even though Im anti-WOODY, I will admit that the HAWKS looked good Sunday night. Did WOODY sleep at a Holiday Inn Saturday night? Now do it 3 more times, and if by chance they make it to the eastern finals, save me a seat on the BANDWAGON.

Astro Joe

April 20th, 2009
4:45 pm

Stat man. When they beat the Bulls in the 7-game series, were they in Atlanta? I ask because I have heard several talking-heads in Atlanta say that the Atlanta Hawks have NEVER won a 7-game playoff series (first round used to be best of 5).


April 20th, 2009
5:02 pm

Not to take anything away from the Hawks play, but MIA didn’t look real good. Wase carried that team to the fifth spot and it looked like it’s taken it’s toll.

Is he out of gas? He doesn’t have much help either.

The Hawks should be able to run the Heat quickly out of the playoffs.

The Cav’s will be a different challenge. It’s very nice to think that they have a chance.

I’ve been waiting for this team to mature for a long time. They may be better than all the BK haters thought.


April 20th, 2009
5:32 pm

Did anyone listen to Kenny, Charles, and Chris Webber just dismiss the Hawks at halftime, by saying that neither team is that good so lets focus on that. And they went on to show what the hawks and Heat were doing wrong. We all know they had egg on their face b/c the hawks were beating one of their glory gods by 20. If the heat were up by 20 we would have been bombarded with how great Mr. Wade is. I will rather listen to Bob Rathman and Nique before those clowns

Astro Joe

April 20th, 2009
5:49 pm

Kenny Smith definitely HATES the Hawks. No two ways about it. I don’t know if it was because BK didn’t hire him as Head Coach or because of something that happened when he was a player in the league. All I know is that he only says “we’re a long and athletic team” and that’s the closest thing to a complement that he will give the Hawks. He did show Joe a little love during the ASG HORSE competition but even then, he seemed to favor the young guys. That’s okay, I enjoyed listening to Fratello, who most definitely gives us more than a fair shake.

The Money Ball From Money Town!!

April 20th, 2009
6:21 pm

SouthAfrican09: don’t hate on the rally towel!

Last night’s crowd looked like the first Thrashers playoff game back in 2007!!


Stat Man

April 20th, 2009
6:37 pm

Astro Joe –

Yes, they were in Atlanta for the Best of 7 win over the Bulls. They moved here for the 68-69 season.

Another interesting fact is that they weren’t always best of 5. In fact, in 1983, the first round was a best of 3! (Boston beat us 2-1)


April 20th, 2009
7:30 pm

GREAT WIN! Josh played amazing but it all starts with JJ. First, thanks for not bringing “ISO JOE”. Second, at the beginning of the game I noticed JJ not settling for long jump shots but looking for shots closer to the basket and moving around which allowed for a more dynamic offense involving all their teammates. Defense was amazing but we all know this team is a great defensive team. I was glad to see how they moved the ball in offense for most of the game, that is what you need to go deep in the playoffs.

Astro, I also enjoy when Coach Fratello calls the game. The TNT halftime crew is a joke, I surf channels for those 15 minutes.

Najeh Davenpoop

April 20th, 2009
7:30 pm

“Dang, why do these playoffs take so long, im gonna lose my high from last night by the time wednesday rolls around”

You know today is 4/20 right?

Najeh Davenpoop

April 20th, 2009
7:37 pm

“BTW, good job, ASG…
Every other team gives out shirts with fancy little phrases or mottos.

What do you idiots give out?”

Last year’s “Shock the World” T-shirts were nice… until they shrunk three sizes in the laundry…

Najeh Davenpoop

April 20th, 2009
7:39 pm

“Stat man. When they beat the Bulls in the 7-game series, were they in Atlanta? I ask because I have heard several talking-heads in Atlanta say that the Atlanta Hawks have NEVER won a 7-game playoff series (first round used to be best of 5).”

Stat man is right… the talking heads I’ve heard have all said the last 7-game series win for the Hawks was in 1970.


April 20th, 2009
7:42 pm

Sekou, isn’t it a bit ironic that you know a principal named Twit?

One of Bibby’s greatest assets for this team is his perspective. Even though he had a bad series against Boston last year, I thought that it was great that he personally took on the Boston fans and took some of the focus away from the new guys. Portland could have used such a veteran ploy this past weekend.

Samuel, I will agree with Ray and say that Woody was robbed a little. I expected him to be in that Jerry Sloan territory on the COY vote. Now that Spoels finished ahead of him, I say we use that as more motivation to befuddle the Heat.

Elias Sports Bureau has too much idle time on its hands. Maybe the should have reversed the question to tell us when was the last playoff season where the Hawks played and did not have a game where all started scored in double figures.

Great start to the playoffs for the Hawks. We need to show the Heat that Sunday was no fluke, just another step to beat the heat.



April 20th, 2009
7:43 pm

I laughed when I read about Sekou’s email being filled up with folks calling him about the amazing plays of Josh Smith. I laughed because we have been seeing Josh doing his thing for 5 years, and the national media/world is now beginning to realize what a special player this guy is. They ain’t seen nothing yet from the Hawks! Like I just read, Josh would be a rookie this year if he had attended four years of college!

Amazing, maybe again not to see Miami’s newspapers killing their team in the press. These are the words being tossed around. ‘Good old fashioned butt-kicking’, ‘Heat quit’, ‘Heat were crushed’, ‘thrashed’, ‘humiliated’, Wade was ‘pouting’, ’sulking’, ‘looking at the refs for help’, ‘and his young teammates could only follow the leader’.


April 20th, 2009
7:46 pm

69-70 Hawks beat Bulls in playoffs 4-1

Now you know.

Watch Me Soar

April 20th, 2009
7:52 pm

Since everyone seems timid to say it, Then i’ll say it. The Heat are good as swept! The Hawks deserve all of the credit, not just some of it. LET’S GO HAWKS FANS, LET’S GO!

Najeh Davenpoop

April 20th, 2009
7:53 pm

In response to the article above, this is what Bibby gives the Hawks that Acie Law doesn’t. Yeah, the whole team gained valuable experience last year in the playoffs, but Bibby is eminently qualified to make a level-headed statement like that thanks to his extensive playoff experience, and he backs that up with his play more often than not.

It would be great if the Hawks could keep Bibby this offseason… I just don’t want them to reduce their ability to re-sign more important players like Joe Johnson and Al Horford by doing so.

While I’m talking about point guards… considering how useful Mario Chalmers was in fantasy for me this year (a threes, steals, and occasionally dimes machine), he was really underwhelming to watch in person. I think it was Ando who compared Rajon Rondo on last year’s Celtics to Chalmers on this year’s Heat… Rondo wasn’t a rookie last year so it’s not a fair comparison, but just in pure athleticism alone he is light years ahead of Chalmers.

Najeh Davenpoop

April 20th, 2009
7:54 pm

One more thing… would it be too soon for me to take brooms to Game 2? I was seriously considering it on the way home yesterday…


April 20th, 2009
8:12 pm

Celtics better be careful. Chicago isn’t here to play around. Celts lose game 2 with all their injuries, they won’t even make it out of roound one.


April 20th, 2009
8:26 pm

Any way an underappreciated, underpaid, cheapskate teacher can get a playoff ticket for Wed.


Najeh Davenpoop

April 20th, 2009
8:53 pm

I just saw Tyrus Thomas hit an 18-foot jumpshot… this after hitting what would be the game-winning shot in Game 1.

If Josh Smith could make that shot consistently… man, he would be an All Star. I’d love to see him work on that this offseason.

Samuel, 400-level tickets are only 12 bucks. From what I know some are still available.


April 20th, 2009
9:00 pm

I hate that I didn’t get a chance to blog after last nights IMPRESSIVE WIN!!!!!
It’s only one game, but the defensive intensity was outstanding!!! The two key plays to me, where Bibby making a block on Chalmers early in the 1st, along with JJ picking Wade and the HAWKS running all over the places for the ball!! HUGH PLAYS ALL AROUND!!!

KEYS to the GAME:

1) Miami’s rookies were overwelmed by the moment
2) Hawks scored most of their points off turnovers
3) Miami had 19 turnovers and shot 17.4% from 3

Miami really can’t play any worse. The Hawks got some many turnovers that it’s hard to tell how their half court offensive went, but overall I think it went OK. I think the HAWKS are going to have to keep running good half court offensive and make open 3s. Miami is going to score better so the HAWKS are going to have to keep making shots. Smith was hugh on both ends of the court and that will have to continue. I like the defensive concept on Wade, the HAWKS shouldn’t stop even if he starts to heat-up. It looked to me that Wade tired himself out early, then started to turn the ball over and never recovered. (that’s not going to happen Wed!)



Mike in Valdosta

April 20th, 2009
9:17 pm

Awesome game. Still need to keep Josh away from that 3 point line. But those oops were amazing.


April 20th, 2009
9:18 pm



April 20th, 2009
9:22 pm

thanks Naj. I assumed the game was sold out.
Also, that was cute. I guess I have officially arrived. Some loser stole my identity.


Big Ray

April 20th, 2009
9:26 pm

Man, these Bulls are serious about taking Boston down. Derrick Rose is out there blocking shots along with Thomas and Noah. Youch.

Amazing how not-awesome these Celts are without KG.

I wonder how that makes Mr. Paul “I believe I’m the best in the NBA” Pierce feel?


April 20th, 2009
9:30 pm

Just getting a chance to post since attending the game last nite. No need recap since other done such a good job. Enjoying chatting it up with Doc, Ando, MannyT and Jhan. Man, it felt refreshing to see the Hawks dismantle another team in the playoffs. These young guys are growing up fast, right before our eyes. I like how we attack the paint on offense instead of settling for jumpshots. The Hawks defense was suffocating and they did a great job sharing the ball on offense. Miami could not keep up with the Hawks speed. Their young guys (Beasley, Mario) was not ready for the big lights of the playoffs. Which bring me to my last point. What happen to the Heat fans (Realty, Keepin it Real) that was posting on here prior to last nite game? Have they giving up hope already. Also, I notice the JSmoove bashing has disappeared as well…heh,heh