Jeff Teague not voted to All-Star rookie team. Woody: “That’s because of me”

Woody, Teague and Sund (photo via i.cdn.turner.com)

Woody, Teague and Sund (photo via i.cdn.turner.com)

San AntonioJeff Teague didn’t make the roster for the Rookie Challenge game on All-Star weekend. It’s not surprising: The Hawks drafted Teague 19th overall draft , and the rookie team (voted on by NBA assistant coaches) usually features guys playing big minutes for bad-to-middling teams. And that’s how it is this season: of the nine players on the rookie team, only San Antonio’s DeJuan Blair is playing a major role for a team aiming for a serious postseason run (he’s another one of those second-round steals for the Spurs even if his bad knees only hold up for a couple more seasons).

So when Woody says Teague didn’t make the team “because of me” (calm down, haters), what he means is he hasn’t played Teague the kind of minutes it takes to get more shine. That’s how it’s going to be for Teague this year as long as Bibby and Crawford are healthy. The Hawks are thinking big, and in this situation 99 percent of rookies just have to get in where they fit in.

Teague, who has said he understands the deal even if he gets frustrated sometimes, didn’t have much to say today about not being voted to the rookie team. Asked if he had hoped to make it, he shook his head. Asked if he’s disappointed, he said: “I don’t give a (blanK) about that.”

Just in case Teague does care, Woody planned to address the issue with his rookie: “I will sit him down later and talk to him, because that’s no knock against him. He’s going to be a player in this league.”

61 comments Add your comment

tbhawksfan

January 27th, 2010
2:16 pm

(calm down, haters), Not nice to call people names. Bad expression.

How do you become a hater ?

Lacsho

January 27th, 2010
2:18 pm

The only thing I can say is WoW. Hopefully he’ll get enough playing time to make the sophmore team next year. Hmmmmm, in the past Woody went out of his way to make sure JJ got in (just a thought).

RA

January 27th, 2010
2:21 pm

Teague’s earned more playing time than he’s getting, but the sad truth of the matter is that the Hawks ARE in a race not just for the division, but maybe even for the second seed as well. There’s just not as much opportunity for a rookie to take his lumps because EVERY game counts. It’s not fair, but there it is.

Lacsho

January 27th, 2010
2:21 pm

Yeah, the hater comment was slighty over the top.

Michael Cunningham

January 27th, 2010
2:24 pm

@tbhawks: no name calling. it’s all in fun. this ain’t the evil kind of hate. but to become a hater, one must hate on something or someone. and i’ve noticed there’s lots of Woody haters around, particularly when it comes to Teague. but then that might be the consequence of hating on Bibby.

@lascho: why “wow”? all Woody means is Teague’s role on this team prevents him from getting pub. it’s just not his time, not on this team. soph team is possible, though.

tbhawksfan

January 27th, 2010
2:24 pm

I like Woodson’s honesty and courage. Don’t know why he can’t give Teague a few more minutes during non-crunch time. Teague’s development is necessary and the need to know if he really has potential is very important.

The coach has a role in the future as well as the present. i don’t think a coach should only have a vision of now. Woodson should not run the team as if he were on an expiring contract. He should run it in a way that will most benefit the team.

The history of a team isn’t written in a year and good teams are teams that stay good; and the coaches stay. A mediocre coach coaching to a one year contract is an insult to the team.

Win now, win tomorrow; that should be a coaches philosophy and scheme. If he’s more concerned with his contract situation than the team, he should go. A team isn’t a one year deal.

A Hawks Fan

January 27th, 2010
2:24 pm

Man, tbhawksfan and Lacscho, you guys are sensitive. Thanks for the news MC

Gilley

January 27th, 2010
2:25 pm

Im screaminggggg at Teague saying, ‘I don’t give a (blank) about that’ LOL!!!!!

atlfan32yrs

January 27th, 2010
2:25 pm

Thats a good thing that teague doesnt get big min. It means we have a darn good squad. he will get his shine on soon. I remember starting a lot of rookies over the past 9 yrs. whewwwww! glad thats over! Go Hawks!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!big big game tonight.

Michael Cunningham

January 27th, 2010
2:26 pm

@Lascho: you can hate on me for the hater line. i can take it.

atlfan32yrs

January 27th, 2010
2:26 pm

Enter your comments here

Louisiana Connection

January 27th, 2010
2:26 pm

No, MC’s comment isn’t over the top, because I can gar-ran-tee there will those who will come out and crucify Woody for this. Instead of understanding the reasons why (the success of the team thus far limiting minutes for JT and others), some people will only think Woody has a vendetta on “Bug” similar to what they thought was in place for Salim and Acie.

Just watch…

NDiiBaBii

January 27th, 2010
2:26 pm

I’m sure whenever Teague is allowed a substantial amount of playing time he will deliver, he has loads of potential.

atlfan32yrs

January 27th, 2010
2:28 pm

SPEAKING OF TEAGUE. HE ACTUALLY MADE A JUMPER MON NIGHT. THAT IS HONESTLY THE THIRD ONE I SEEN HIM MAKE ALL SEASON.

MannyT

January 27th, 2010
2:31 pm

@Lacsho…Woody needed JJ, so he went to bat for him. Woody does not need Teague yet, so he went out of his way to put the focus on himself. I get it…more a reflection of Woody driving for wins now at the end of his contract, than developing a guy that has talent, but his time is down the road, not now. It’s like that, and that’s the way it is.

No the hater thing was not over the top. Some of y’all are so sensitive. If it doesn’t apply, you don’t have to cry!

All that said, I wish Teague did get a regular 5 mins in the 2nd quarter. After that, it should be about performance.

ISOWE

Michael Cunningham

January 27th, 2010
2:32 pm

@tbhawks: you are right, there is a balance between doing what’s best now vs. what’s best for the future. but i think it’s a big leap to say Teague isn’t playing more minutes because Woody is worried about his contract (and also a leap to say not playing Teague more now will for sure hurts the team’s future). what’s happening with the Hawks isn’t all that unusual. when a team is looking to make a big playoffs run rather than simply make the playoffs, young players often have to wait their turn. this isn’t a radical approach by Woody.

Freaknick

January 27th, 2010
2:35 pm

This isn’t “WOW” worthy or “controversial” or anything; it’s simply a smart, well-timed move by a coach who wants to keep his young talent’s mind right. Look at the rookies on the All-Rookie team. Jennings, Evans, Curry. What do they all have? Confidence. If Teague can’t get that through extended minutes, then a vote of confidence from the Boss is the next best thing.

Astro Joe

January 27th, 2010
2:37 pm

It is nice for Woody to say that it is his fault but let’s be honest. The ASG rookie team is only going to have 2-3 PGs and Teague was not going to get the same PT as guys like Johnny Flynn, Brandon Jennings, Stephen Curry or Tyreke Evans (to name a few). I just read on ESPN that Ty Lawson didn’t make the rookie squad either. Again, only so many PGs were selected. By the way, the Sophomore team is f’ing loaded and will likely win the game by 20+ points anyway.

Astro Joe

January 27th, 2010
2:41 pm

MannyT, but Woody “taking the bullet” for Teague is also consistent with his leadership style. He deflects any possible conversation regarding “Teague wasn’t worthy” by standing out front and saying “my bad… shoot me instead”.

David

January 27th, 2010
2:44 pm

Haters want to hate…Lovers want to love…I dont want…None of the above….

O'Brien

January 27th, 2010
2:45 pm

MC,

I appreciate Woody telling it like it is, and I hope Teague appreciates the fact that Woody kept it real with him. And for what its worth, even Ty Lawson sisnt make it.

Although I think Teague is deserving of more time (especially early in the game), there is just no room for him to get the kind of minutes needed to make the impact (not with JJ, Crawford, and Bibby) that would allow him to make the all-star rookie team.

That being said, why would next year be any different? If JJ resigns, we will have all our guards back, and if they are healthy, I dont think Woody will give Teague any more minutes next year either.

Gilley

January 27th, 2010
2:47 pm

Ok if Teague did play 15-20 minutes a game, the Hawks would still be winning In my opinion. Woody just doesn’t trust rookies and won’t give them a chance because he has veterans. But when Bibby struggles, he still plays him?! So I don’t believe in the excuse. He simply doesn’t make time for his bench and overworks his starters. That’s why we have lost a lot of games in the 4th. Thank GOD for Jamal Crawford!

mountain_jim

January 27th, 2010
2:49 pm

You are doing a great job, Michael Cunningham.

One suggestion – figure out how to get your sub-level comments to show with your name in blue – like other AJC writers get within their blogs – so that your comments stand out and you can’t be impersonated.

GeeMack

January 27th, 2010
2:50 pm

Michael Cunningham

Nothing wrong with that “hater line”. It struck a cord because our bloggers thinks a coach with a winning record should be fired because he not playing a rookie pg more than 10 mpg. Keep up the good work. It’s good to hear rational thinking from someone on the inside.

tbhawksfan

January 27th, 2010
2:51 pm

Thanks David, that’s a very intelligent post.

Westurd

January 27th, 2010
2:53 pm

Teagues going to see the playoffs and that experience trumps the ASG by far…….phhhleeease

Lacsho

January 27th, 2010
2:53 pm

MC, its all good. I don’t have the time to hate on people. That’s to much energy.

Hater: to dislike intensely or passionately; feel extreme aversion for or extreme hostility toward;

Rufus1

January 27th, 2010
2:55 pm

MC,

Its starting to look alot like ACIE LAW…EEEEEvery gaaame I waaatch.(sing it with me)

We have needed a PG evey year Coach has been in ATL. This is the 2nd one we drafted, under a 2nd GM. When is he going to get playing time…we will still be a veteran team next year.

We just need to trade Teague for a Vet PG or a shot blocking big man.
(Kyle Lowry or Javele Mcghee)

tjhook

January 27th, 2010
2:57 pm

Teague needs to start getting minutes. Woodson could play Teague for significant stretches for a week and he can make a determination about whether he has the wherewithal to contribute regularly to the team. What’s three games when you’re talking about playing 82? If Bibby gets hurt (real possibility), wouldn’t it be comfortable for the other starters to know what plays Teague looks to create in offensive sets. Being comfortable on the court is very important, especially when you have to manage possessions in close games

tbhawksfan

January 27th, 2010
2:57 pm

How is it that some coaches can take their late twenties or second round draft picks and get meaningful contributions from them? It seems it’s always the same teams that turn those picks into players instead of token minutes and excuses….er reasons.

We’re 10 deep playing 7, token minutes aside. If Woodson would put his players in a position to succeed we wouldn’t be talking about iso Joe or Smoove taking long jumpers or guards not feeding bigs or talented rooks not developing or not having an offensive scheme or Woody’s eye-brows…..

MannyT

January 27th, 2010
3:04 pm

@Astro…agreed. Woody is usually good about standing up for his players as long as it didn’t involve getting a T during the early years ;-)

I do think his focus is more win now than look at the long term. It is a major part of coaching. If you don’t win now, you often don’t get a long term. Also, his deal is up and JJ’s deal is up at the end of the season. You don’t know what might happen. Most folks seem to have more urgency in their contract year. A few days ago–might be 50 blogs back by now ;-) MC had the quote from Woody talking about the need to focus on winning now.

It is the nature of the business.

@MountainJim…that gray box validates MC as real. Unless you are a hacker, I think you have to be on the AJC side of things to get your comments in gray. I’m not sure, but those blue link comments may be automatically generated.

ISOWE

David

January 27th, 2010
3:04 pm

It is from Dave Chappelle’s show, but it’s better than your crying over a “hater” line in his article. Woody is doing what it takes to win games. Big deal he isn’t playing the rookie much. Me personally, if the hawks were losing I would be upset if they didn’t put him in but, since that isn’t the case keep things the way they are. Hopefully, Teague will humble himself and realize he needs to work in many things and he will get more minutes.

Astro Joe

January 27th, 2010
3:05 pm

If Woodson would put his players in a position to succeed, then maybe we could have 3 viable All-Stars, lead the division at the half-way mark, be amongst the top scoring teams in the conference and be prominently featured on virtually every basketball-related website/media.

tjhook

January 27th, 2010
3:06 pm

more importantly, let’s talk about how Woodson has not developed Marvin Williams. Marvin’s definition of an aggressive offensive attack is to shoot a jumper from deep on the move. How about learning an up-and-under move, Marvin? “Old-School” Woodson should send Williams home with DVD of old scorers like Alex English, Adrian Dantley, and Bernard King. They were finesse players, but they understood the imporantance of banging to create separation and good shots from far and near the basket.

Hater

January 27th, 2010
3:06 pm

Nice comment by Woody, actually. Trying to help keep Teague’s confidence up. (I have met Teague and spoken with him and he seems like a real good guy.) Woody seems to have taken Teague under his wing and actually likes him, unlike Acie and Salim previously.

BUT Teague just is not that good (at least as a rookie). Watch him play–turnovers, blocked shots and misses, oh my! If he got a lot more minutes, he still would not make rook team–and the Hawks would have some more losses.

Ramon

January 27th, 2010
3:16 pm

Gilley, when Bibby struggles, he still doesn’t turn the ball over, and still doesn’t pick up 3 fouls in 8 minutes. Teague is good but isn’t close to being as good of a floor general as Bibby is with the ball.

tbhawksfan

January 27th, 2010
3:17 pm

Hater and cryer…Might cry, not about the Hawks or sports though. The thing I don’t like about the hater line is; It’s used to categorize someone who is making an argument that someone else doesn’t agree with. That’s stimatizing which creates another idea that deflects people’s attention from the argument of the first person.

Like; you’re a Woody hater, so anything you say that can be viewed as negative is simply because you’re a hater; therefore you’re arguments have no validity.

More interesting to debate than stigmatize.

Hawk Str8Talk

January 27th, 2010
3:18 pm

I’m not worried about Teague’s All Star Weekend. I’m worried that we’re one injury away from having to make our team play an ‘unprepared for any amount of minutes’ Teague and that’s all I’m going to talk about with regard to Teague. Whether it’s rest for our other 3 guards or an attempt to get better perimeter defense or more pace in the transition game, I think Teague’s role is there for the taking now. That is a different role than we want for Teague ultimately, but right now – I’m just glad that Woodson has publicly acknowledged what we all knew coming into this season (and that he said wasn’t going to be the case in the preseason) and that’s that Teague has no role for this team. Which brings me to the biggest point – which is we need a backup point guard. My push for Teague to play goes away as soon as that happens.

phar71

January 27th, 2010
3:25 pm

Big game tonight, hope the Hawks come out with the energy that played with in the 2nd qt on Monday night.

osama

January 27th, 2010
3:31 pm

As the season has progressed and the team has kept winning, Woodson has been using the bench less & less. In the beginning, he was using damn near everybody for whatever reason. Now it seems like he only goes deeper than 6-7 when his starters get dog tired or someone gets hurt. It not just Teague that isn’t getting PT, it’s Mo Evans, Zaza, Joe Smith, et. al. How can u not play a guy like ‘Rio who gives nothing but effort & energy, is disruptive on defense & snatches Off Rebs like a human vacuum?! As the season goes on–esp. now, Woodson should be using his bench more, not less.

Doug

January 27th, 2010
3:36 pm

Anyone who looks at Teague and sees ANY similaarity to Acie Law is clueless…and anyone who thinks he is “not that good” is equally clueless. He is going to be exceptional in this league and everyone that matters is aware of his skill set and talent

mac

January 27th, 2010
3:37 pm

Wasn’t the hawks the first NBA team this year to reach 20 wins by double digits? And the coach can’t find time for Teague, but will play garbage like Bibby and Marvin Williams major minutes? It looks like the GM should find time to get a REAL nba coach.

Daniel

January 27th, 2010
3:42 pm

Michael- great blog. Good information, strong opinions, excellent stuff.

I will take you to task on your hater comment though. Not because it isn’t true or an over the top thing to say, but because you actually expect the haters to have read the article, to give pause to think, to put aside an agenda. Sorry man, welcome to our pain.

As you are probably aware, many of the same posts about, It’s Woody’s fault, Acie woulda been an AllStar, the sky is falling (or for Rod, Marvin is falling!) were posted based off the headline.

For the rest of us, THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU, for saying it, and welcome to the wall that we all bang our head against.

Daniel

January 27th, 2010
3:45 pm

tbhawksfan- people who constantly see fault in Woodson, always post the same opinions, see everything, even issues that are completely unrelated in terms of their agenda that Woodson is at fault: are indeed haters and yes, therefore their opinions have significantly less merit.

Daniel

January 27th, 2010
3:49 pm

Gee and Ramon- nicely put.

rufus1- Say what? I guess you don’t think a lot of Teague’s potential then.

Lacsho

January 27th, 2010
4:02 pm

Daniel your pain, are you serious. SMH the main person who has no clue.

Lacsho

January 27th, 2010
4:04 pm

Oh I forgot, you know everything b/c you sit right behind the bench.

Lacsho

January 27th, 2010
4:05 pm

Oh I forgot you know everything b/c you have season tickets and you sit behind the bench. (how many times have we herd that line)

JerryWest

January 27th, 2010
4:38 pm

GeeMack

January 27th, 2010
4:48 pm

tbhawksfan

It one thing to have a valid argument concerning improvements for the team. It’s another when the fans attack a coach for winning and focusing on the areas that lack the most.

Most of the complaints about Woody are concerning the offense, and in some cases they are justifiable. However the team is 3rd in the league in scoring, but if someone went off this blog they would think the team was dead last.

The area this team needs the most improvementis defense, and that’s where Woody has focused his attention….defense and rebounding. If we do those thing we can score with anybody regardless of the offensive system.