Super commenters Najeh Davenpoop and O’Brien voiced their concerns about the Hawks vs. zone looks after the Heat used one to stymie the Hawks late in the game Saturday. The Mavericks did the same thing to come back and win on Feb. 26, and you’ve got to think the Knicks will show some zone tonight. Why wouldn’t they? The Hawks tend to seize up and waste possessions when they see it.
There’s even less player movement than normal, there are pointless passes around the perimeter and there are rushed shots. Woody has said most opponents back off the zone once the Hawks shoot them out of it. But what about those games like the two recent losses where they don’t shoot them out of it? Then it’s another “We missed good shots” lament after a defeat.
Clearly the Hawks have to figure out something else. So what exactly is the plan vs. a zone? “Good ball movement, attack the defense and penetrate and dish,” J.J. said after the loss to the Mavs. Sounds good. Now maybe the Hawks should try doing it.
– The New York Post says J.J. is “on display” tonight. The story notes J.J.’s good relationship with coach Mike D’Antoni and agent Arn Tellem’s good relationship with Knicks boss Donnie Walsh and speculates that Johnson could end up in New York. New York media desperate for the Knicks to be relevant again clearly covet LeBron–notice how the stories are about LeBron even when they aren’t–but now they seem to be focusing on J.J. as a consolation prize.
– D’Antoni wants to “speed up” the game by possibly giving Toney Douglas more minutes at point guard. Or maybe it will be Sergio Rodriguez. Either way, I don’t have to tell you that “quick point guard pushing the pace” isn’t something the Hawks really want to see.
– T-Mac is questionable because he’s feeling old.
– All Hawks players were at shootaround today and are good to go, reports FSN South/SportSouth Hawks sideline reporter James Verrett. I’m not with the team but will blog off television.
– Talk amongst yourselves, Hawks fans.