Ilgauskas gets release from Wizards, Hawks make pitch

Hawks hope to convince Big Z to leave Cleveland behind. (giantbomb.com)

Hawks hope to convince Big Z to leave Cleveland behind. (giantbomb.com)

The Wizards and center Zydrunas Ilgauskas completed a buyout agreement this morning and the Hawks have already made their pitch for the 7-foot-3 center to join them instead of returning to the Cavaliers.

“Once he clears waivers and becomes a free agent (on Monday), hopefully he will consider us,” Hawks general manager Rick Sund said today. “We talked to his agent. He knows we are interested, as are a couple other teams.”

Hawks coach Mike Woodson and some key players said Ilgauskas would be a great fit.

“He’d bring ‘veteranship,’” Woodson said. “And he can still play. He’s a big presence on the block, he can make shots, he can make free throws, he can rebound and he can block shots. ”

Hawks forward Joe Smith said he plans to contact Ilgauskas, his teammate during Smith’s two stints in Cleveland during the 2007-08 and 2008-09 seasons.

“I will try to reach out to him and see what he’s thinking,” Smith said. “I hope his mind is not made up.”

It is widely assumed Ilgauskas will return to the Cavaliers, who drafted him in 1997. He has said his “heart is in Cleveland” but his agent said Ilgauskas will consider signing with the Hawks and will take his time with the decision.

Dallas, Denver, and Utah also are expected to recruit Ilgauskas. The Cavs would have to wait 30 days after they traded Ilgauskas (March 19) to re-sign him while any other team can sign him after he clears waivers on Monday at 2 p.m. No team in the league has the necessary salary-cap space to claim Ilgauskas off waivers.

In order to become a free agent and join a contender, Ilgauskas gave back $1.5 million of the prorated portion of his $11.5 million salary due, according to the Washington Post. The Hawks have both their mid-level and bi-annual salary-cap exceptions available but it’s not expected that Ilgauskas’ prorated salary will be large enough to need them. That puts the Hawks and his other suitors on roughly the same level with salary offers.

Ilgauskas’ motivations aren’t clear beyond his desire to play for a team capable of making a deep playoff run. If he’s looking for playing time the Hawks and Jazz appear to offer him the best opportunity for minutes among the teams reported to be interested.

Hawks forward Josh Smith said Ilgauskas would play a big role for the Hawks.

“I will try to get his number from Joe and give him a call and tell him how much we want him here,” Smith said.

“We need a guy like that,” said Hawks All-Star center Al Horford. “I hope our people can make that happen because he would be a big key for us.”

Ilgauskas would add three things the Hawks can use: size, shooting and playoff experience (64 games).

“He’s a guy that is good with shooting on the pick-and-pop,” Horford said. “He’s a big body. We already have some of those but you need as many as you can get for the playoffs, especially an experienced guy like that.”

Ilgauskas, 34, had foot problems early in his career but played in 73 or more games in each season from 2002-08. He played in 65 games last season and 53 this season, when he was relegated to a backup role behind Shaquille O’Neal.

“He’s just as healthy as anyone else,” Joe Smith said. “He didn’t have any problems in both years I was with him.”

The Hawks likely will try to sell Ilgauskas on playing time in their power rotation. In Cleveland he was playing a career-low 20.5 minutes per game in a frontcourt that included O’Neal, Anderson Varejao and J.J. Hickson. Now the Cavaliers also have power forward Antawn Jamison, who was acquired from Washington in the three-team trade that included Ilgauskas.

Ilgauskas would stand to get significant minutes in the Hawks’ power rotation. Jason Collins, the only 7-footer on the roster, has played sparingly. Zaza Pachulia (6-11), the primary reserve at center, has struggled lately. Horford (6-10), the starter at center, could play power forward alongside Ilgauskas with Josh Smith at small forward, a position he played early in his career.

“I’m down for whatever position they want me to play,” Josh Smith said. “If it means going big for matchups, that’s cool.”

The only true center playing significant minutes behind Utah’s Mehmet Okur is third-year player Kyrylo Fesenko. The Nuggets start Nene at center with defensive specialist Chris Andersen backing him up. The Mavericks recently acquired center Brendan Haywood to back up longtime starter Erick Dampier, who is out with a hand injury.

The Cavaliers, who lead the Eastern Conference, appear to have the best shot at the Finals among the teams pursuing Ilgauskas. The Hawks are seven games behind Cleveland in fourth place and could try to sell Ilgauskas on being the player to help them reach the next level in the playoffs.

“We are playing well,” Joe Smith said. “We’ve got just as good of a shot at the Finals as anyone.”

The Hawks do not plan to pursue veteran guard Larry Hughes, who recently was waived by the Sacramento Kings. It is believed the Hawks aren’t inclined to use their 14th roster spot for a perimeter player, which also means Mike James wouldn’t be considered after he gets an expected buyout from the Wizards.

The Hawks also are not expected to pursue 7-foot center Mikki Moore, a free agent who is looking to get back into the league after heel surgery in December.

MC

206 comments Add your comment

dap01

February 25th, 2010
11:32 am

MC: What is the best offer that the Hawks can offer Big Z? What can they do to set themselves apart from the other suitors? Can and will they offer more than the others?

SOUTHERN HAWKS FAN

February 25th, 2010
11:35 am

do you see the hawks really going after him or just a token offer, and do you really believe its not a done deal that he heads back to cle

D21

February 25th, 2010
11:36 am

Hi Michael,

maybe you should add the fact that between these teams, ATL is the only one with its full MLE available (even if Big Z won’t look at the money first).

BONE

February 25th, 2010
11:36 am

He would be a huge upgrade over PaFOOLia

jokurone

February 25th, 2010
11:37 am

Definately need the Big Z and I don’t mean ZAZA Get him and we go all the way?

dap01

February 25th, 2010
11:42 am

ZaZa has lost it. As of now, he is a wasted $5.0 million each year and he is definitely not the backup center that we need.

This team needs a defensive minded big man or an offensive minded one that can step out and hit a jumper.

darrell starks

February 25th, 2010
11:53 am

Tell zaza 2 call him now.
GO HAWKS!!!!!!!!

darrell starks

February 25th, 2010
11:55 am

Rick sund tell biz z if he come 2 the hawks he will starte day 1, and tell mr. woody if he dont starte big z he will be fired.
GO HAWKS!!!!!!

Ted M

February 25th, 2010
11:55 am

Question…Is the prorated league minimum the most any team can offer Z?

Hoops

February 25th, 2010
12:03 pm

This is a no brainer for the Hawks! Offer him a two year deal now!!!

SWATlantadolfan

February 25th, 2010
12:10 pm

You guys leave ZaZa alone, he and Z can play together, were going to need both of them if we are going to get past Cleveland or Orlando

Brian

February 25th, 2010
12:11 pm

How is he gonna find minutes on the Cavs? They already cut down what he had been averaging the past few seasons and keep bringing other players into the front court. He would help out the Hawks a lot.

Gilley

February 25th, 2010
12:11 pm

I will remain optimistic as much as possible…..he will be a great addition if used effectively (Wont hold my breath) but that’s if he even signs. I think him even considering other teams is a ploy by his agent so it won’t seem like there was a pre-arraigned deal. But if he is not signed by March 1 he can’t be on the playoff roster and the Cavs have to wait 30 days? So what would be the point right? I am confused. Someone please expound.

Ree Roe

February 25th, 2010
12:13 pm

MC,

If we don’t get Z are there any other players the Hawks are likely to go after?

-REEfried Roe!!!

Marcus

February 25th, 2010
12:15 pm

From Ilgauskas perspective, what compelling reason is there for him to go anywhere but back to CLE?

He knows the system, he knows his role, and arguably they have the best chance be the Eastern Conf. rep in this years’ finals. Money apparently isn’t a big factor, as he just gave 1.5 mil back to WSH.

darrell starks

February 25th, 2010
12:17 pm

Marvin is horrible he should not be starting, maybe if the hawks bring marvin of the bench it will bring his confidence back.
GO HAWKS!!!!!!!!!!!!

Gilley

February 25th, 2010
12:18 pm

@Marcus will he even get to play in the playoffs though? They must wait 30 days to sign him and players must be signed with their teams by March 1st to be on playoff roster so I heard

Stirg d'Nahsif

February 25th, 2010
12:19 pm

Go get ‘im, Hawks!

Start: Bibby, Iso-Joe, J-Smoove, Al Horford and Big-Z.
Off bench: Teague, Crossover Crawford, Marvin Wiliams, Joe Smith, ZaZa

Finally, everybody is playing their natural position.

Stirg d'Nahsif

February 25th, 2010
12:24 pm

Gilley, the NBA made an exception to that rule. They announced that they will not interfere with the transaction and that he could be eligible to make playoffs. Talk about monopoly, dude. Why don’t they just hand the Cavs the championship?

Traceman

February 25th, 2010
12:25 pm

It is a no brainer for the Hawks to go after Big Z and they should use all of their available resources to go after him. I’m not sure exactly what they have available due to conflicting reports but I think they have the full MLE ($5.8M) available.

I don’t know if salary cap exceptions have to be prorated but if they do, the Hawks should offer a prorated portion of the full MLE to Big Z. The season is 68% gone and 32% of $5.8M is $1.86M. According to Hoopshype, we are sitting at $65.876M in salary right now. The luxury tax threshold per Larry Coon’s site is $69.920M. If those numbers are correct, we can spend a little over $4M and not exceed the luxury tax. I hope the ASG is willing to spend up to that amount to get Big Z.

darrell starks

February 25th, 2010
12:26 pm

MARCUS in cle BIG Z wont starte thats why he wont go back, and if BIG Z come 2 the hawks he starte day 1.
GO HAWKS!!!!!!!

Brian

February 25th, 2010
12:28 pm

You hit the nail on the head Stirg. That sounds like a plan. Send big Randolph Morris walking and Mario West off the roster and that will make it happen.

Ree Roe

February 25th, 2010
12:30 pm

@ Stirg, why would you want Josh to be our 3? If he’s our small forward, that means he’ll handle the ball alot more & he’ll set up on the perimeter. Josh is more effective in the post working alongside Al. If he’s out on the wing he’ll probably start taking more jumpshots (which is not what we want). Josh is our starting PF & Al is our C. Z would be a backup here.

-REElated to Roe!!!

darrell starks

February 25th, 2010
12:30 pm

STARTER BIBBY, JOE, JOSH, HORFORD, BIG Z
BENCH JAMAL, MOE, MARVIN, JOE SMITH, ZAZA
RESERVE TEAGUE, COLLINS
STREET CLOTHES MORRIS, MARIO
GO HAWKS!!!!!!!!

Publix

February 25th, 2010
12:31 pm

Big Z would fit in perfect. Use Stirg d’Nahsif lineup and we have a chance. Now at the end of the year, we need to get rid of Marvin.

Gilley

February 25th, 2010
12:32 pm

@Stirg d’Nahsif

Oh ok Thanks for answering!!!

Astro Joe

February 25th, 2010
12:33 pm

At his age and with his injury history, it is doubtful that Ilgauskas would even want to play 28+ minutes a game if such a job were available. He has a chance to return to a team and city that has been his home for 13 years AND happens to have a great chance for a championship. So he’s supposed to walk away from that for more playing time? Let’s see PT or a ring? PT or a ring? Remember John Salley sitting on a Chicago bench and cheering wildly for MJ and Pippen? I think Z will do more than that but if that’s all he does, I have a feeling that would be fine with him. After fighting through all of those foot surgeries, if he wants to put his feet up and lounge his way to a ring, he deserves it.

If Sund strikes out with Z (as I expect), I just hope that he is truly commited to consider other options to upgrade the roster.

D21

February 25th, 2010
12:33 pm

@Gilley: to be playoff eligible, he doesn’t have to be signed before March 1st, he had to be waived. He can then sign when he wants.

Ry

February 25th, 2010
12:35 pm

Waste of time…espn reported that he already flew back to Cleveland this morning. I am sure they are working on details of the agreement even though he can’t rejoin them for 30 days. They will probably have contract details worked out by tomorrow.

Pete

February 25th, 2010
12:36 pm

This AVERAGE player has spent 50% of his over paid career with broken bones in his feet. He’s as fragile as Jerious Norwood of the Falcons.
No thanks.

Fundamentals

February 25th, 2010
12:42 pm

MC

We need to really investigate what waivers are coming in terms of a PG or Post defender. Potentially even a SF who could also play solid D & rebound, as well as shoot the 3 and penetrate?

Big Z might be nice to think about, but that’s alot of headlines for a guy who’s 95% sure he’s headed back to CLE.

IREPATL

February 25th, 2010
12:48 pm

i find it funny this guy is the talk of our team when hes not even coming here

Traceman

February 25th, 2010
12:49 pm

Marvin is struggling but benching him for the likes of Zaza or Mo is not the answer. His biggest issue right now is confidence and I don’t think benching him is going to help in that regard. Neither Mo nor Zaza is even close to Marvin from a talent perspective and neither has ever produced to the level Marvin produced at just last year as a 22 year old. Last year, Marvin’s efficiency rating was better than Jamal’s is right now so I know the guy can be productive, he just has to find his game.

Being at the game last night, I saw Mo, Joe Smith and Jamal all pull Marvin to the side at different times, trying to encourage him. They are veteran players who have been in slumps before and it was great to see the support and leadership they showed in trying to encourage their young teammate. Watching those guys do that just reinforces my belief that Jamal, Mo and Joe Smith are all quality guys that we are lucky to have on this team.

I think Woody is doing the right thing by decreasing Marvin’s minutes when he struggles. Woody might try playing him with that second unit some when they come in at the end of the 2nd quarter and then letting Mo get the minutes with the starters at the end of the 2nd to shake things up a little but I wouldn’t bench Marvin as long as we are winning. However, if we start losing and he continues to play poorly, then Woody has to do what he has to do.

I remain a HUGE Marvin fan and I still believe in him. I saw Smoove struggle last year after signing his new deal and I see how well he has bounced back this year. Many other players have done exactly the same thing. I believe Marvin will bounce back as well, hopefully sooner rather than later.

Section 303

February 25th, 2010
12:50 pm

Big Z would be a nice add, but he is not essential. Remember, guys, this is not a superstar player we are talking about. If the Hawks get him, that’s great. If not, then the season will go on as normal.

Some are acting like the fate of the organization rides on getting Big Z. It doesn’t.

Bibby for Devin Harris

February 25th, 2010
12:50 pm

It’s not gonna happen……he will wait 30 days….

Ted M

February 25th, 2010
12:50 pm

He could of just flew back to Cleve b/c thats where his home is. All I’ve read so far on this is that teams will only be offering a prorated league minimum to Z, Why?

Traceman

February 25th, 2010
12:52 pm

Ree Roe,

You are right on about Smoove. Putting him at SF would be a HORRIBLE mistake. He is a PF. Al might be a PF too but he is a better Center than Smoove is a SF.

Traceman

February 25th, 2010
12:54 pm

Ted M,

Teams like CLE, DEN and POR who have expressed interest in Big Z only have a prorated portion of the vet minimum to offer. I’m sure they would offer more if they could.

D21

February 25th, 2010
12:56 pm

@Section 303: it’s not that simple, it’s not Z with ATL, or not, It’s, if you face CLE, having Z with ATL and not with CLE, against ATL without Z and CLE now with Jamison + Z back.

Signing Z would be a little more for ATL, AND a little less for CLE. And his impact can be more important in ATL than in CLE.

IREPATL

February 25th, 2010
12:57 pm

lol “Ilgauskas has already returned to cleveland on a flight this afternoon” <<<<<<there you have it folks

doc

February 25th, 2010
1:02 pm

big z here? … yeah right. wake me when he signs. zzzzzzz

GeeMack

February 25th, 2010
1:04 pm

Astro Joe,

Thanks for bringing some reality to the pipe dreamer about acquiring Big Z.

Stirg d'Nahsif

February 25th, 2010
1:05 pm

Ree-Roe and Traceman, Z plays the perimeter, often; he shoots long range jumpers. That removes the opponents big man from down low and allows Horford and Smoove to do their thing. Lastly, there are more power forwards that can check J-Smoove than there are small forwards. Z would be a perfect fit.

Jay

February 25th, 2010
1:06 pm

Why does everyone want to move josh to the SF, but doesnt want him shooting 3’s????? Josh will not work at the 3. When i hear this i know you dont watch games. this team is built to be a 4 on 5 fastbreak(when they remember)every time down the court and we should accept that.I will take big Z off the bench, but Marvin is the problem.

Westurd

February 25th, 2010
1:07 pm

I heard Hakeem the Dream is coming out of retirement and joining the Hawks

Ree Roe

February 25th, 2010
1:08 pm

@ IREPATL, you do realize he lives in CLE & his family is there too. Contrary to popular belief I don’t think he’s made his decision on where to go just yet although I believe CLE is still the favorite. If his agent wasn’t just giving lip service about Z considering us, ATL might be more attractive than many of you give us credit for. He can compete for a title here & him coming here makes us thar much stronger.

-REEally it’s Roe!!!

AtlSouthside

February 25th, 2010
1:09 pm

Get her done!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Exactly what we need…. A legit 7footer

Ree Roe

February 25th, 2010
1:16 pm

@ Stirg, again Josh as a 3 is a bad move for us. Josh as a perimeter player will handle the ball more, shoot more jump shots & be less likely to play in the paint. That equals turnovers, I’ll advised jumpshots & less rebounds. On a defensive end, Josh would be on the opposing team’s best swingman (Lebron, Carmelo, Durant, etc) and that would take away his effectiveness as our only shot blocker on the team & exploit his weakness as an on ball defender. Josh IS NOT A 3. It’s a bad move to switch him from the PF position.

-REEticulate it for Roe!!!

MsDee

February 25th, 2010
1:19 pm

Marvin can be what Jamal is to the team,,a breathe of fresh air off the bench. Mo Evans can start but Marvin can and should get starter minutes just like Jamal is getting. Jamal is looking and playing a heck of a lot better coming off the bench than he ever did starting with New York or even Golden State. Starting Mo would give us the offense that Marvin couldnt do with JJ or Smoove in the game. Also, by letting Jamal & Marvin come off the bench, Teague will then have Marvin to hopefully get some assists from since Zaza and Joe Smith hasnt been helping much. So I think it could be a win-win situation. What do u guys think??

IREPATL

February 25th, 2010
1:20 pm

@ree, idk if i dont really see why he would leave the best team in the leaugue to come to us, lol joe says the same thing. only way i see him coming here is if he wants more pt, thats it, a huy like z does not care about the city or money for that matter, he’s abbout done in this league and needs to win a ring, truethfully i believe he would sign with denver before us and they seem to be more aggressive than we are in trying to get him

“There hasn’t been a day go by that I haven’t heard from Mark (Warkentien, the Nuggets’ vice president of basketball operations),” Herb Rudoy, Ilgauskas’ agent, said Wednesday. “He had a great relationship with ‘Z’ (back in Cleveland). Mark has been very aggressive to convince me to convince ‘Z.’ “

Michael Cunningham

February 25th, 2010
1:20 pm

@ everybody: i asked Sund about the Hawks’ salary-cap exceptions and he said they have none. but then i saw it reported elsewhere that they have both the mid-level and bi-annual exceptions. i’ve also seen conflicting reports about what exceptions the other suitors have available. so i’m trying to track all of this down today, stay tuned.

O'Brien

February 25th, 2010
1:20 pm

I think Big Z would be a good addition for the Hawks. It keeps him away from Cleveland, it gives us another shooter, it gives us 6 more fouls that we can use as needed against Shaq and D12, and maybe he could light a fire under ZaZa (who has clearly regressed this year).

Rod from CP (from the other blog),

While I agree with a lot of your Marvin criticsm, I do think he would improve coming off the bench.

By coming off the bench, he will get lots of minutes against the other team’s backup SF, and defensively, he should help the bench to play better defense than Mo does, because Mo is too small.

And on the bench team, Marvin would be our 2nd or 3rd option, whereas he is the 5th or 6th option among the starters. And by moving to the bench, there will be less pressure on Marvin too, which might help his aggressiveness and confidence. And he wouldn’t have to defer so much.

Traceman,

As a big fan of the Hawks, I hope Marvin turns it around. After all, he is only 23 (although this is his 5th year in the league).

But you’re right, Woody does have options when it comes to Marvin. So even if he doesn’t bench him, he can give him more minutes with the bench players.

But right now, Marvin is still averaging 30 minutes per game. I say cut his minutes more if he continues to struggle (or make him play with the bench players more) and give Mo some minutes with the starters.

Michael Cunningham

February 25th, 2010
1:21 pm

* should say i asked Sund a couple weeks ago haven’t reached him yet today.

gwite

February 25th, 2010
1:23 pm

I can almost guarantee Z will not sign with no team other than Cleveland.

If he did sign with another team, he knows he would then be revealed to be the Big Stiff that he is. That’s what he was before Lebron, and that’s what he’ll be anywhere else.

7′ 3″, Lifetime: 13.9 ppg, 7.7 reb.

Big f’n Stiff.

Ted M

February 25th, 2010
1:25 pm

Thanks Traceman

Justin

February 25th, 2010
1:34 pm

Just because Big Z flew back to Cleveland today means nothing, he has spent his entire career with Cleveland I’m pretty sure his house is still there, and not in Washington.

heelsfan

February 25th, 2010
1:34 pm

@traceman. Man your about the only logical one on here in regards to Marvin. He does seem to lack confidence but then again how can you fill confident if no matter if he is playing well or not Woody will sit him. Now that is the coaches fault. If he is playing well and with energy keep him in the game. Marv only had four shots last night. What can he do with that. Something does have to change and all signs point to Woody getting out of the A becuase the window is closing for this team.

Melvin

February 25th, 2010
1:44 pm

I say get Big Z and Larry Hughes in here. Talent win games… Worst case, at least they wont be on the opposing team….

vava74

February 25th, 2010
1:44 pm

MC,

This blog entry is a complete waste of web space. Ziggy will sign with the Cavs and it pointless to even waste a phone call to his agent.

This is all part of a make belief role playing gimmick to satisfy the league’s requirements for the pre-arrangement with Ziggy not being too evident.

[...] you find one that works. Woodson has yet to fully experiment with his rotation, and barring the improbable signing of Zydrunas Ilgauskas, this is how the team will look for the rest of the season. If the Hawks are gonna get past the 2nd [...]

O'Brien

February 25th, 2010
1:50 pm

MC,

It will be interesting to hear what you find in regards to what exceptions the Hawks have available. I’m no cap expert, but I know Ive also read that they have the mid-level and bi-annual available.

vava74,

I also dont think Big Z will sign anywhere else. He is going to be the franchise leader in games played for Cleveland (if he isnt already), and he knows that his best chance at a ring is in Cleveland. He has been there for 13 years, and his family is stable there. Why go somewhere else for a new coach, new players, new plays to learn etc?

That being said, Sund and the Hawks still have to do their due dilligence just in case Big Z surprises everyone by signing somewhere else.

Stirg d'Nahsif

February 25th, 2010
2:01 pm

The players in the locker room, Hawks’ coaches and staff have all said that Z would be the perfect fit. Al Horford even said that he’ll “do anything to get Z” in Atlanta. How is it that the un-athletic people, sitting behind a computer, know better than the people who actually play the sport?

J-Smoove entered the league, playing small forward. When Marvin was drafted, he was better at small forward than the power forward position. Josh was asked to gain weight and play some PF. Who cares that he’s not a perimeter shooter? He won’t need to be a perimeter shooter with the signing of Z. That would give us four sharp shooters (Z, Bibby, Johnson and Horford) and three 3-point shooters (Z, Bibby and Johnson).

Jborodawg

February 25th, 2010
2:02 pm

Z would be a great addition! Horford could finally play his true position. Big Z and Horford on the floor at the same time…cool! But, I also believe he’s gonna lean toward the Cavs.

terrell

February 25th, 2010
2:07 pm

Why would Zaza call Z? If he comes here, Zaza shouldn’t see the floor again. lol!

gwite

February 25th, 2010
2:16 pm

Now, how silly would it be for Horford or any other Hawk, or any player to say other than what Horford “has been told to say”? Especially when Big Stiff(Z) is most likely going back to Cleveland.

Talk about bulletin board material, for an already stacked team!

Ree Roe

February 25th, 2010
2:22 pm

@ Strig, I guess you & I will have to agree to disagree. If you think having Josh as one of our primary ball handlers on the perimeter and putting him on the opposing team’s best swing man is a good idea, then good for you. I’ve already outlined why it would be a disaster on both sides of the court, but maybe you’re partial to some information I haven’t seen yet. Josh Smith as our starting SF weakens this team, but I guess that’s ok for you b/c we’d have another perimeter shooter. SMH

-REEspect the Roe!!!

Traceman

February 25th, 2010
2:26 pm

@ Stirg,

What about the other things that Ree Roe mentioned. Specifically:

“Josh as a perimeter player will handle the ball more, shoot more jump shots & be less likely to play in the paint. That equals turnovers, Ill advised jumpshots & less rebounds. On a defensive end, Josh would be on the opposing team’s best swingman (Lebron, Carmelo, Durant, etc) and that would take away his effectiveness as our only shot blocker on the team & exploit his weakness as an on ball defender.”

All of those things are right on point. Putting Smoove at SF would do to him the same thing it has done to Kirilenko in UT. It would take him from being one of the best, most versatile, stat-stuffing players in the league to being an overpaid guy that the team can’t trade. No thanks.

Hawkeye

February 25th, 2010
2:33 pm

Big Z should come ,so that the clumsy duck called Marvin Williams would be pushed to bench..

Michael Cunningham

February 25th, 2010
2:34 pm

@vava: does this mean i should just call it a day and chill? sweet! i’m cool with that but i don’t think my boss would like it.

Ken Strickland

February 25th, 2010
2:37 pm

Ilgouskas averaged 20.5MPG with Cleveland before the trade. The question is, WOULD HE SERIOUSLY CONSIDER SIGNING WITH THE HAWKS AFTER FACTORING IN THE POSSIBILITY OF PLAYING FAR FEWER MINS, KNOWING HOW WOODSON UNDERUTILIZES HIS BENCH, ESPECIALLY HIS BIGS? This could go a long way towards determining how much of a negative effect Woodson’s treatment of veteran bench players, not named JCrawford, will have on future attempts to sign the quality veteran players he prefers for his bench.

You WOODY LOVERS can pretend all you want, but NBA players are completely aware of our issues with Woodson and his gross underutilization of our bench. Hell, they’ve been playing us and taking advantage of it for the past few yrs. The only veteran players we can hope to sign in the future will be those who are waaay past their prime and just looking to hold on, and/or just looking for another paycheck.

Traceman

February 25th, 2010
2:39 pm

@ MC,

I have a hard time believing that the Hawks don’t have ANY exceptions available. Actually, I believe they have the full MLE available as the MLE is available every year and we didn’t sign any players who were not our own players to anything above the vet minimum last year. Last year, we signed the following players:

Marvin – our own FA
Bibby – our own FA
Zaza – our own FA
Joe Smith – vet minimum
Collins – vet minimum
West – vet minimum
Hunter – vet minimum

Everybody else was already under contract. Where then did the MLE go? I think we still have it.

Daniel

February 25th, 2010
2:47 pm

MC- I don’t agree with Vava that this is a waste of time, anymore than anything else we discuss on this blog, but I do agree that all the agent talk is just to mask the whole prearranged deal that they have “vehemently” denied.

I still think there is more to Crawford’s injury than we are getting. Put your screws to the team there. Also, Sund is not telling the truth if he says we don’t have the MLE, where was it used?

Interesting also that Sund is NOT interested in Larry Hughes, but is willing to put out there interest in Z. If we go with the assumption, that Z. is going back to Clevland and this talk is a horse and pony show, what benefit does it do the Hawks to throw their name in the hat? One argument would be that it is just PR to the fans to “show they are trying”, but when he doesn’t sign doesn’t that hurt the PR?

Or do you think the Hawks really think they have a shot at getting him?

Jody

February 25th, 2010
2:49 pm

As talented as Josh, he’s capable of playing 3 and 4. As long as he attacks the basket, he will be successful.

Daniel

February 25th, 2010
2:50 pm

Good grief Ken,
Do you really think that your assesment of Woody’s bench use is gospel in the NBA? Do you really think that Zydrunis considers that an issue at all? C’mon man try to find a new angle on something.

Is there any subject involving the Hawks that you can’t spin to be somehow Woody’s fault?

Rod from College Park

February 25th, 2010
2:51 pm

Traceman,

“You are right on about Smoove. Putting him at SF would be a HORRIBLE mistake. He is a PF. Al might be a PF too but he is a better Center than Smoove is a SF.”

While I agree that it would not be ideal, he could not possibly be worse than our current starter. It would be a problem because we would loose on some of the good things that Josh brings. If say we were to land Big Z and Al was moved to the 4, there is no way possible that Josh would be worse than Marvin in anything besides FT shooting percentage and maybe 3 point percentage. He would be a better defender, better scorer, better rebounder, better assist man, better attacking the rim, better finisher…….. This is all hypothetical as we know that Woodson won’t change his starting lineup for anything.

Traceman

February 25th, 2010
2:52 pm

@ MsDee,

I think your idea has a lot of validity but I would continue to start Marvin and just play him more with the backups. Mo could get more minutes with the starters.

I agree with you that Marvin could bring some much needed defensive help to the 2nd unit and I think he would likely get more shots up with that group. Our 2nd unit is just HORRIBLE defensively on an individual basis. Teague is a rookie PG. Few rookie PGs defend very well. The real JT (Jason Terry) was an awful defender as a rookie. Jamal is trying to play D for the first time in his career. He’s better than awful now but still not great. Mo tries but he is undersized against most SFs. Joe Smith has lost a step. Or two. Zaza hustles but he can’t jump and he is FAR too slow to rotate.

Putting Marvin at SF in place of Mo with that group would be an improvement in my opinion. That said, I would want Marvin at SF with the starters down the stretch for defensive purposes unless Bibby was in with Jamaal and JJ was at SF.

Traceman

February 25th, 2010
2:54 pm

@ O’Brien,

I agree with you on Marvin. I would just leave him in the starting lineup and play him more with the bench guys to see if that got him going.

Melvin

February 25th, 2010
2:56 pm

MC,

Could you ask Josh which position he prefers to play and/or what position he feels suits his skill set? We as bloggers have our own opinions but it would be nice to here what’s his views are.

Hawks Fan

February 25th, 2010
2:59 pm

Hawks are full of BS. We’re not getting “Big Z”. He’s going back to Cleveland. According to an ESPN post, he’s aready back in Cleveland. Why not pick-up Larry Hughes. Put him at small forward, Marvin on the bench. Hughes would give us much versatility. We need someone to push Marvin. He plays too relaxed to me. He needs to be pushed.

GeeMack

February 25th, 2010
3:01 pm

Ken Strickland

Like the guys (Joe Smith & Jason Collins)we picked up this summer that you are screaming to give more time too.

Section 303

February 25th, 2010
3:01 pm

@D21, it really is that simple. I’m not saying that Big Z would not help. He would. But, the season is not over if he goes back to the Cavs. I’m pretty sure the games will still be played.

We seem to be forgetting that the Hawks were severely banged up in round 2 last year. If they are healthy, with Big Z or not, they will put up a fight against the Cavs….if they even play the Cavs, that is.

MsDee

February 25th, 2010
3:18 pm

Traceman,

Just curious..what would truly be the difference in Marvin starting and playing bench minutes, than just coming off the bench with Jamal and playing starter minutes? Both players, Marvin & Mo, will get something out of it. I think our starters can handle the folk well on their own..its our bench players that seem to let the lead go most of the time and Marvin has nothing and I mean NOTHING to do with the scoring of the starters or defense for that matter. His rebounding has gone down big-time.

As a basketball player myself, I started most of my basketball career and let me tell yall, I wasnt in small girly girl leagues, I was playing against elite colleges..(Tenn Vols, Texas Tech, Stanford,,ect..) as a shooting guard. My college coach needed fire power coming off the bench, (Jamal’s role), and I loved it cause it allowed me to see what I could do differently than what the starters were doing and I was able to score more than the starters. I believe this is what Marvin is lacking right now, that 6-man drive that all the commentators and basketball analists were saying about him when he was drafted so high. I think this would be a good look for him..and who knows, he could start looking like the Marvin BK drafted him for!

MsDee

February 25th, 2010
3:21 pm

I know I spelled ‘analist’ wrong..just didnt feel like looking it up but i’m sure u guys know what i’m saying..(smile)

MsDee

February 25th, 2010
3:26 pm

Also, wasnt Marvin coming off the bench in college?? This really couldnt hurt Marvin if he came off the bench, i mean starting isnt getting done either. Woodson should at least test it out and see what happens.

Oh and Traceman,

Its not so much that Marvin starts but play with the bench that could make the difference cause it doesn’t..its a ‘mind thing’ to come off the bench. Again, look how well Jamal is doing since coming off the bench, it makes you proform better. Marvin could proform better if Woodson would only give it a try.

Daniel

February 25th, 2010
3:27 pm

analyst (Ms. Dee)- but lord knows I make plenty of spelling errors.

Hey, did you guys see the Step Show “controversy”? Its on AJC front page. The girls from Arkansas seem a lot better to me than the ones from Indiana, I wonder how much racial politics is involved here. I dunno, and I am no step expert but seems the Arkansas girls were better. Am I missing something?

bob

February 25th, 2010
3:27 pm

the hawks can offer a locker room with xbox, pool table, big screen tv and a chef. he could also get out of hanging around cleveland and horse head james

Daniel

February 25th, 2010
3:29 pm

Ms. Dee the counter argument for Marvin coming off the bench is that you will be starting Joe at the 3 which takes away his size advantage. Not saying it is not worth a try, but just playing devil’s advocate.

vinny

February 25th, 2010
3:30 pm

get the godfather to make him an offer he can’t refuse

Daniel

February 25th, 2010
3:31 pm

I still maintain the biggest advantage for getting Z, is that he would not be with the CAVS which would force Shaq into bigger and bigger minutes. I think his absence from the Cavs hurts them more than the benefit he brings another team.

The Truth

February 25th, 2010
3:32 pm

This riddle regarding Big Z’s destination will be easy to solve. After he clears waivers and hasn’t signed with any other team including the Hawks within a few weeks, then you will know that this was all a PR stunt brought to you by Sund and Big Z’s agent.

I hope this scenario is not true because the “cry for help” has been now revealed (for the first time) by key core players such as JJ, Josh and Al. This could set a very sour tone if that became the perception. In other words, the stunt (if it is perceive to be a stunt), could backfire. The fallout could be JJ walks (for sure) and the Hawks come up even shorter in the playoff.

The name that stirs fear in the Bubba crew

February 25th, 2010
3:36 pm

Ree Roe I could not agree more. The voice of ignorance that wants to move Josh to a 3 has no clue. Josh is one of the best power forwards (or should I say point forward considering his great assist talent.), in the NBA. I suggest we get Horford minutes at the 4and 5, filling in for Josh and the Z man. He could still get starters like minutes and make our front line more rested and a true load against teams.

We have got to stop the bleeding in the middle.

Astro Joe

February 25th, 2010
3:36 pm

Strickland, the guys who are bought out of their contracts are playing on teams that are lottery-bound. So right off the bat, playing for a team that is certainly going to the playoffs is better than staying with a loser. Secondly, the Hawks are frequently on ESPN and have 2 All-Stars (both signs of national respect). So any vet bought out will have the chance to play inmeaningful games on national TV, that has to help their ability to secure a good contract next year. Additionally, the Hawks will be favored to win at least the initial playoff round which should mean more exposure and a higher playoff check. Lastly, any vet must have the attitude that just because another player fails, doesn’t mean that they will fail. In order to have a long NBA career you must understand how to prove value to a coach and how to carve out a niche. Z, as an example, isn’t going to say “wow, he doesn’t play that slow-moving, massively over-weight Jason Collins so I guess he won’t play me”. Tony Battie isn’t thinking “I’d rather stay with this horrific NJ Nets team and have my name associated with the worse team in league history than sit on the bench in Atlanta”. If a SF like Devean George is bought out, he will surely think “they don’t have any good-sized back-up SFs with playoff experience so I would likely be used in some capacity to help defend SFs like Pierce, LeBron and Hedo”. There is pretty much no down-side of joining the Hawks for a few months. Even if the are oppressed by Woody, they still get a playoff check. And it is doubtful that there will be many slots available for these bought-out players… so it’s not like they will be choosing from many of the top 6-7 teams across the league.

Go sell you hate elsewhere. Bought-out vets won’t run from this team.

rob

February 25th, 2010
3:37 pm

Why not got after DION GLOVER? Is he still alive?

Truth-Serum

February 25th, 2010
3:37 pm

The Truth I have to agree, Im also concerned that this is a calculated effort to appease the fan base. Yes, we will know in a couple of weeks.

EW

February 25th, 2010
3:39 pm

Would LOVE to see Al Horford at his natural position of PF….can you imagine the matchup problems we could create putting Joe and Jamal at guard, Josh at the 3, AL at PF and Big Z in the middle..no i didn’t forget about bibby, this would only be situation…but an exciting thought…

Only problem is that the Cavs are almost a foregone conclusion to make it to the finals…what would Z’s incentive be to come here? He knows he would have to play Shaq to make it to the finals.

MannyT

February 25th, 2010
3:40 pm

@Traceman–I’m pretty sure you are correct–the Hawks didn’t use their exception slots. HOWEVER

I think we won’t sign Z even if he is available.

Y…follow the money.

Unless Z takes the minimum, he will likely put us over the luxury tax!

It’s not what we pay him, but what the annual salary that factors into the luxury cap.

(easy example, assume player has $10 mil annual salary for a 10 game season but you pick him up for the last game of the season. You would pay him $1 mil, but his cap value would be $10 mil. I know the example doesn’t fit the number of games in the NBA, but it makes the math easy to follow.) Otherwise teams way over the cap, who cannot add players easily, would offer the Mikki Moore’s of the world contracts on the last day of the season. Almost no impact to the tax, but a larger than normal salary slot to play with before July 1 for draft day trades.

X factor to all of this…if a team really wanted to keep him away from Cleveland, pick him up on waivers. Don’t let him buy out. He could sit at home and get paid like T-Mac was doing until Houston traded him.

As they said in Good Will Hunting…How do you like them apples!

BWAF

Truth-Serum

February 25th, 2010
3:40 pm

“Go sell you hate elsewhere. Bought-out vets won’t run from this team.”

What? Ken? A hater? LMAO!

Michael Cunningham

February 25th, 2010
3:43 pm

@Trace: check the update. Hawks have both exceptions.

@ Daniel: i agree Big Z is headed back to Cleveland and this is all for show. that doesn’t mean i ignore the story (even if i wanted to). sometimes us hacks have to play along with the game, ’tis what ’tis.

@ Melvin: check the update. Smoove says he’s cool with SF. he says the biggest adjustment would be chasing SFs off pin-down screens on the block

Astro Joe

February 25th, 2010
3:43 pm

The Truth, if Z returns to his home of 13 years to play for the team favored to win the championship AND sleep in his home bed, I seriously doubt that the Hawks players will view it as a “stunt” and be disgruntled. Sund needs to take his turn at the plate with a good offer, players recognize that not every courtship ends with a marriage. But I am interested in hearing about Plan B. It is very likely that the list won’t end with Z, Hughes and Mike James. So will Sund consider others if he fails (as expected) with Z? When he went to the ASG, did he ask for extra dough for Z specifically or for a 14th player in general?

Truth-Serum

February 25th, 2010
3:46 pm

Astro Joe, point made, and well taken!

MsDee

February 25th, 2010
3:47 pm

Daniel,

I hear what you are saying but wouldnt you take that chance of JJ playing 3 in the very early part of a game which is the 1st quarter? The Hawks play switching defense anyway..so JJ is still playing defense out of position..again, I just dont see the problem with Marvin coming off the bench..

Truth-Serum

February 25th, 2010
3:50 pm

Just because Smoove is a team player and a great guy doesnt mean its a wise idea to move him to the 3. You wont find a kid to disagree with eating bags of candy after Halloween but that doesnt make it a wise decision.

The Truth

February 25th, 2010
3:52 pm

AJ

Using my favorite line regarding Big Z; WE SHALL SEE!!

Astro Joe

February 25th, 2010
3:53 pm

I’m glad Sund is not interested in Hughes nor Mikki Moore. And I personally don’t want Mike James either. I’m waiting for the next crop of bought-out vets to see what else might be on the menu. Surely the Nets will drop some of their players. I understand chasing Z but wih only one spot available and no need to rush, I’d wait until closer to the 3/1 deadline before chasing just any player that is available. Imagine if Sund reaches a deal for Hughes and the next day, someone like Mike Miller is suddenly available.

Traceman

February 25th, 2010
3:54 pm

Rod,

I like Big Z and I think he would be a GREAT fit as our backup Center but I think you are giving him more credit than I am. At this stage of his career, he is not as good as Al is at Center. In addition, I think Al would be terrific at PF but I am not sure that he would be as good as Smoove is there. Al made the All Star game at Center because the competition was lesser but Smoove is having the better season. If Al was competing for an All Star spot with LeBron, KG, Bosh and Pierce, I don’t think he would have made the All Star game either.

As for whether Smoove would be better at SF than Marvin, RIGHT NOW, I agree with you that he would because Marvin is struggling tremendously. We just need to get Marvin back to playing the way he is capable of playing.

When he’s playing well, Marvin is a solid SF. Last year, Smoove only averaged .9 more rebounds than Marvin even though Marvin was playing SF and he was playing PF. Marvin also shot the ball well and defended well. Even in this bad year, Marvin stays in front of perimeter players MUCH better than Smoove does. Smoove is EXPLOSIVE but he not that quick laterally and his perimeter defensive fundamentals are well below average. When he gets caught on the switch by a guard, he usually gets beat and then tries to block the shot from behind whereas Marvin is generally able to stay in front of them.

Bottom line, moving Smoove to SF would not be best for the team short term or long term. We need Smoove to remain in the position where he is arguably our most important player.

Rod from College Park

February 25th, 2010
3:58 pm

Traceman,

“Marvin is struggling but benching him for the likes of Zaza or Mo is not the answer. His biggest issue right now is confidence and I don’t think benching him is going to help in that regard. Neither Mo nor Zaza is even close to Marvin from a talent perspective and neither has ever produced to the level Marvin produced at just last year as a 22 year old. Last year, Marvin’s efficiency rating was better than Jamal’s is right now so I know the guy can be productive, he just has to find his game.”

Your loyalty to Marvin blinds you from seeing how terrible his is. First thing please stop with the age thing. Marvin has been in the league for 5 years. So he is 23, Durant is 21, so is Tyreke Evans. Does him being 23 mean that he will stop being goofy when he is 25? Does it mean that he will learn how to exploit a mismatch at 26? Secondly you state that Mo and ZAZA don’t have the talent that Marvin has. Actually Mo Evans is more athletic and has just as much talent as Marvin. Before he came to Atlanta, he was considered a top notch defender of his position which should be the 2 not the 3. He can actually dribble with his head up, in more than one direction. He can finish without falling. He can shoot the 3 with the same accuracy as Marvin. He is just 6′4 and Marvin is 6′9. The other fact that should be taken into consideration is that neither Mo or ZaZa has ever played on a team where they were not guarded, or defended by guys 4 to 5 inches shorter than them the majority of the time, like Marvin is. The numbers below support the fact that they have had similar or better numbers in their career than Marvin has put up this year, with fewer minutes, and I little under what he put up last year, so your statement is actually not true.

ZAZA
05-06 ATL 78 78 31.4 0.451 0.000 0.735 3.4 4.5 7.9 1.7 1.1 0.5 2.31 3.67 11.7
06-07 ATL 72 47 28.1 0.474 0.000 0.786 2.8 4.2 6.9 1.5 1.1 0.5 2.25 3.71 12.2

Mo Evans
07-08 ORL 68 47 23.9 0.489 0.396 0.691 1.3 1.8 3.1 1.0 0.6 0.1 0.59 1.94 9.3

Please notice the year that you referenced that was so great for Marvin, Mo shot a higher percentage from from the field (48%) and 3 point line (39%)than Marvin did, which would be critical in this offense. His ppg were not as high, but he played almost 11 minutes less per game. Zaza’s numbers need no explanation. You find your game in college or your first cuople of years in the pros. The guys you will refer to that found their games later like say a Jermaine O’neal, did not get heavy minutes at the start of their careers like Marvin. A slump does not last a whole season. It’s very rare that a good player regresses to the extent that he can’t knock down wide open shots for a whole year. If you want to support him, that’s you perogative, but don’t get mad when people who have eyes and watch the games point out the fact that he brings very little to this team for a pretty good price tag.

Michael Cunningham

February 25th, 2010
4:08 pm

@Astro: Hawks say they will add 14th if it’s the right guy, not just Z. you are correct, not much out there right now. D. Gooden might have been a decent possibility but GM Dunleavy says Clips are keeping him. haven’t heard any other intriguing names headed for the buyout bin.

@ Truth Serum (you’re not the same guy who was causing trouble on here before, are you?): agree it’s not a good idea to use Smoove at SF extensively but couldn’t work in small spurts against other big lineups?

@ everybody wondering if Woody would play Z: he’s been very enthusiastic about the possibility of getting him so i’d say yes. but you know how that goes.

O'Brien

February 25th, 2010
4:08 pm

“The Hawks are seven games behind Cleveland in fourth place and could try to sell Ilgauskas on being the player to help them reach the next level”. MC

I dont think there is anybody out there (Big Z included) who would beleive that if the Hawks signed Big Z, he would take us to the next level.

Rod,

Right now, Marvin is probably the 3rd best SF on the team (JJ first, then Josh second). It would be good to see Marvin step his game up in the playoffs, because that will catch everybody by surprise, and imagine how much better the Hawks would be.

AJ,

I hope Sund has a plan B, but I wont be surprised when for whatever reason, we dont add anybody.

Rod from College Park

February 25th, 2010
4:11 pm

Traceman,

I actually have no problems with your reponse above my last post, but the Marvin is a solid defender part which I disagreed with last year also. Marvin can’t check any 2’s either, and although YOU claim Marvin moves laterally better than Josh, the deal braker is that Josh has the ability to recover and alter or block the shot which Marvin does not have, and he has better timing and feel for the game. Kind of like how Deion was in football.

ILL-logical

February 25th, 2010
4:12 pm

Well, now that our esteemed scribe has ‘fessed up to understanding what the deal is with this whole Big Z thing-especially from the Hawks’ front office- we can all move on; there is nothing to see here.

What was revealing were the barely muted screams for help from Al and company for a bigger presence in the middle. The elephant in the room is no longer unobtrusive.The question now is who is going to take the blame when our interior defense is shredded by pentrating fast guards and our “bigs” get pounded on the boards? Are there going to a choruses of I am shocked to see that we are not capable enough in the middle? Or will a certain coach be punished for not developing the guys he had?

Stay tuned , it is going to a lively debate.
(Native American prayer dance sounds here)

Mike is Back

February 25th, 2010
4:12 pm

MC, great stuff as always…Hard to imagine Big Z passing up an opportunity to reunite with LBJ. Not to mention all the fouls calls he would be giving up. Lol

On the subject of Marvin, I think in a system like Woody’s Marvin will always have his peaks and valley until he develops a go to play. He wasn’t able to maintain his new found three point stoke…I think that has limited his scoring…and hurt his confidence… Now he gets most of his points off hustle plays…when he hustles. lol

I still think he is a much better defender than most give him credit for. When you break down the offensive schematic of the Hawks…Marvin is your fourth or fifth option…so it is a catch21 for me. I want him to score more and play aggressive on the offense…but not at the expense of destroying the chemistry on the team, taking ill-advised shots. He plays the role Woody has design for him. He has always feed out his jump shot…if he could get his shot going on a consistent basis…everything else would come much easier for him. I think he will get it together before the playoff.

sam'l

February 25th, 2010
4:14 pm

IF….the Hawks get a chance to bring Z, and I don’t think they will, he should get an extremely thorough and probing physical before anything is ever done. I would err on the side of caution here because you want someone who can take some wear and tear from Cleveland,Orlando and LA..

I like the guy’s work effort and discipline.

Some of the questions that are piling up…What is wrong with Bibby? Is he really too old or injured to play? Is Marvin just too spaced out or does he have some REAL ISSUES we don’t know about. Pachulia sometimes seems terribly lost which I don’t remember is a baseline condition for him. Evans can shoot, Teague can dish, Mario can pester. All the subs can sit down on the plane or on their day off and study out of bounds plays, new wrinkles, the opposition’s likely moves and work on specific roles with Woody. (a la LA’s Tyronn Lue getting cornrows and pestering Iverson which happened in the finals a few years ago). Obviously, some serious study has to be done for D. Howard alone. Hawk’s intuitive thought has to improve. Spacing, time management, defensive moves to force traps, offensive moves to create openings. Hard to think creatively when you’re always scared something weird is going to happen (time clock mistake, fouls people don’t see, losing 18-point leads through laziness, which I think is what happened, franchise going out of business)

One thing I will say, Jose Smith does really nice when he jumps out, steals and goes the distance. Way to go Josh. And really, the man obviously has the strength to increase his range. Nothing wrong with a jumper if he hits it. I would practice and practice on that until it is second nature.

This guy gets a lot of credit from me, because he has grown!

wcj

February 25th, 2010
4:14 pm

Will Mike Woodson play big Z? don’t sign the guy and leave him of the bench. He can help the hawks by moving AL to powerforward. Mike Woodson might be the one who sinks the U.S.S. Big Z battle ship.

sam'l

February 25th, 2010
4:16 pm

Who is Jose Smith anyway?

bigdave

February 25th, 2010
4:29 pm

Josh Smith can play the SF position..

ive had a change of heart at the idea of Josh Smith playing the 3 for the Hawks and only the Hawks. i dont think it increases his work load on the offensive end anymore than what it is now. nor does it exploit his weaknesses anymore than our current set up. at first the idea of him moving further away from the basket seemed ludicrous however, outside of his occasional iso post up where is he anyway… Marvin just sets up behind 3 b/c someone has told him he can hit that shot consistently. Josh is a better passer/play maker, finisher, and im not so sure he isnt an equal ball handler. Josh would be much more active and could post up smaller 3’s if we wanted to give him his occasional iso.

if Z were to come here id consider starting him immediately. however, folks… he’s going back to the Cavs.

Astro Joe

February 25th, 2010
4:41 pm

@MC, that’s good news. Now we just need to see if “the right guy” becomes available.

There are plenty of players available who Woody never played because he is such an oppressor of bench players. Guys like Obinna Ekezie, Cedric Bozeman, John Edwards, Peja Drobnjak, Slava Medvedenko, Este Batista, Lorenzen Wright, Jeremy Richardson, Othella Hunter and Salim Stoudemire. You’re new around these Atlanta parts, MC, so you don’t know about the incredible bench talent that Woody has refused to play over the past 4-5 years. I mean, just look at the big numbers Solo Jones is putting up in Indy or Acie Law, Royal Ivey, Ty Lue and Anthony Johnson. All of those guys wasted away in Atlanta and became significant contributors in the past year or two with their new teams. Right?

Daniel

February 25th, 2010
4:43 pm

So MC, If we accept that this whole thing is for show, then what do the Hawks gain by putting themselves out there? Is it really “due diligence”? Part of the league mandate to pretend that other teams have a chance? To try and snow the fans that they are trying to get better? I don’t see the upside in involving your name with a situation that has no chance of working out in your favor. Maybe I am missing something here.

Traceman

February 25th, 2010
4:46 pm

Rod,

First of all, Marvin was NEVER the prospect that Durant was so no need to even put him in the conversation.

Second, PLENTY of players figure it out late. Chauncey Billups, Gerald Wallace, Steve Nash, Antonio Daniels, Brendan Haywood, Chris Kaman and Hedo Turkoglu come to mind right off the top of my head as talented players who didn’t approach their best play until later in their careers.

Third, if you think Mo Evans has as much TALENT as Marvin then I have to question your ability to evaluate basketball talent. That is BEYOND preposterous. Mo has maximized the talent he has with hard work and he should be commended for that but his talent is nowhere near Marvin’s talent. Marvin was the number 2 overall pick based on his talent. Mo wasn’t even drafted. Nine SGs were taken in the 2001 draft and Mo went undrafted. The likes of Jeff Trepagnier, Jamison Brewer, Kyle Hill and Maurice Jeffers were considered more talented than Mo coming out of college and were drafted while he was not. The great GA Tech superstar ALVIN JONES was drafted and Mo was not. That’s all that needs to be said about talent.

The fact that Marvin is often guarded by guys that are significantly shorter than he is SUPPORTS the fact that he is talented. How many guys his size have the ability to effectively play on the perimeter? Dirk and Durant being able to play on the perimeter at an even bigger size than Marvin is part of what makes them Superstars.

Your numbers are hilarious. You think you are actually SUPPORTING your contention that Mo and Zaza (ZAZA!) are comparable to Marvin talent-wise based on the fact that their numbers in the BEST years of their CAREERS is comparable to Marvin’s numbers in the WORST year of his career? At 22, Marvin put up numbers ON A PLAYOFF TEAM that neither of those guys will EVER achieve.

So yes, I WILL continue to support Marvin because I know he has talent and as long as he keeps working hard, he will find his game again.

Traceman

February 25th, 2010
4:59 pm

@ BigDave,

I think most of us believe that Smoove can and SHOULD play SF in certain situations. I just think he should start and play the vast majority of his minutes at PF. Nothing wrong with playing him a few mpg at SF with Al or even Joe Smith at PF and Zaza (or in my dreams Big Z) at Center. What I don’t want to see is Josh get all messed up trying to play 2 positions when he is just now starting to play PF at an All Star level. Look at Kirilenko. That is EXACTLY what happened to him.

Jon Megrue

February 25th, 2010
4:59 pm

This is funny, I traded for Ilgauskas on NBA Live and he was a Hawk at the beginning of the season. Make it happen!

Ted M

February 25th, 2010
5:07 pm

Hawks have both exceptions – What does that mean as far as what the Hawks can offer Z?

Najeh Davenpoop

February 25th, 2010
5:09 pm

Of course Big Z would be an upgrade for the Hawks, considering that our own Z sucks at every aspect of the game right now. I still think it has less than zero chance of happening. I don’t see any incentive whatsoever for Ilgauskas to go to any team but the Cavs. The Cavs have a better record, better chances of winning, and it’s not like he’s going to get a ton of minutes here or in Denver anyway.

I wouldn’t mind bringing Mikki Moore in for a workout though. He won’t solve our size issues inside since he’s built like a stick figure, but he will bring energy and rebounding. You know, that stuff Zaza used to provide when he was good.

Najeh Davenpoop

February 25th, 2010
5:11 pm

I think Josh will struggle both offensively and defensively if he was playing small forward. That’s not a good fit for him.

If Ilgauskas is brought in, it will and should be as a reserve whose minutes vary depending on the matchup. Changing the entire game plan to accommodate him wouldn’t be a good idea.

terrell

February 25th, 2010
5:26 pm

Thabbeet sent to D-League? A top 5 pick? Wow! Guess it’s better than rotting on the bench.

Westurd

February 25th, 2010
5:27 pm

Marvin = 0 for 4 shooting with 2 rebounds in 20:00 mins last night?

WTF?

eric

February 25th, 2010
5:36 pm

2 Words…. Get Him!!!.. to add Get Z and we take The Big 3 down….

Jody

February 25th, 2010
5:40 pm

ILL-logical,

Great post. After hearing the comments from Al and Josh, folks won’t be able to ignore the huge elephant (lack of size) in the room much longer, although I question why it was ignored in the first place.

The Truth

February 25th, 2010
5:48 pm

Let me understand this now; Sund stated previously that he had not plans in filling the 14th roster spot. Suggesting we will stay the course and we are just fine with what we have. The trade deadline came and left. Then the Big Z opportunity emerged in which he stated that he will make an exception for Big Z and pursue him. That news even got the players salivating over the prospect. Now consensus suggests the likelihood that Big Z will probably not signed with the Hawks and that there is really an imaginary plan B that Sund is really pursuing (after the trade deadline) to acquire help for the Hawks in the playoff.

This is amazing really some stuff.

The Truth

February 25th, 2010
5:50 pm

Correction: “This is really amazing stuff”

Traceman

February 25th, 2010
6:00 pm

This is a little off topic but I have to say that we have some TERRIBLE fans in this city. TERRIBLE! Can our fans possibly be less energetic?

Most teams as good as the Hawks enjoy a significant home court advantage but we sure as heck don’t. It’s bad enough that no one goes to the games but if you do go, can you at least cheer a little and try to create some semblance of a home court advantage? Good grief! I found myself yelling “D-FENSE!” on one end and “LET’S GO Hawks!” all alone for a significant stretch of the 4th quarter while the fans around me just sat on their hands. If you are not going to cheer for your team in a tight 4th quarter, why even show up?

If the crowd is anywhere near as bad versus DAL tomorrow night as it was last night, the Hawks are in trouble.

Clyde

February 25th, 2010
6:11 pm

If Z doesn’t come here Sean Williams is still available

Melvin

February 25th, 2010
6:23 pm

Clyde,

Last I read, Sean signed to play with some team in China….LOL.. You are a diehard Sean Williams fan or relative….

Rod from College Park

February 25th, 2010
6:24 pm

Traceman,

Marvin was the prospect that Durant was, that is why he was drafted #2 in the draft ahead of two of the best point guards of this generation. The Hawks were not the only team in the league who rated him so high. He was not projected to be the scorer Durant was, but I remember comparisons to guys like Kevin Garnett. Durant was used becuase of you constantly bringing up Marvin’s age.

Second, out all of the guys you listed, I will only compare Hedo Turkoglu, and Gerald Wallace because they play the same position, and since you have so much basketball knowledge, you should know that point guard and center are much harder positions, and require a little more skill than a wing player. Again both guys, Hedo and Gerald got much fewer minutes than Marvin early in their career, and by their 5th year in the league, they had pretty much become above average players. Gerald was 15 and 7.5 and Hedo was 14 and 3.5, and considered a 3 point specialist.

Third, I don’t know how you define talent. Marvin was drafted based on potential or upside, not talent. He was not more talented in basketball than Chris Paul or Derron Williams. Mo can do everything Marvin can do. He can shoot just as good or better, he handles the ball better, he can defend his position better, he can jump, he finishes better, he is more fluid, he is just as athletic, he is faster, quicker with or without the ball, he is just not as tall, and does not have a 7 foot wingspan. Marvin is a better rebounder because of his size, and free throw shooter. According to your statement talent is based on your draft position. So Marvin is more talented than Chris Paul huh?

The fact that Marvin is guarded by shorter players supports the fact that teams don’t repect his offensive game, and can afford to put guys 4 to five inches shorter than him to contain him. That is total disrespect in the NBA. Do you watch the Hawks? Do you see what Joe Johnson, Josh Smith, or Horford do everytime a much smaller man is guarding them? How you think that that shows Marvin’s talent is beyond me.

This is your statement:

“Neither Mo nor Zaza is even close to Marvin from a talent perspective and neither has ever produced to the level Marvin produced at just last year as a 22 year old.”

I simply responded to your statement and showed you that they had produced close to that level. What does a playoff team have to do with it? Again I don’t know how you define talent. Is talent getting your shot blocked by players smaller than you on a consistent basis. Is it falling down when you try to convert a layup? We were told that he worked hard this summer. If you want to support him, go ahead, I will continue to bash him until he turns uninvisible. Also please stop with the Josh had a bad year last year nonsense. He was our best player in the playoffs. He played hurt at the beginning of the season, and even when Josh was not playing as well as we were used to, he never was invisible when he was on the court.

Michael Cunningham

February 25th, 2010
6:38 pm

@ O’Brien: “I dont think there is anybody out there (Big Z included) who would beleive that if the Hawks signed Big Z, he would take us to the next level.” well, that’s why it’s called a “sell.” ;) in this case, the next level would be the East finals, and you and me and maybe Z aren’t buying it but who knows?

@ Astro: “So MC, If we accept that this whole thing is for show, then what do the Hawks gain by putting themselves out there? Is it really “due diligence”? Part of the league mandate to pretend that other teams have a chance? To try and snow the fans that they are trying to get better?”

due diligence, yes. league mandate to be part of the show? naw, the show is just from the perspective of Z’s agent and the Cavs. a show for Hawks fans? i suppose it could be that but why do it now? they already said they were going to carry 13. i think they figure Z is headed back to the Cavs but why wouldn’t they at least give it a shot? what’s the harm, really? if by some miracle he ended up somewhere other than Cleveland and the Hawks didn’t take a shot i think some of my blog people would burn down Philips.

Michael Cunningham

February 25th, 2010
6:41 pm

aw, man, it turns it into a real smiley? sorry, O’Brien, that’s pretty lame.

doc

February 25th, 2010
6:49 pm

this idea of going after z reminds me of the disguise the nfl uses to interview minority candidates for head coach positions after the decision of whom they are going to hire has been made. sorry, dont buy it and it is an atrocious situation to allow the rich to get richer and keep the playing field from ever being level. the ruling over the score clock still rankles me along with all the other petty stuff that goes on.

thanks MC for letting us play along, continue your fine job. ;-) mine does too and i hate them.

Ken Strickland

February 25th, 2010
6:57 pm

ASTRO JOE-you should seriously consider getting a job with the Republican party because you really love spinning BS.

DANIEL-everyone, especially NBA players, coaches and GM’s, aren’t as dumb or as deep in denial as the majority of you WOODY LOVERS appear to be. They study film, watch from the bench, hear about it from their coaches during meetings and notice who they’re playing against when on the court. COMEON DANIEL, FOREST FOR THE TREE’S, FOREST FOR THE TREES.

Ree Roe

February 25th, 2010
6:58 pm

MC, are there any other players the Hawks would consider adding?

-REEmind me who’s Roe???

Ken Strickland

February 25th, 2010
7:07 pm

DOC-the NBA will always be willing to make it possible for the rich teams to get richer. After all, it’s the rich teams that are willing and able to go over the salary CAP, and incur the luxury tax, which they pay directly to the NBA.

Astro Joe

February 25th, 2010
7:20 pm

Strickland, you need to adopt the Democrat’s motto:

YES WE CAN!

Stop hoping for Woody to fail… because if Woody fails the whole team fails. Just because you can see Philips Arena from your backyard, it doesn’t make you a basketball expert.

Does any of that sound familiar? KEEP HOPE ALIVE :twisted:

Joe

February 25th, 2010
7:38 pm

The Hawks need him more than any other team.

MyView

February 25th, 2010
7:41 pm

I too thought it to be a slam dunk as far as Big Z going back to Cle, but if he has to wait 30 days along with the fact that his reduced role will be reduced even greater with the addition of Jamison.

MC… How many players do the Cavs have on their roster anyway? Seems like they should be at or near the maxium number of stuffed suites unless Z would mean waiving someone else.

vava74

February 25th, 2010
7:51 pm

MC,

if I’m not wrong, you beefed up your post after my comment overruling it (the commentary).

Basically I think you should focus on surveying any rumours on other possible (and actually viable) buy-outs rather than just joining the “normal media” band wagon (as a beat writer I am giving you the credit of beeing an actual reporter and not just a “re-writer of AP news’ feeds).

Najeh Davenpoop

February 25th, 2010
8:17 pm

“Marvin was the prospect that Durant was, that is why he was drafted #2 in the draft ahead of two of the best point guards of this generation. The Hawks were not the only team in the league who rated him so high. He was not projected to be the scorer Durant was, but I remember comparisons to guys like Kevin Garnett. Durant was used becuase of you constantly bringing up Marvin’s age.”

Criticizing Marvin for being a mediocre player is fine, and I am right with you on that. Criticizing him for his draft status at this point is pointless. He didn’t put a gun to Billy Knight’s head and force him to draft him #2 overall. Expecting him to live up to Durant or whoever is an exercise in futility.

What we need to be hoping for at this point is that Marvin will develop into a consistently reliable player, which he still has not become. I would love to see him be our Bruce Bowen, a guy who will lock down the opponent’s best perimeter player, who will space himself well on offense, who won’t turn the ball over, and who will be automatic from 3. The Hawks would be so much better at pulling out close games if he could do those things.

Najeh Davenpoop

February 25th, 2010
8:19 pm

And also, Durant scored 25 points per game in college. Marvin didn’t even start. Not all #2 picks are created equal, since not all drafts are created equal.

JohnnyWalking

February 25th, 2010
8:49 pm

Good ole Danny Ferry working the loopholes. They had this deal set probably a month ago. We are gonna cut ya, but bring you back when you get waived because no other team in the League has enough cap space to sign you off waivers. The NBA needs to wipe this out with the next CBA. The CAVs players get ALL of thier money up front?? No monthly paychecks??? Yeah ole Ferry working the system.

JohnnyWalking

February 25th, 2010
9:18 pm

Now Shaq is out with a thumb injury for 3 to 6 weeks. WOW!! What IF Big Z sticks it to the Cavs and goes with another team NOW. WOW!!!

Ree Roe

February 25th, 2010
9:25 pm

True indeed Shaq has been diagnosed with a severely sprained thumb & will miss the rest of this game vs. BOS, but they haven’t set a timetable for how long he’ll be out, yet. The Big Z race just got more interesting…

-REEad up on Roe!!!

Najeh Davenpoop

February 25th, 2010
9:28 pm

JeJe

February 25th, 2010
10:06 pm

This pathetic ownership took 2 months to sign Joe Smith TO A VETERAN MINIMUM CONTRACT?

Does anyone here actually think we are getting Ilgauskas?

No. We have the worst ownership in sports and a dreadful GM who has no sense of urgency when he talks. he almost thinks we are title contenders this year and no one is leaving in free agency

Melvin

February 25th, 2010
10:25 pm

I’m glad the Hawks didnt sign Rasheed. That joker is lazy….

Najeh Davenpoop

February 25th, 2010
11:02 pm

I find it hard to believe that people still rank the Celtics with the elite in the East. As much as I pile on the Hawks when they blow winnable games like they did on Sunday, the Celtics have been equally capable of losing focus on a grand scale this year, like in tonight’s game. I would firmly place that team as the 4th best in the conference. The Chuckster claims there’s a huge gap between the East’s top 4 and the rest of the conference, which is true, but there’s also a significant gap between the top 2 and the 3-4.

Truth-Serum

February 25th, 2010
11:06 pm

Mr Cunningham its a free country and we have freedom of speech and some times we have freedom of press. The humorous link connecting the “Bubba Crew” with a klan rally is nothing knew. In fact long before you got here the Bubba Crew was reference as messengers of hate for their irrational, unfounded and emotionally charged spewing of constant hate toward Mike Woodson. That link was taken from the ajc on the very day of posting. If it wasnt censored from the ajc I see it as unfair of you to censor it from this page. It was actually and accurate description of Ken Strickland’s Bubba’s Crew venom. I see you too, have joined the Bubba posse.

Ok. Hate on.

It would be better if you would just extend my woody.

Perhaps you can extend my Woody.

Grandad

February 25th, 2010
11:16 pm

Sybil:

I’m sew glad your back. I new ewe wood be return sooner are later.

Grandad

February 25th, 2010
11:18 pm

niremetal

February 25th, 2010
11:22 pm

MC,

I’m not entirely clear on why the Hawks would not have a salary offer advantage with Z. As I understand it, all Cleveland and Dallas can offer him is a prorated minimum salary (similar to what Mario is getting, but a higher dollar amount for Z since he’s a 10+ year vet) – and the prorated minimum salary would obviously be lower than the prorated MLE or BLE.

I mean, I can see why the extra money wouldn’t make a difference…I think this is all academic because I highly, highly doubt a guy like Z who has made more than $120M in salary in his career but who doesn’t have a ring would come to an unfamiliar team with a smaller chance of winning a title just to make an extra $1M. But saying it wouldn’t make a difference is different than saying we aren’t in a position to offer a few bucks more.

Ree Roe

February 25th, 2010
11:22 pm

I agree Najeh. The Celtics are being mentioned as a title contender only based on name recognition. There’s no way they last past the 2nd round this season, no matter who they play. And they might struggle to make it out of the first round this yr too. TOR or CHI could potentially beat BOS in a series. If the Hawks can win the division & play BOS in the 2nd round semifinals, I could definitely see us in the conf finals

-REEcycle your Roe!!!

Grandad

February 25th, 2010
11:40 pm

With ‘Z’ he gives us a chance even against the Big [2]. Didn’t say we would be favored or anything of that nature. But a chance ‘is a chance’.
Does Wdsn know how to best utilize him on offense? Can Wdsn integrate
the components offensively for us to gain an advantage?

vava74

February 26th, 2010
3:34 am

The Cavs are in most games better off without Shaq ( this game was a good example ) and the Celts were without Pierce.

So, don’t go overboard on this.

tom

February 26th, 2010
7:21 am

Hawks will not get the big man.Just like the Braves did not get Damon. They won’t win the bidding war. A-Typical Atlanta.

Required Reading | Hard Knox Sports

February 26th, 2010
7:36 am

[...] Hawks going after Big-Z. [AJC] [...]

atlantafan

February 26th, 2010
7:55 am

Getting big Z would be the player we would need to make a push for Orlando and possibly the difference in making it past the first round in the play-offs. Make whatever offer you can……and just hope it doesn’t get blocked by some owner from Boston…………Remember Joe Johnson?

O'Brien

February 26th, 2010
8:01 am

Thanks for the response MC.

Doc Rivers must have taken a page out of Woody’s playbook. The Celtics had 18 pts in the 3rd, and 14 points in the 4th quarter last night. (For the record, I did not see the game). If you’re a Celtics fan, you must be very disappointed that the only move they made was to trade for Nate Robinson.

@ Traceman,

“Second, PLENTY of players figure it out late. Chauncey Billups, Gerald Wallace, Steve Nash, Antonio Daniels, Brendan Haywood, Chris Kaman and Hedo Turkoglu come to mind right off the top of my head as talented players who didn’t approach their best play until later in their careers.” Traceman

What I would ask is how many of these guys received starter minutes from year 2 in the league? And also, how many of these players approached their best play with the same team and same coach that drafted them?

@ Najeh

“If Ilgauskas is brought in, it will and should be as a reserve whose minutes vary depending on the matchup”.

I dont think Woody has mastered the art of varying minutes depending on the matchup.

Rick Sund did not add any players last year (when our bench was Flip, Mo and ZaZa), so I will be very surprised if he adds anybody this year. I hope the right person gets bought out somewhere so the Hawks can add him though, because our bench is weak, and if Crawford gets hurt (or continues to struggle) we could be in trouble…

B Ray

February 26th, 2010
8:18 am

You guys are too hard on Zsa Zsa in earlier post…..he is very solid off the bench and adds and attitude and energy that we need. There is enough room for both Big Zs. Zsa Zsa has NOT lost it.

Sarah

February 26th, 2010
8:19 am

it’s the democRAT party that does all the lying Ken Strickland!

rob

February 26th, 2010
8:31 am

yesterday i saw Leon Powe come off the bench for the Cavs, how many big men do they need?

rob

February 26th, 2010
8:31 am

at least the Celts lost last night

Astro Joe

February 26th, 2010
8:47 am

Celtics shoot something like 3-21 in the 4th quarter last night. So does Doc Rivers need to hire an offensive coordinator, does Ainge need a new head coach or is it possible that the Cavs know how to suffocate an offense over a 12-minute spurt? I think it is the latter, as we saw a few months ago when they stood on our throats inthe 4th quarter.

joeBjoe

February 26th, 2010
8:57 am

and the cavs did that without Shak and Z! Astro JOe

gwite

February 26th, 2010
9:09 am

During the Boston-Cleveland game, did you guys hear the discussion among the announcers on how teams manage the player rotations?

It’s not always so cut and dried as: “12 players on the roster, 12 players regular burn time”.

Astro Joe

February 26th, 2010
9:32 am

joeBjoe, the Cavs are much more dangerous with Varejao at center and anyone of their 47 athletic PFs. That team is STACKED like Pamela Anderson.

gwite, yes I did hear that discussion with Fratello. Sounds like coaches prefer a line of delineation between the first 8 players and the last 4. He indicated that there could be team conflict if each player believes they deserve playing time. If you have a clear 8-9 players who are much better than the rest of the roster, then it is easier for a coach to give the more talented players time and the less talented guys won’t be disgruntled. At least, that’s how I interpreted the conversation.

The funny thing was at the end of the Cavs blow-out win, Hickson was on the floor with Leon Powe (now teammates) and in two consecutive defensive possessions (again, after the starters were off the floor and it was garbage time), Powe and Hickson each grabbed the defensive rebound and were playing tug-of-war trying to take the ball from each other. It was like Hickson was thinking “I’m a former starter, this is my board” and Pose was saying “I’m just getting back from injury re-hab and I need to put some stats on the board, this is my ball”. You could hear the Cavs bench yelling “same, same” as in same team. I thought to myself, well, Cavs obviously have crooed that 8-9 quality player guideline.

TXHawk

February 26th, 2010
9:54 am

What’s wrong with LARRY HUGHES?

Melvin

February 26th, 2010
10:41 am

TXHawks,

The Hawks would have to spent money to bring in Larry unlike Big Z who they know is going back to Cleveland. Hawks management is just trying to look good in front of the their fans. They dont want to spend money on a 14th roster spot… huh

O'Brien

February 26th, 2010
10:42 am

AJ,

Was it you who suggested getting Leon Powe and giving him the time to recover because it would be like a trade deadline addition? I know that he’s 6′8″, but I dont know much about his game. Maybe he could have been another backup SF option for us.

The problem for the Hawks and our bench is after the first 6 players, we dont know what to expect from bench player 7 and 8 (much less 9 and 10). Hopefully our 7 and 8 (ZaZa and Mo) will step their games up.

Melvin

February 26th, 2010
10:44 am

Nice breakdown on max salary for the upcoming season…

http://www.hoopsworld.com/Story.asp?story_id=15420

GeeMack

February 26th, 2010
10:56 am

O’Brien

If you’re a Celtics fan, you must be very disappointed that the only move they made was to trade for Nate Robinson.

I actually thought that was a very good move. I hate the Celtic with a passion, but for them to have the same record as the Hawks, with all the injuries they’ve dealt with is very good.

I think niether of the top 3 teams are going to want to see them in the 2nd round if they are healthy. They are now 9 deep with Nate at the point (Nate, Daniels, Sheed, & Big Baby).

Traceman

February 26th, 2010
11:18 am

@ Rod,

Marvin was nowhere NEAR the prospect that Durant was. It wasn’t even close. Greg Oden was considered to be the best big man prospect since Shaq and many felt that Durant was a better prospect than he was. Durant would have went first in most of the drafts in the past decade. LeBron, Oden and MAYBE Yao and Dwight Howard were considered better prospscts than him but that’s it. Marvin was nowhere near that group as a prospect.

You said:

“Second, out all of the guys you listed, I will only compare Hedo Turkoglu, and Gerald Wallace because they play the same position, and since you have so much basketball knowledge, you should know that point guard and center are much harder positions, and require a little more skill than a wing player.”

In the very next paragraph, you said:

“Third, I don’t know how you define talent. Marvin was drafted based on potential or upside, not talent. He was not more talented in basketball than Chris Paul or Derron Williams.”

What you SHOULD have said is that I will only compare Hedo Turkoglu, and Gerald Wallace because they play the same position…UNLESS IT SUITS MY ARGUMENT THAT MARVIN IS A BUM.

Even if I agree with you that PG and Center are more difficult positions to learn, it doesn’t change the fact that those guys didn’t start to reach their potential until 5 or 6 years into their careers. Chris Paul, Derrick Rose, Tyreke Evans and Steph Curry are just the latest examples of PGs who were effective pretty much right away. Just because they were good right away however doesn’t mean that other guys can’t develop later and be great players as well.

How do I define talent? I define talent virtually the same way that Wikipedia does:

“Talent is generally considered to be an innate, personal gift possessed by relatively few people. In essence, someone with talent has an aptitude to do certain things. Talent (in the sense of natural ability or giftedness) is not the same as skill, which is a learned process, and one which is enhanced or inhibited by an underlying talent.”

You are confusing talent with SKILL and I agree that Paul and Deron Williams were and are more skilled than Marvin. As for Mo, he is not more talented, skilled or athletic than Marvin. Period. Even while Marvin is in a slump.

Other teams guard Marvin with smaller players at times because they have to put the bigger player on our 6′7″ 240 lb All Star SG. If Mo Evans is out there with Marvin in stead of JJ, I GUARANTEE you the smaller guy will be on Mo.

As for Mo and Zaza, in the best years of their careers, they produced numbers close to what Marvin produced THIS YEAR in the worst year of his career but their career best numbers are not close to what Marvin did last year. At age 22 no less.

As for J Smoove, he DID have a down year last year and he was our best player in the playoffs but considering that JJ, Al and Marvin were all hurt to the point that none of them would have been playing against CLE, is that really saying much? His numbers of:

42% fg, 13% 3pfg, 17.1 ppg, 7.5 rbg, 2.2 apg, 1.6 bpg and 1.0 topg were not all that. He is LIGHT YEARS better this year.

I continue to support Marvin because he is a great kid and because I beleive in his talent. His SKILLS are still developing but I believe he will get there.

Traceman

February 26th, 2010
11:27 am

@ O’Brien,

Chauncey, Kaman and Haywood all got significant PT early just like Marvin because like Marvin, they played on bad teams who had nothing to lose by playing them big minutes.

Turkoglu and Wallace were in a similar situation to the one that Teague is in right now. You can throw Jermaine O’Neal in that mix too. They were all on very good playoff teams who didn’t have the luxury of letting them play through their mistakes.

Astro Joe

February 26th, 2010
11:46 am

OB, yes I had mentioned Powe last year. He is a true tweener… size of SF but the game of a PF. He is EXTREMELY physical, plays hard-nosed defense and is a very good rebounder. His offense is mostly put-backs from offensive rebounds. Dude is tough as nails. Unlike most tweeners, he isn’t “thick” but he looks rock solid.

Honestly, I doubt that Sund felt like he had the payroll to “gamble” that Powe would get healthy and be well enough for the playoffs. Especially if the Hawks were determined to have 13 roster spots for most of the season. You really can’t add a player who you know will take 50+ games to recover from a massive injury if you’re only signing 13 players. Cavs were able to pay him to rehab for 50 games and spend the rest of the regular season getting in basketball shape for the post-season.

Anyway, the Cavs have about 47 PFs on their team at this point. And they all have a passion for getting the rebound/loose ball. Muct be nice.

darrell starks

February 26th, 2010
11:47 am

The Hawks need big Z in order 2 even have a chance at the big three.
GO HAWKS!!!!!!!!

Michael Vick

February 26th, 2010
11:48 am

Surgeon: No place for pit bulls, rottweilers around children-AJC

darrell starks

February 26th, 2010
11:49 am

Marvin has lost confindence in his game, woody should try 2 bring him off the bench.
GO HAWKS!!!!!!!

Ken Strickland

February 26th, 2010
11:50 am

ASTRO JOE-without knowing it you’ve hit the nail squarely on the head when it comes to why I have issues with Woodson’s approach to coaching and dealing with players.
(1) YES WE CAN be a much better team overall,
(2) YES WE CAN be more competitive against Cleveland and Orlando,
(3) YES WE CAN install and utilize a more advanced halfcourt OFF philosophy and system than ISO Joe and Crawford,
(4) YES WE CAN come up with a better DEF philosophy than Woody’s beloved switching DEF,
(5) YES WE CAN utilize our bench more extensively and effectively,
(6) YES WE CAN employ more effective strategies, adjustments and flexibility, especially during gms,
(7) YES WE CAN run more, put more effort and committment into developing our young players,
(8) YES WE CAN get more production out of our PG position than we’re getting from MBibby,
(9) YES WE CAN do a better job of winning on the road, especially against teams that are shorthanded or not very good,
(10) YES WE CAN do better than Mike Woodson as our HC.

As usual, you are wrong about the nature of my issues with Woodson and have been obviously influenced by wishful thinking. You have never read anything by me that in any way indicated I’ve wanted him to fail. My constant complaints about him have been about me wanting him to become a better HC overall, and do a better job in the many things he’s so far refused to give much attention to.

My contention all along has been this is a much better team than it’s record, statistics and overall performance has indicated. And, for this team to reach its full capabilities, we have to get more than we’re getting from HC MWoodson. If he can’t step it up and overcome his personal and/or coaching issues and help this team reach it full potential, THEN FIRE HIS A$$.

BUT TO CLAIM, OR EVEN INFER THAT I WANT HIM AND/OR THE TEAM TO FAIL IS TOTAL BS.

Clyde

February 26th, 2010
11:55 am

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

Ken Strickland For Blogger Of The Year 2 Years Straight

Traceman

February 26th, 2010
11:57 am

@ Gee Mack,

I guess you can look at it as BOS is doing well considering their injuries in relation to the Hawks but I don’t because I EXPECTED them to have to deal with injuries. Age and injuries ARE going to be a larger factor for a team that has a core of older players.

Danny Ainge knew he was making a deal with the devil when he traded for KG and Ray Allen and that at some point, he would have to pay up. That time appears to be upon him. I think the Celtics’ best case scenario gets them to the ECF but that’s only if everything goes perfectly for them.

When you say IF they are healthy, the likelihood of them being unhealthy is FAR greater than it is for CLE, ORL or us. They are not good enough to rest KG, Pierce, Allen and Sheed for the playoffs and the more they play them, the more likely they are to get injured or just worn down. Injuries just don’t heal as fast in your 30’s as they did when you were in your teens and 20’s.

Just last night, they were able to hang with CLE for a half but they ran out of gas. It is going to get HARDER not easier down the stretch and once the playoffs begin.

Ken Strickland

February 26th, 2010
12:04 pm

DARRELL STARKS-at this point, I have to agree with you on bringing Marvin off the bench. However, what good would it do if there’s no effort to include him in the OFF with the 2nd team?

It appears your boy ABiedrins’ confidence and overall gm is falling apart. Last night, he played like a rookie playing in his 1st gm and scared out of his mind. How many easy putbacks did he miss right at the rim? He reminded me of SF Ken Norman, a former Allstar that came over in the DManning/DWilkins trade. He lost complete confidence in his ability to make FT’s, and stopped doing what he did best, and that was taking it to the basket. To avoid getting fouled, he became a jumpshooter, which he wasn’t good at. After leaving the Hawks, his career ended.

O'Brien

February 26th, 2010
12:05 pm

GeeMack,

I think it was a good move for them too. But I just cant imagine that team being healthy in the playoffs.

What did Charles Barkley say? I might be paraphrasing here, but he said something along the lines of ‘everyone is waiting for the Celtics to get healthy. But old people dont get healthy’. And thats a big problem for the Celtics. They are old.

Ray Allen is old, KG has a lot of wear and tear on his knees (with injuries 2 years in a row), and Pierce has been dinged up. Thats their big 3.

darrell starks

February 26th, 2010
12:14 pm

KEN yeah i no biedrins dont look like the same player he once was, it like he trying to protect his injury from early in the season.
GO HAWKS!!!!!!!!

Traceman

February 26th, 2010
12:19 pm

Ken S,

Biedrins is struggling with his confidence worse than Marvin right now. WAY worse. Did you see him at the FT line? He made the first one with one of the ugliest, most-hesitant looking shots I’ve ever seen. It was if he PRAYED it in the basket. The second FT barely drew iron.

I’m sure Nellie KILLING him in the press isn’t helping either. He looks FURTHER away from getting his game back rather than closer. The scary thing is that MANY posters (both here and on other sites) proposed trading either Smoove or Horford (mostly Smoove) so that we could have a “True Center.” What a screw up that would have been!

darrell starks

February 26th, 2010
12:20 pm

O yeah KEN be careful when using the word YES WE CAN, there is a hidden agenda behind that.
GO HAWKS!!!!!!!!

Michael Cunningham

February 26th, 2010
12:29 pm

@vava: (*sigh*) dude, it is not “jumping on the media bandwagon” to report that Zaza’s agent says he will consider other teams. i leave it up to smart readers like you to decide whether it’s BS or not. but your suggestion to ignore the story frankly doesn’t make much sense. my boss tells me this blog post is among the most popular of the month on all of ajc.com. so while you think it’s a waste of time others obviously disagree. why does this story offend you so much? at the very least it gives you an outlet to tell everyone else how they are stupid for reporting it, reading it, and caring about it, so that’s something.

@myview: the Cavs would have to waive someone to make room for Z.

@truth-serum: neither i nor the AJC can “censore” you. only the government can do that. when a media outlet decides what it will allow in its pages, on its Web site, in its comment section, etc. it’s called “editing.” as i’ve stated before, i am a big believer in the marketplace of ideas. so say what you want, but if others decide it’s garbage or does not meet their standards, don’t get all “my rights have been violated!” about it (unless it is the government or one of its agents).

Fundamentals

February 26th, 2010
12:41 pm

MC

Settle down. Don’t let a few opinionated hot heads get you so rattled. They have a right to their opinion, you have the job to report any and all news, and everyone has a right to agree or disagree.

Big Z is most likley going to Cleveland. We all know that. We all know they’ll waive a player. He is a good option for us, but not the solution. If he started he’d allow us to go big for about 1/2 the game. We could test the usefullness of Al & Josh at new positions and use Marvin more with Crawford. He would be a good big to clog the middle, but he’s too old to play the whole game and he’s never been known for defense or rebounding. I’d admire the pickup, but let’s not get too excited.

We need info on who else is going to be available. Folks talk about Mike Miller, they talked about Hughes? Who else can we consider?

We need focus, intensity & defensive effort more than we need Big Z. He’d be great, but as I stated above, not the entire answer to our equation.

Fundamentals

February 26th, 2010
12:49 pm

I can hear and echo alot of Ken’s thoughts on our team. Folks on this blog like to lump you into a “Crew”. I don’t know which crew I’m in cause they flip flop all the time.

To me Ken is pointing out what I feel like I’m on a soap box about. Woodson has the potential to do something great with what he has. The raw potential is at time exceeding him. He too is young and growing. He’s got to take that step of faith to push the team to it’s maximum potential. He and they have the talents and abilities. Both have the unique opportunity to learn and grow together into something scary to the rest of the NBA.

The problem is folks are impatient. The contract is nearing it’s end. We’ll all know what’ll happen either way after the playoffs. I just pray Woodson does everything he can to show us what he has. He’s gotta leave it all on the table. Regardless of the outcome he can be proud of what he’s accomplished here.

We all bashed Billy Knight. He made his mistakes. Often he looked like an idiot, but he deserves alot of credit for what folks praise on this blog every day. He put 90% of this together with Woodson. Too bad folks are too “What have you done for me lately” to notice.

Future is bright. I just hope everyone gives it 100% so they can go home knowing there was nothing left that they could do. If they do, good things will follow.

Looking forward to a great matchup tonight!

O'Brien

February 26th, 2010
12:57 pm

Any ideas on who Cleveland will waive to make room for Big Z?

Ken S,

One thing I agree with is that as good as the Hawks have been, they can be so much better. Its like when your child comes home with a B+ on their paper, which is a really good grade. But in your mind, you know that they were capable of getting an A+ if they had just done a couple other things differently.

On the flip side though, that can probably be said for all the teams in the NBA except maybe Cleveland and the Lakers. All the other teams have lost winnable games (including games against our Hawks).

That being said, our playoff performance will determine Woody’s fate.

Melvin,

Thanks for the hoopsworld link. With Miami potentially being the only team that can afford 2 max players, that will be great for them.

Because South Beach + DWade (assuming he resigns) + Pat Riley = very convincing recruiting tools

Daniel

February 26th, 2010
12:59 pm

MC- Thanks for answering my question yesterday about the Hawks motivations. I don’t mind being confused with AstroJoe (now he might) but I was the one who asked those questions. I don’t know what is up with Vava right now either. I think that GS game really got him riled up. The guy is one of our better bloggers. You may have not had enough time to notice but this is not typicla vava. Not that he asked or needs me to defend him in anyway.

Daniel

February 26th, 2010
1:01 pm

Fundamentals- you can be in my crew!! Although, I don’t know what our crew is or is made of. Billy Knight did some good stuff, clearly. But, the Sheldon draft pick and his overall dismissive treatment of the fans (and media) were way too much to take.

Daniel

February 26th, 2010
1:05 pm

I haven’t heard any more talk of Mike Miller getting bought out, but I would hope the Hawks would jump at the chance to get him. Anyone heard anymore from the Miller front?

O'Brien

February 26th, 2010
2:07 pm

Daniel,

The Marvin over CP3 and Deron and then Sheldon over Roy (or for that matter, anybody else) will always bring BK down. The Chills over Deng (and maybe Iggy too) is also debatable. And his signing of CP3’s injury plagued backup.

But BK did do some really good stuff. Getting JJ, trading for Bibby, signing ZaZa from Milwaukee, and drafting Josh Smith.

But Sund’s moves (except for Crawford) are not looking so great right now either. Sund resigned Marvin, resigned Bibby, resigned ZaZa, gave Mo Evans a 3 yr deal, and could not work out a deal with Chills, so now we are stuck with Mo as our backup SF.

The good thing for Sund, the Hawks, and us fans is that all these guys have a chance to turn it around.

Astro Joe

February 26th, 2010
2:16 pm

Strickland, much like the audacious hoper if finding it harder to deliver on all of the promises that “can” happen, I think that it is very challenging to be all that you can be when 29 others are trying to keep you from being all that you can be. Also, how many teams fully optimize their potential? If I look at it on a cost per win basis, I’m sure that both the Cavs and Lakers should be virtually undefeated given the investment in their rosters.

So while I agree that there is room for improvement, I think that will ALWAYS be the case. One of the 30 teams will win the championship but each team (including Cavs and Lakers) have had to endure rough spots in the season. So even they can be doing better. If you plan on criticizing the Hawks coach until they can no longer “do better” then you need to hope that healthcare reform passes soon, because you will likely suffer from some serious arthritis, carpel tunnel and all other kind of maladies from over-blogging.

GeeMack

February 26th, 2010
2:38 pm

Ken Strickland

Dominique for K. Norman & Danny Manning = Robbed the Hawks of their best chance to win a title in the 90’s.

Lol. It took me a long time to get over that one.

Truth-Serum

February 26th, 2010
2:42 pm

Mike Con & Ham, there is a massive difference between editing and censoring. The point is irrelevant to argue. I don’t find your slant interesting but typical of the Bubba-ites on this page, which is not the view shared by the vast majority of the hawks fans. If the AJC has published it, then certainly it meets the “standards” of the AJC. You very statement is contradictory and dis-covers your deceit about censor vs editing. Im not really interested in engaging in conversation with you. Here again is the Bubba crew recruitment for this blog page. Why dont we call it an expose?

http://www.ajc.com/news/kkk-plans-rally-in-306943.html

Extendez My Woody!

GeeMack

February 26th, 2010
2:49 pm

GeeMack

February 26th, 2010
3:00 pm

“Danny Ainge knew he was making a deal with the devil when he traded for KG and Ray Allen and that at some point, he would have to pay up. That time appears to be upon him”

If “paying for it” means a championship, 2 60+ win seasons, and 50+ win season…I’ll sign the Hawks up tomorrow.

As a long time Hawks fan I want the city to experience something it never has…an NBA Championship.

Traceman

February 26th, 2010
3:01 pm

O’Brien,

BK certainly made his share of mistakes (I was ready to KILL him at the draft party when he took Shelden over Roy) but at the end of the day, if you look at the whole, he did a very good job of creating a team that fit his vision.

If you look at it individually, he screwed up royally picking Marvin over Paul/Williams, Shelden over Roy/Gay and Chillz over Deng/Iggy. I would probably throw Acie over Stuckey in there as well. However, the unknown is how those other pieces would have meshed together to form a TEAM. We can all speculate but we really don’t KNOW. What I do know is that as of today, the Hawks have a better record than Paul’s team, Deron’s team, Roy’s team, Gay’s team, Deng’s team, Iggy’s team and Stuckey’s team.

GeeMack

February 26th, 2010
3:07 pm

With Nick Collison playing so well, any chance the Hornets would be willing to trade CP3 for Horford & Teague?

I already it’s wishful thinking. Lol.

Traceman

February 26th, 2010
3:17 pm

GeeMack,

I’d take that too. I’m not saying that Ainge made the wrong decision. I’m just saying that there was obviously going to be a price to pay for trading away draft picks and young talent for older, experienced guys who were toward the end of their primes when he acquired them.

Ainge achieved his desired result – a championship. I’m sure he was hoping for multiple titles but as a Hawks fan, do you know how happy I would be for ONE title?

Now though, Ainge has to deal with an aging team that will be way over the salary cap even after Ray Allen’s $19.7M comes off the books next year. It was great while it lasted but BOS’ run looks like it is coming to an end.