Atlanta Hawks: Will they come to praise the Lakers at Philips?

Will they clap for Kobe at Philips? (US Presswire)

Will they clap for Kobe at Philips? (US Presswire)

I’m curious what my blog people think about Woody’s pretty forceful comments about Hawks fans showing too much love for some visiting teams. If you are reading this then you probably aren’t a casual fan; I doubt any of you are heading to Philips in your Kobe jersey. So since Woody probably isn’t talking about you, can you get on board with his view that Philips needs to be more hostile to visiting stars or do you think he’s off base?

Woody first mentioned the topic a few weeks back because he thought support for visiting teams at Philips had increased even though the Hawks are better. I kept the angle in the back of my mind and planned to address it when a marquee team came to town. Well, the Lakers are here and obviously they fit that description.

There’s just something about the Lakers, and I think it goes beyond winning. I spent a decent amount of time reporting on the Lakers in 2004-05 season because they’d traded Shaq to the Heat the previous summer. That was the year it was basically Kobe surrounded by nondescript guys. The Lakers won 34 games and missed the playoffs. But what struck me after following the team was how they still got so much support even though they were also-rans.

I remember going to a shooataround in Orlando and there was a crush of fans in Lakers jerseys trying to get close to the team. At the arena before the game there was a group of probably 200 fans hanging around the tunnel during warmups hoping to get autographs. When I interviewed fans at the Staples Center, they were all so sure (or smug, depending on your perspective) that the Lakers would be good again soon because, as one guy said, “We’re the Lakers.”

At the time, Lamar Odom said he was at first disappointed to get traded to the Lakers from the Heat but eventually embraced the move because of the increased opportunities for exposure in LA. I silently scoffed at that because, well, he was only Lamar Odom. But now I see him in Taco Bell commercials and hugged up on a hot Kardashian and it turns out dude was right.

And, oh yeah, Odom also got a ring.

– Hoopinion looks at USA Today’s story on Josh Childress’ options this summer. In the blog comments, Brett Lagree opines on whether he thinks Woody and J.J.’s futures are tied together:

“I do think that the playoffs will determine whether or not re-signing one or both would be a positive or negative PR move for the organization. I think the very public show of interest in Ilgauskas from an organization that typically doesn’t announce whether they give restricted free agents qualifying offers shows that they’re fairly concerned about appearing* to compete. Ultimately, the decisions on Johnson and Woodson may not entirely be informed by basketball concerns.”

*I’m skeptical they’re interested in the risk and/or cost of actually competing.

MC

184 comments Add your comment

Mel

March 30th, 2010
8:45 pm

Yea i hate when fans cheer for LeBron or Kobe… The Hawks are finally good. Support the HOME team

Najeh Davenpoop

March 30th, 2010
8:46 pm

MC, you touched on something interesting in your article — that Dwyane Wade gets booed even though the rest of the rival stars get cheered. Until the first-round playoff series last year, that wasn’t the case. It sucks one way or another that so many bandwagon fans exist in Atlanta and come to these games, but one thing the Hawks could do to offset this is make these games more of a rivalry. The Heat are rivals now, thanks to that series, and the same applies for the Celtics, who get overwhelmingly booed despite the presence of a few Bostonians here and there. If Zaza and Kobe get into a fight tomorrow, I guarantee you Kobe’s going to get booed the next time he comes here. The crowd may not be unanimously anti-LA next time they come here, but it will be a lot more decisively pro-Hawks.

Mel

March 30th, 2010
8:46 pm

hate when people do it, BUT 1st lol = )

Najeh Davenpoop

March 30th, 2010
8:48 pm

As for Woody, he has every right to feel that way, and he should know that those of us who grew up here and have been dealing with this in Turner Field and the Georgia Dome forever don’t like it any more than he does.

By the way, Lamar’s Kardashian is the least hot Kardashian. Just saying…

Michael Cunningham

March 30th, 2010
8:49 pm

@ Najeh: Zaza vs. Kobe? i’m in! that would be sweet. but, seriously, good point. there needs to be some good, old-fashioned hatred built up.

Ian

March 30th, 2010
8:53 pm

Is it even sold out? How many games has Atlanta sold out this year? Like 6? I am sure half of the “fans” at least will be pulling for LA. It’s only certain type of people who do this. Once a player, or team, is good, those types of fan start liking them just because they are good. When the Bulls were good, you saw Bulls crap all over the place at any time. Once they got bad, those “fans” went away. Sure is funny how that works. The homeboys seem to just pull for whoever is winning.

Michael Cunningham

March 30th, 2010
8:55 pm

@ Najeh: that’s like saying you drive the least expensive Mercedes. i will still take that over my Toyota.

@ Ian: the game has been sold our for a while.

Ree Roe

March 30th, 2010
9:21 pm

I was at the Lakers game last yr & it was fun to watch us handle them clowns. It was ALOT of angry Laker fans leaving Philips & I rubbed it in as loudly & annoyingly as possible to make Laker fans feel as uncomfortable as I could. Hopefully they get booed extensively, but being an ATL native & knowing our “fans”, I expect a mixed reaction all night.

-REEalistically Roe!!!

O'Brien

March 30th, 2010
9:41 pm

MC,

I’m a big Hawks fan, but how much of the problem is tied to the fact that ATL has a lot of transplants from other cities, and for whatever reason, they have not adopted the home team like they should?

I think the best way for the Hawks to get the support is to beat these guys. Going back to Najeh’s point, Boston gets booed, because we beat them all 3 home games during the playoffs, and the games were intense. Plus we swept them at home this year.

If we beat the Lakers and Cavs at home (more consistently), we will win over a lot of these fairweather fans.

northcyde

March 30th, 2010
9:45 pm

There will be at least 8,000 Laker “fans” in the building tomorrow night. It’s going to sound like a high school basketball State championship game.

And it will be sickening.

The poor season ticket base the Hawks have, allows this to happen. People who wanted to attend this game ONLY, probably got their tickets months ago. The usual “walk-up” crowd won’t be there this game. Only the people interested cheering for the Hawks . . and people interested cheering for the Los Angeles Kobes, will be there.

It’s like I wrote on Hawksquawk on Sunday. If it’s ever a game we could use Joe Johnson playing like a SUPERSTAR in, it’s the game tomorrow night. Not just so that his HATERS can get off of him, but also so that he can SHUT UP the Laker/Kobe crowd.

Whether it be with a monster scoring game . . . or a lockdown defensive game . . or a high assist game . . . we need he and this team playing at a high level to keep the bandwagon crowd out of the game.

It’s bad when Lebron comes to down, but it’s 3 times worse when Kobe comes to ATL. For that reason, I’d rather drive to Memphis to see Kobe play the Grizzlies ( and hear 60% of their crowd cheer for Kobe ), than to drive to ATL and hear our fans do it.

Coach D

March 30th, 2010
9:51 pm

Go Hawks! Kick the pompous Lakers A—-!!!! Send the LA fans home angry again. I hate that there are so many “other” teams fans at Phillips, but that’s the way it’s been for years here in the ATL. Eventually the home team pulls out a win & in the process the fans start pulling for their own… most of the time. BE LOUD & OBNOXIOUS HAWKS FAN!!!!!

northcyde

March 30th, 2010
9:54 pm

And let me clarify, before some season ticket hold misreads what I wrote.

The Hawks have a poor season ticket base in numbers. That in turn, makes a lot of individual game tickets available for games.

Normally, the Hawks can rely on a decent walk-up crowd, to get people in the building. I’m simply saying that if our season ticket base was stronger, there will be less tickets for all of those bandwagon Laker fans to get a hold to.

NDiiBaBii

March 30th, 2010
9:55 pm

I’ve been a season ticket holder since I was a youngster and when the Hawks weren’t doing too well it sucked to be around ppl cheering for other teams. Each game I’m in the arena cheering loud mostly by myself when it gets quiet I yell defense & lets go hawks bcuz that’s what fans should do. I wear Hawks gear to every game, if I’m coming from class just a Hawks hat, but I hate feeling like I’m the minority in the arena, I wish there were more true fans who came to the games and supported the Hawks. Woody’s definitely right about how ppl should support the Hawks even when we play teams like the Lakers. I just hope all of u will be there too ;)

dstdeelite

March 30th, 2010
10:13 pm

I’ve always thought it was quite sad that people cheered on opposing teams just because of the “superstar”. Kobe gets it everywhere. LeBron got it a lot last season, but it was toned down a lot the last time he visited. Is is their right as a paying customer, but that doesn’t make me like it any better. For once, I agree with Woody. Go Hawks!!!

Patrick

March 30th, 2010
10:25 pm

Living in Southern California, I can verify that Lakers fans are the scum of the Earth.

HawksFan11

March 30th, 2010
10:45 pm

Someone should tell the Phillips Arena staff this too. I’m a 6-year season ticket holder and they treat Hawks fans like we’re visitors and tell us, “Hey, when LeBron/Kobe/DWade come to town, it’s something special” No exageration there either sports fans, that was a quote.

I’ve writen about how the Hawks get no love outside their house with LeBron billboards right outside the door of Phillips and the local news making them the 5th sports story, if there’s time, but they and their fans can’t even get respect from the keepers of their own house.

SAD!

Hawk n the Ham

March 30th, 2010
11:00 pm

I must admit, Kobe has been my favorite star in the league for the last 10 years. The man is $$.

With that said, no matter who comes into Phillips, I will be one of the LOUDEST Hawks fans in the arena.

ILL-logical

March 30th, 2010
11:08 pm

“I’ve writen about how the Hawks get no love outside their house with LeBron billboards right outside the door of Phillips and the local news making them the 5th sports story, if there’s time, but they and their fans can’t even get respect from the keepers of their own house.”

Its called marketing-influencing consumer behavior and unless/until an organization has the resources/ commitment to do it effectively, then this type of behaviour will continue. While alot of scorn has been heaped upon the player and coaches, the owners bear a great deal of responsiblity for the current state of affairs.Where are the giant banners of Joe,Josh or Al? When are there front page stories on team members and how often commercials featuring Hawks shown other than on he brand x channels?These guys don’t have the cheese to do it right so we are stuck with what we got- 50/50 crowds on big game days.

Dawg in Cali

March 30th, 2010
11:17 pm

hey patrick, i live in SoCal also and i make sure i rock ATL gear all the time. I thought I would come up missing when they lost to boston, i had people not talking to me for weeks. on the blog point if you watch the “fakers” on tv you can hear cheers for them in other arenas but to be honest i really hate when they do it at our house . f@#k the “fakers”

t_height

March 30th, 2010
11:21 pm

Well as everybody should know right now. nearly half of ATL residents are not from Georgia. New York and California have big number of residents who now resides in Georgia. Cleveland, i don’t understand. There has always been a big number of fans at the games when the hawks play the lakers, knicks and celtics.

Michael Cunningham

March 30th, 2010
11:24 pm

@ O’Brien: well, i’m new to the city so hard for me to say. the locals i talk to think the transplant thing certainly is a factor. it was like that in Miami, too. no one there was from there and so other than the Dolphins (who had success early in their history and also had the longest tenure) there wasn’t much emotional attachment to the local teams.

@northcyde: the Hawks say they are No. 1 in individual game tickets. but as you say the season-ticket base is lacking.

@ Ill-logical: interesting points. i can’t really speak on the Hawks’ outdoor marketing because i rarely drive in Atlanta. in Miami along I-95 and the Florida Turnpike there are numerous D. Wade/Heat billboards with whatever the marketing slogan is for that season. D Wade had large banners on downtown buildings. even Shawn Marion once had a large banner on the Miami Herald building, which is very visible because most drivers headed to or from South Beach pass by it. the team was pretty visible with outdoor marketing.

Najeh Davenpoop

March 30th, 2010
11:41 pm

“Where are the giant banners of Joe,Josh or Al?”

For real. Josh Smith in particular is one of the most poorly marketed players in the entire NBA. A highlight-reel player like him would be all over the place on a team with a competent marketing department. We all know he has made plenty of posters in his career, any one of which could be blown up and placed on a billboard. Imagine coming down I-85 south and driving past that building with the changing billboard right before the I-75 merge and seeing J-Smoove getting ready to throw down instead of the Chick-fil-A cows that have occupied that space for 10 years. This is the kind of thing the DASG should be doing. You know, if they weren’t busy suing each other the last five years.

JeJe

March 30th, 2010
11:44 pm

FIRE WOODSON

FIRE SUND FOR RESIGNING DEADWEIGHTS BIBBY AND MARIVN. MARVIN HAS NO PASSION AND NO DESIRE TO BE GOOD

MEDIOCRITY

JeJe

March 30th, 2010
11:44 pm

Watch Marvin’s interviews — listen to the rumors –> The guy does not want to be a star in this league. He is content with being average. He has no fire in his personality/game –> He doesn’t want the ball down the stretch. He doesn’t want plays run for him. He’s frail/awkward. He is not strong…He’s not a good defender.

he is the worst starting SF in the NBA, and Bibby is probably a bottom 5 starting PG

Quick

March 31st, 2010
12:08 am

First of all, forgive me gentlemen. I haven’t been to Phillips yet this season. Cash aint strait. However I did see us beat Boston game 6 two years ago in the playoffs and last year peeped out a win against Miami in the playoffs. Maybe cuz it was post season, but I was impressed by the number of Hawks fans compared to years past. I’ve grown up a Hawks fan and it seemed to me we were gettin better at cheerin for our home town boys. If not, lets tighten up. We got a 50 win season. A-town baby.

sam'l

March 31st, 2010
12:23 am

If the Hawks beat LA and Cleveland, everything will change. If the Hawks beat LA and Cleveland, anything will be possible. The Hawks will be up for LA. That makes this game a tossup. The Hawks will be up for Cleveland. That game will go down to the last 45 seconds, and the Hawks are now prepared to win last-second games. The Hawks will beat LA and Cleveland……or I will face the Undertaker and Shawn Michaels in a Royal Rumble diva tag team ladder winner take all match.

northcyde

March 31st, 2010
12:59 am

Quick . . . I was at Game 6 for Boston. That arena was rockin. The playoffs ( as long as we’re playing a big name ) aren’t the problem. The fans know that those games are the utmost importance. And maybe some of the fans who don’t normally go to Hawk games or may not even be Hawk fans, will attend a playoff game to feel “part of something”. Anybody who was in that building for Game 6, knew that it was a special night.

But thank GOD that we won Game 3 of that series. In Game 3, there had to have been 3,000 Boston fans in that arena that night. I was sitting beside 5 of them just in the row I was in alone. If we’d lost Game 3, that arena would’ve been 50/50 BOS/ATL for that Game 4 . . and we would’ve lost. So when JJ has that 20 point 4th quarter in Game 4, that set the stage for a rowdy Game 6.

This year, if we draw Milwaukee or Charlotte in Round 1, the size of the crowds will be interesting for that opening game. If it’s Miami, they’ll be there, simply because of Wade.

It's Atlanta

March 31st, 2010
1:03 am

What do you expect? Atlanta is full of bandwagon fans. And it’s pretty common place amongst black fans in this town to root for superstars over teams. They loved Jordan in the 90s and now love Kobe and Lebron. They have no loyalty to their hometown. Black fans love the superstars and white fans could care less about the NBA or they still root for their hometown teams from where they used to live. It’s the same story every year in Atlanta.

It's Atlanta

March 31st, 2010
1:08 am

Oh and you can’t say the transplant thing about the Lakers. No one moves from LA to crappy Atlanta. That excuse works for New York, Boston, and Chicago but no one moves from southern cal to Georgia unless they have a gun pointed at them.

Grandad

March 31st, 2010
1:47 am

This post is responding to;
GeeMack / vava74 / & wabe, from last blog
(I wasn’t ducking criticism, I’ve been away all day)

In no particular order in my responses, I should begin by saying to
GeeMack that I would not fire Wdsn for the express purpose of hiring
Izzo. The Izzo remark was intended as a response, I suppose, to the query of who would replace Wdsn if he were not re-signed. I intended
to phrase my “nomination” of Izzo as “If I were looking for a college coach”, to replace Wdsn, Izzo ’seems’ to be the kind who could make the transition.
vava – I totally agree about college coaches who yell & bully:
(former coach Knight)(K-State coach Martin?)+(current Hawks HC Wdsn)
Izzo just seems to have the demeanor to pull it off.
I do agree his teams do not run alot of player motion but do run set plays & they are always prepared.

Geemack again – something about what has Izzo done:
6 Final Fours/in 12 yrs. with 1 NC proves he is a:
*leader*well organized*prepares his teams*causes his teams to focus*
*prioitizes rebounding [fact]*has a sound philosophy [see rebounding]*
*commands respect*wins*wins in post-season*teams handle pressure*
Look I’m not saying he would be coach of the yr.
I’m not saying I would hire the man. If I were “The Decider” on who
would be coaching the Hawks next year, then I would go through a/the process. Interviewing being a key. Izzo would be on my list. Thats all.

Wabe – I agree most college coaches make a poor choice for the pros.
That’s not to say that all are inept and that none should
be considered.

I went to see the Doc today, I call him Gorilla fingers!

Big Ray

March 31st, 2010
2:21 am

Cunningham ,

Absolutely boo the hell out of the Lakers . And Hawks fans should have no problem doing that for a team that has won 30 times in 37 tries at Philips Arena.

Brett Lagree should have a conversation with Niremetal about the ASG. I guarantee it would be more interesting than watching Sam’l trying to run away from his Wrestling heroes…

Najeh has the ASG marketing woes pegged.

Grandad learns one of life’s tough lessons: the longer the finger, the longer the exam. Next time, bring your .357 magnum to the Doctor’s office and make him a deal he can’t refuse.

Cunningham ,

Keep your Toyota. Didn’t you know Kardashians are only high-priced leases, never to be owned? Even high rollers have trouble with the ending payoff…

Big Ray

March 31st, 2010
2:22 am

“Absolutely boo the hell out of the Lakers . And Hawks fans should have no problem doing that for a team that has won 30 times in 37 tries at Philips Arena.”

That would be the Hawks’ home record so far this year: 30-7.

Grandad

March 31st, 2010
2:29 am

Big Ray:
Lesson learned long time ago!
The thing is, this guy most likely saved my life last yr., good guy, but with hands like those he’d make one heck of a power forward.
Used to have a lady doc, barely knew she was back there.
[didn't care either]

Blake

March 31st, 2010
2:49 am

Hawks are going to beat the Lakers despite the fickle Laker fans turning out.You heard It here!

TheAntiMe

March 31st, 2010
6:01 am

It has always been a problem when the Lakers come to town that so many folks are there to cheer for Kobe. Before then, it happened, big time, when the Bulls and His Airness came to town. Although I respect the fact that Kobe Bryant and especially Michael Jordan are all-timers, it still made me want to hurl my waffles.

Unfortunately, the problem is not limited to the Hawks games as there has been a long history where a high percentage of people showing up at Braves games came to root for the Cubs, the Red Sox, and the Yankees.

The best thing that Woody can do is to actually beat some of these teams that he complains that fans are rooting for against our hometown Hawks. It’s kind of hard to root for Kobe if the Lakers are losing by 10 or more and Kobe is being held to half of his usual number of points scored.

jg

March 31st, 2010
7:56 am

it happens at turner field and the georgia dome as well. i was a season ticket holder with the falcons from ‘92 until 2000 and it bothered me so much to see “those” people wearing their–insert team name of whomever was winning–to come in wearing that particular jersey (with a braves shirt underneath) and root for that team.

definitely the bandwagon capital of the world. i called the falcons one year and told them they should make the so-called fans answer a quiz about the falcons or who ever they are playing before they could come to the bandwagon games.

you sure didn’t see those same guys at turner field or fulton county pulling for the sf giants–when the niners were the sh*t, or the cowboy fans at the omni rooting for the mavs–doesn’t matter though because in ‘91, ‘95 and definitely in ‘98 they were all there pulling for the falcons.

typical atlanta–i live in chattanooga and i root for the falcons, hawks and braves in that order–always have always will–my 8 year old ask me the other day if i would ever pull against an atlanta team and i told him only if him or his two brothers are playing for the other side.

go falcons, hawks and braves and bandwagon just make sure you don’t mess up those dr. j, mj, magic, bird, kareem, olajawon, lebron, wade and howard jerseys.

SWAT Native

March 31st, 2010
8:15 am

I can remember going to a Hawks-Lakers game when Kobe was a rookie (played at the Georgia Dome no less pre-Philips Arena) when the Lakers weren’t that good and he wasn’t even really playing yet, and there were already a bunch of Kobe fans with jerseys and signs.

I think part of the reason that you see a lot of support for other teams and players is the transplant issue, but I also think that Atlanta fans are nicer than some other cities and tolerate it. Kobe’s from Philly, but he gets booed every time he comes there, and you probably put yourself at risk coming into their arena wearing his jersey.

GeeMack

March 31st, 2010
8:39 am

It amazes me how the Hawks organization would feel they deserve anything more than the support they recieved.

I have been a Hawks all my life, and as long as I’ve followed them they’ve been a middle of the road team, or a flat out horrible team.

Currently they are not good enough to win a title, and not bad enough to be in the lottery.

They’ve displayed no commitment to winning unless, another team forces their hand (see Smoove free agent deal).

Whenever the chance arrives to show the fans you can compete with the elite teams, you don’t show up (Cavs in the playoffs, Game 7 aginst the Celtics, the last 2 season vs Orlando, and a blowout to the Laker earlier this season).

Give the fans something they’ve never experinced in this city (an NBA title), and you will eliminate the divided loyalties in this city.

Please guys it’s not the fans it’s the organizations. People appreciate excellence, and that’s what the Lakers display….excellence.

i_am_soulstar

March 31st, 2010
8:46 am

I can’t stand sitting next to a clown at the Hawks game cheering for the visiting team. I almost always end up making him/her mad, or vice versa.

I myself have been a fan since ‘05 and I’m not even from Atlanta. That being said, I don’t see anything wrong with bandwagon fans. People are naturally attracted to winners. The Lakers and Celtics have those followings because they have a culture of winning. If the Hawks want that same respect, it has to be earned through consistent winning. Consistency in winning, season in and season out, very rarely comes without ownership’s commitment to win and spend what it takes to win.

They are a great team this year, but they’ve been less-than-great in years past.

Blame it on the economy, on Atlanta having alot of transplants, or anything else you want. But it’s up to the Hawks ownership to demonstrate that they’re willing to spend to create that culture of winning in Atlanta, and to earn the respect of the people. If they add players or spend more money with stated goals of a championship in mind, watch attendance steadily increase.

Having rumors floating about legal battles between ownership and the team possibly being for sale does not send a message of stability.

I love what the Hawks are doing, but it takes more than one 50-win season to demand a packed Philips Arena for 20 out of 41 home games. Stability in ownership couldn’t hurt either.

Give us a Mark Cuban-esque owner and watch the Hawks become permanently relevant in Atlanta.

GeeMack

March 31st, 2010
9:02 am

i_am_soulstar

Great post.

[...] to answer MC’s question as to what the Hawks blog people think of Woody’s statement. I agree with him completely. This has become to common place in Atlanta sports. It is not uncommon [...]

ILL-logical

March 31st, 2010
9:18 am

@cunningham:
Your mention of I-95 brings back memories of my time in your-ami back in the day.Grandmother lived in Liberty City and had big fun during summer visits. different town today ;with some different types of fun.

Maybe you can “suggest” to Mr. Sund that it has been noticed that the marketing efforts by the organization have benn found to be lackluster at best by the fans on the blog.

blazerdawg

March 31st, 2010
9:27 am

The Hawks draw just fine (almost 17K per game at Philips) and have no more opposing team fans in the arena than most cities.

I have been to games of all types in most cities and the only difference in Atlanta is that Atlanta fans are much more polite and laid back than most places, more Atlantans drive a greater distance to attend the game, and the local media (particularly the AJC) is not very supportive of Atlanta fans or teams.

Boston/NY/St. Louis are great for baseball, LA/San Antonio are great for basketball, Den/Chi/Was are great for football, otherwise it is all about the same in pro sports.

Atlanta is AWESOME for college and amateur sports….the argument that Atlanta is a bad sports town is tired.

Fiyah

March 31st, 2010
9:42 am

It’s not like the home grown GA boys and girls are the ones rooting for the out of town team. Don’t forget that Atlanta is home to a lot of formerly out-of-staters. People who are die hard for their former city and still support their old team. I have no problem with them coming to the arena and showing their support.

But if you are a hometown Atlantan, and you root for another team, then you should be banished and sent to you offending teams city to live.

Dr. Kenneth Noisewater

March 31st, 2010
9:52 am

fans need to show tonight- we should sell out every single playoff game as well- no excuses!! agree with Fiyah- i’m born & raised in the ATL- will always support my teams.

blazerdawg

March 31st, 2010
9:55 am

Too funny Fiyah – wear a Cubs of Cavs jersey in Atlanta and you are banished to Chicago or Cleveland….that should shut them up.

Mike is Back

March 31st, 2010
10:09 am

My bad that should have been urge. Heh heh

Barnes

March 31st, 2010
10:09 am

@ It’s Atlanta. That was a very weak analysis on your part blaming the Hawks’ lack of fan support on “Blacks.” Are “Blacks” the reason why Red Sox, Cubs, and Cardinals fans cheer loudly at Braves games? Or why a huge portion of the GA dome will be cheering for the Packers this fall?

Daniel

March 31st, 2010
10:15 am

I think that Najeh hit the nail on the head with his take about the fans needing to build a rivalry. As a long time fan, and season ticket holder, I would agree with Woody’s assertion overall, but I would also say that things have improved greatly with home fans over the last two years. Wade and Boston definitely get no love and the Clevland game was very PRO Atlanta. Now, the Lakers may be a different story, we see them once a year, maybe. If we ever played them in a finals, this town would hate Kobe and the gang, but the novelty is still there. I have a feeling that the crowd will suprise Woody and the AJC tonight, just like we did for the Boston series two years ago. We shall see.

Mike is Back

March 31st, 2010
10:18 am

Well, my post never was submitted…so I caught it.

MC, again great stuff. I have had similar experiences as Najeh…when T Mack was in Orlando…you use to see more of his jersey then you did the Hawks at the game.

However, now I take a great since of pride when I am sitting by the opponent fans…cuz I know when there teams comes to PHILLIPS…they are never guaranteed a win. Like that Boston game…when we went for the sweep…those Boston fans was so quiet…you could hear a roach piss on cotton. lol

THE HAWKS ARE TOUGH TO BEAT AT HOME…it don’t matter whether its LBJ, Koby, or Wade…they have proven that. But, what’s that old saying…everyone loves a winner…the Hawks have to keep winning…everything else will take care of it self…these same fans was coming the Hawks game win they was losing.

Josh is the only one to urge on the crown…if more of the guys would urge on the crown, they would respond…Ryan Cameron could help with that too…but I’m not going to touch that with a ten feet pole. lol

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

Daniel

March 31st, 2010
10:19 am

blazerdawg- I support your 9:27 post. The whole Atlanta sports fans, blah, blah, blah thing gets old and doesn’t truly reflect fans here. Usually these stories are a result of lazy journalism (not you Michael, I understand you are following up a Woody quote and asking for opinions—very reasonable). But, ultimately I don’t care I root for my Hawks, Braves and Falcons whether it is fashionable or not or whether “the media” notices or not. Just win baby!!!

terrell

March 31st, 2010
10:30 am

Lakers are 5 and 5 in their last 10 road games. Lets make it 5 and 6. F… all that other crap about fan support. The Lakers have been an elite franchise for years. They’ve got fans all over the world. And last time I checked, Atlanta was filled with people from all over the world. Duh! Not that big of a deal. Woody needs to stop making up excuses and just Coach.

Barnes

March 31st, 2010
10:44 am

It wouldn’t hurt if the AJC helped build some fan support. I just do not get why the Hawks are never on the homepage of this website. Maybe the discussion should be why the AJC doesn’t support the Hawks.

Michael Foster

March 31st, 2010
10:52 am

There is NOTHING you can do about this. We live in Atlanta, the central hub of the entire South East…where tons of people are coming for work b/c it’s transition from rural industry to business.

People who live here are from Boston, Philly, LA, Chicago, NY, you name it! We are always going to have fans who show up against us.

Plus, I dont want to cross a line here, but there is a truth in minority culture and their interest in specific athletes as opposed to teams. We probably have more minorities show up for games than anyone…and their perception of sports is a lot different than all of those Irish up in Boston who feel the Celtics are the 5 tallest men of their blood line…you know what I mean?

That might sound kind of farfetched…but if you really think about it it’s true. Certain cultures deal with sports in a different way

JuniorBridgeman

March 31st, 2010
11:07 am

The curtain has finally come up for Al Horford. Eveybody keeps saying the Hawks don’t have a center. What most people fail to realize is that Al Horford, based on his last performance against the Indiana Pacers, is the greatest center since Wilt Chamberlain. He completely torched the Pacers with his timed jumpshots all over the court and I believe “Big” Al shot 100% from the floor. Ive never seen that in my entire life. Horford didnt miss one shot all night. AL HORFORD HAS COME OF AGE and I believe he is better than Shaquille O’Neal and almost as good as Wilt Chamberlain. Al Horford is now the secret weapon the Hawks have been missing for years. Horford will make the difference in the playoffs and will make the Hawks a world championship winner.

Hurricane

March 31st, 2010
11:10 am

I will also say that African Americans do tend to follow superstars more than actual teams.

A lot of the fan base here in Atlanta treat the games of the pro teams more as social events than they do actual sporting events, especially compared to other cities.

EW

March 31st, 2010
11:11 am

Makes sense that fans here cheer a lot for other teams….

1. We sucked for a loooonngg time, during that time people cheered for winners and became fans of them.
2. Atlanta is a city of transplants, not a whole lot of native Atlantans to cheer for the Hawks, but plenty to cheer for other big stars.
3. Why is Woody even noticing what the fans are doing? Shouldn’t he be focused on the fact that he’s probably done after this year, that we don’t play defense unless we “feel” like it, that we lose to bad teams and manage to beat good ones…
4. Young kids don’t care who Joe Johnson is, they love LeBron, Kobe, D Wade, etc… we have a good team, but limited star power.
5. The Atlanta Spirit Group is a joke and the fan experince they provide is awful, I can watch at home in HD and enjoy it 10 times more. The ASG also isn’t committed to spending money to win or bring in star power.

EW

March 31st, 2010
11:14 am

Junior…wha??? you for real?

Daniel

March 31st, 2010
11:24 am

Junior- you are hilarious!!!! keep it up.

PMC

March 31st, 2010
11:32 am

When the Hawks start winning people will turn around take off that hideous urine yellow and purple and start cheering for the Hawks.

Eraserhead

March 31st, 2010
11:35 am

I’m coming with my 14 year old son who will be wearing his Josh Smith jersey with pride. BEAT LA!

The Truth

March 31st, 2010
11:37 am

Hawks Fans need to be careful about singling Kobe out and booing him. Yes boo the Lakers team (bad calls, etc.) but please don’t single out Kobe. That just adds fuel to his fire. Do we really want an extra motivated Kobe on our hands tonight? Kobe is the most dangerous when he has something to prove. Since the Lakers have already drop two games (out of their last 3) on this road trip, I’m sure Kobe will want to hurt some feelings in front of a hostile Hawks crowd anyway. So singling him out with boos may not get the desired effect. Last year, we beat the Lakers because they were over confident in a victory and apparently didn’t game plan well. Kobe tried to put on a personal show and loss sight of the prize. This year, the dynamics are completely different. They have something to play for.

Hawk n the Ham

March 31st, 2010
11:50 am

Ryan Cameron should start a BEAT L.A. chant right before tipoff, just to get the crowd in check and loud.

wordy

March 31st, 2010
11:51 am

The Lakers fans are a special breed. I doubt most of them are from LA. For Atlanta the long periods of suckiness caused the basketball fans in Atlanta to choose other teams. This was my experience growing up in Atlanta. LA happens to be an easy team to choose when you don’t want to cheer for your home team. if you sit next to a LA fan tonight ask em if they have ever lived in LA. If not please laugh….hard

Astro Joe

March 31st, 2010
11:58 am

Yesterday on 680The Fan, I heard Mike Gearon suggest that fans should lay-off of Kobe tonight because some players feed off of the negative energy and use that to “go-off”. It was sad and embarrassing to hear our owner essentially say “now y’all don’t make Kobe mad because he will light us up if you do”. At a time that he should be calling for the Hawks fans to treat Kobe like the POTUS at a Tea Party rally, he asks for calm and respectful cheering. An owner should NEVER ask for a dispassionate response toward the enemy from his fan base. Maybe all of that jeering of Kobe will inspire the home team to heights unknown. It seemed to work that way in Game 4 of the Celtics series two years ago. I know I grabbed my pitch-fork and was ready to join Zaza in battling those Beantown B@stards from my cheap seats in the arena.

wordy

March 31st, 2010
11:59 am

Al Horford has logged in as Junior

Hawk n the Ham

March 31st, 2010
12:05 pm

Is Bynum still out on injury?

MsDee

March 31st, 2010
12:11 pm

Hay..I totally agree with Junior..Al is a BEAST!! Very smart, talented, b-ball IQ and I’m grateful to have him on our team. Al, too, has something to prove every day he steps on the floor that he can put up double-double against the best of them. Tonight it’s Pau Gasol and I perdict Al goes 18 and 12 tonight with Hawks win!! Go AL..I’m glad we got u instead of Greg Oden or Durant, for that matter. I believe your position was much needed for us than at SG.

sam'l

March 31st, 2010
12:16 pm

Interesting that the headline sounds very Roman…..and the Lakers used to play at the Forum.

Cheer the Hawks when they deserve it, and give opposing teams credit when they deserve it. Don’t boo unless something happens that is clearly wrong….

I am a Hawks fan and predicting a Hawks victory over both the Lakers and the Cavaliers.

Living on the West Coast for 30 years, I must say one thing about the Lakers…..their radio was the best. Chick Hearn apparently traveled on the team bus or team plane and knew more firsthand about the the players, the coaches, et al than anyone else alive, and he shared this information each and every game. As a result, We KNEW the Lakers, and when something was wrong, Chick would point it out.

I remember Kobe Bryant’s first appearance in a game….late in a game which had already been decided. Chick paused as if to announce a breaking news story…..and said something like, “Ladies and gentleman, this is a kid that the Lakers think will be a superstar of the future and we want to make note of his appearance tonight. ” then a little about Kobe’s history, history…and back into the flow of the game…..”

Pinipoint phophetic accuracy, beautifully and respectfully expressed.

I am a Hawk fan and will be in their corner tonight 100%, Excellence on all levels should be rewarded.

GO HAWKS.

When I was in Boston cheering the Hawks, the nearby fans saw me drinking blackberry brandy and threatened to have me thrown out if I didn’t shut up.

At Golden State, I arrived at haltime to find the Hawks 22 points down, and then something happened I have never seen before that had the entire arena laughing at the Hawks. They were so pissed, they rallied and won the game. I will share this story at some other date.

jf

March 31st, 2010
12:38 pm

the big question is not the fan support for the hawks, but the nba ref support for kobe. will he continue to be allowed to travel and push off before his shot, will he be allowed to slap the arms of the player he guards, and will he get a good call every time someone breathes on him.

coach.com

March 31st, 2010
12:49 pm

I was at the Hawks vs chartlotte bobcats game a very close and exciting game. The majority of the fans just sat there making no noise. I was sitting in the 100 section of phillips arena and as my 9 year old son and myself stood up to cheer on the last seconds of a close game, people behind me was telling me to sit down so they could see. I told them to move farther up, but these are the type of fans we have. I would love to have the home court environment like Utah,Denver,Portland and other up and coming teams. we need to really have a home court advantage no matter who come to visit.

Caz

March 31st, 2010
1:18 pm

I hope we beat the crap out of the Lakers tonight! A good friend of mine was at a Hawks-Lakers game a year or two ago and 75% of the crowd was chanting M-V-P! everytime Kobe touched the ball – disgusting.

I do think the atmosphere is getting a lot better though; I was at the Hawks-Spurs game a couple weeks ago when we won in OT and the crowd was behind the Hawks the whole way, even when they were down big early. I can’t wait to get to some playoff games this year.

GO HAWKS!

northcyde

March 31st, 2010
1:22 pm

Caz . . .and speaking of the M-V-P chant . . . if Joe Johnson is having a monster game, and we’re beating the Lakers . . .the fans should chant M-V-P for JJ late in that game. Don”t let those Los Angeles Kobes fans take over that arena!!

northcyde

March 31st, 2010
1:35 pm

As for the race issue at Hawk games, what people say may be true ( some Blacks cheering for superstars . . . some whites not caring enough at all to even be in the arena ). LOL . .but I have to say that it’s usually the Black and White MALES who are guilty of this.

The most passionate and vocal fans at Hawk games are kids under 12 ( of all races and genders ) and Black females . . . who REALLY get into the game. White females get into the game too, but not like the Black females.

The kid factor is definitely evident on those nights in which we don’t have a marquee named team at Philips. The kids really get into the game, do all of the chants, and know EXACTLY what is going on throughout the game. And if you sit alongside a Black female in Philips, she’s usually complaining about the refs, about the rebounding, and cheering our guys on when they make great plays.

So at least the women and the kids are doing what they’re supposed to do at Hawk games.

SkyWalker

March 31st, 2010
1:55 pm

Again, I am impressed with Al Horford’s game. He has evolved into a true leader and a great professional. Josh Smith is ALMOST there. The maturity is there, Josh just sometimes reverts back to his old ways of dribbling the ball down court like a guard and subsequently TURNING THE BALL OVER AT CRUCIAL TIMES. After Josh makes a fool of himself so many times he will learn he is hurting the time by making those mistakes. When Josh Smith’s game becomes polished the Hawks will undoubtedly compile the best record in the league. Next Season.

terrell

March 31st, 2010
1:56 pm

Why are we talking about color? Black, White, who cares? Nothing good ever comes out of that subject. Drop it! Lets stick to Hawk basketball. PLEASE! If you dont like going to the game, because other teams fans are there, DONT GO! I dont hear the ASG complaining(ticket sales), so why should we? Or why should Woody for that matter? Hell, the Hawks bring on themselves to tell you the truth. They were advertising the Laker game before the freakin season started.

ASG

March 31st, 2010
1:56 pm

Does anyone else get annoyed by the way the announcer yells DEFENSE? It doesn’t sound right to me…

VenomSpitter

March 31st, 2010
2:04 pm

If the jumpers aren’t falling the hawks better take it to the rim. Andrew ByInjuryPronEnum isn’t playing so it should be easy.

terrell

March 31st, 2010
2:11 pm

No way Artest can stop a surging Marvin Williams tonight. lol!

Hawksgirl

March 31st, 2010
2:14 pm

on another note, Do we hate the mavs now since the kid incident?

Hawksgirl

March 31st, 2010
2:16 pm

jj and kobe usually have a shooting match around the 3rd quarter. Maybe it will be crawford vs kobe. interesting

VenomSpitter

March 31st, 2010
2:18 pm

Hopefully JJ doesn’t feel like he has to do everything himself 2nite. I want to see good TEAM effort.

Rod from College Park

March 31st, 2010
2:19 pm

“No way Artest can stop a surging Marvin Williams tonight. lol!”

LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOL

Hawk n the Ham

March 31st, 2010
2:20 pm

If you guys remember last Lakers game, Artest had to leave Marvin and guard JJ, because JJ was scoring at will on Kobe.

Truth

March 31st, 2010
2:29 pm

Yes yell “RAPIST” at Koby everytime he is on the floor.

Hawk fan since the 'pac man' logo

March 31st, 2010
2:31 pm

Not only will I cheer the hawks- I will absolutely try to drown out any of these sissies that have been BEGGING for a good team in Atlanta for years- FINALLY have something really consistant- and they still would rather throw on purple and gold…

Im a supporter of all the local teams, but take a look around- the numbers dont lie, over the past few years the Atlanta Hawks are the better team of all pro sports around here.

northcyde

March 31st, 2010
2:32 pm

I disagree Venom. If JJ has it going tonight, he should ABSOLUTELY try to take over the game. Every other star player does this when they have it going, so JJ should look to do it too.

He can still play the team game, and take the game over at the same time. I’m not going to be mad at JJ at all, if he goes for 31 points – 6 rebs – 7 assists tonight.

For us to advance in the playoffs ( especially in that 2nd round ), he’s going to have to have a few games in which he’s playing superstar basketball.

Jerome

March 31st, 2010
2:35 pm

Woody and players need to shut up and do what they are paid to do. Win a couple of CHAMPIONSHIPS and whoever coach the Hawks or play for the Hawks will not have to gripe about FAN support.

O'Brien

March 31st, 2010
2:41 pm

I agree with AJ. I dont want to hear our owner say take it easy on an opposing player, because you dont want to get him riled up. What? Does our owner not have confidence that our team can beat the Lakers even if Kobe gets riled up?

Let the fans get on Kobe. And if he wants to take it personal, and step his game up? Fine. Woody and the Hawks players need to step their game up so that even if Kobe has 50 points, the important thing is for the Hawks to win the game.

I wonder what is the Hawks home record over the last 3 years against the Lakers, Boston and Cleveland, and Miami? I think if the Hawks can beat these guys consistently at home, the fan support will increase.

northcyde,

I dont care how we win. I just want to win. If JJ has to score 82 pts with 0 assists, as long as we win, thats all that matters. if JJ has 22 pts, 8 assists, and 5 rebounds, thats good too, as long as we win.

Just win baby!

I do think bench play will be critical tonight.

tim

March 31st, 2010
2:47 pm

The RAPIST is in town.

Sautee

March 31st, 2010
2:47 pm

northcyde,

I agree that Joe will have to play like a true star for us to advance. And that would be WITH major contributions from his mates, particularly Horford and Josh.

But here’s my question:

If JJ lays an egg in the playoffs…. let’s say 32% shooting, 16.2 pts, 4.5 ast but 3.9 TO’s, maybe 3.8 reb.

If THIS happens would you still commit to 6 years at max money?

I want us to re-sign JJ, but if he’s had two consecutive years of subpar playoffs does that queer the deal?

And before you say it, yes he was dinged up last year even before he twisted the ankle against the Cavs. And like you, I EXPECT him to come back with a vengeance.

But if he lays an egg……..?

JLo

March 31st, 2010
2:50 pm

Atlanta needs to recognize the Hawks for the true champions they are on and off the court. They deserve all the hype they can get. You never hear about them in scandals and then they hit the court and truly put on a show.

Tim from EP

March 31st, 2010
2:59 pm

I mentioned in another post that the Hawks ownership has a marketing problem. Anytime you have a good product and it doesn’t sell well, you are missing something in your marketing strategy. The Braves haven’t been seriously relevant in a number of seasons now, but they still pull their fan base…easily.

CherryBlossom

March 31st, 2010
3:02 pm

The Lakers have two of the nba most scandalous “THUGS” on their roster. THUG#1 Kobe Bean Bryant was accused of rape a few years ago in a Colorado hotel. To this day we still dont know if Kobe did it or not. THUG#2 Ron Artist got suspended by the league for approximately 70 (SEVENTY) games for going into the stands to assault a fan for accidently bumping Artest and spilling his drink. Artest tried to literally murder someone for mistakingly spilling a drink on him. Artest has a violent temper and he should attend anger management. But instead of doing that, the world champion lakers signed Artest to a contract, regarding Artest for being a THUG. So the Los Angeles Thugs are in town tonight at Phillips arena. At least there is one team playing tonight that isnt soiled and stained.

Shane

March 31st, 2010
3:02 pm

Most ATL fans are just front runners anyway. They cheer for whoever is winning.

I dont see what people see in the Kardashians. Go get yourself a plastic doll. They are about the same thing. Plus the doll might have something to say and a personality.

Tim from EP

March 31st, 2010
3:04 pm

But it also takes part on the sports establishment to embrace the Hawks. Even before the NCAA tournament, I was in a Applebee’s tournament and they had some random college game on on all the TV’s and no Hawks game!

JASon

March 31st, 2010
3:05 pm

So Michael; you are “addressing the issue” by saying how much you support the lakers. Why don’t all you media people just get together and start a GD lakers fan club? What is wrong with the media in this country? Seriously, what is wrong with you people?

Hawk fan since the 'pac man' logo

March 31st, 2010
3:08 pm

Jerome- turning a franchise around from one that won 13 games just a few years back… increasing the win total for 4 consecutive years- making the playoffs for the 3rd year in a row- and advancing to round two last year- and looking at a good shot at the eastern conference finals this year…… is not good enough to ask for a little fan support?

this team has a FANTASTIC home court record this year BTW- maybe Atlanta SHOULD go and witness it.

The Real Deal

March 31st, 2010
3:10 pm

When the Hawks rep tried to get me to renew my season tickets, he offered me some of the mini season ticket package options. His selling point was, “If you take this package you get to see Kobe, Lebron, and D Wade. Or if you take this package you get to see …..” My response to the rep was, “I come to Josh, Al, Joe and all of the Hawks. I could care less about the other team or their players.” This guy thought I was nuts. I am not a transplant. I’ve been a Hawks’ fan since they became the Atlanta Hawks. Maybe Rick Sund and his staff can help us (the fans) out by training the Hawks’ sales reps to sell the Hawks and not the other team’s superstars. That could make a difference!

Hawk n the Ham

March 31st, 2010
3:12 pm

COSIGN!! The real deal

Haywood Jablome

March 31st, 2010
3:15 pm

atlanta loves the larger-than-life superstars – sports stars and other.

atlanta has serious envy and 2nd-rate town jealousy.

Big Ray

March 31st, 2010
3:22 pm

Sautee ,

That’s a hard, tough question. For some folks, it’s a concept that they cannot even imagine. Many stories will be told in the playoffs, which is where I believe all of our truths will be revealed. About the team, the coaching staff, etc.

JohhnyWalking

March 31st, 2010
3:28 pm

I don’t mind the Love for Kobe or Lebron. They are the best. How can you not like them?? The thing people dont understand is that THEY love Atlanta. Atlanta is on the TOP list of every NBA player. They Love coming here. The NBA being 83% Black has a little to do with it.

i_am_soulstar

March 31st, 2010
3:30 pm

Thanks GeeMack.

And Junior, I don’t quite agree with your “analysis” of Al Horford, but I will go out on limb and say that he really is one of the most consistent players in the league.

Call me crazy, but I can’t remember more than 1 or 2 games during the season that he didn’t hit 75% of those little outside jumpshots he loves to take. It’s so methodical, but it falls almost everytime.

Reminds me of Tim Duncan in his heyday..

1968-69 Hawk

March 31st, 2010
3:30 pm

This is a very large money day for Atlanta, which helps our city, so lets now, go beat the defending champion, Los Angeles Lakers.

GeeMack

March 31st, 2010
3:31 pm

CherryBlossom

You must really hate the Lakers? Wasn’t Kobe accused, and the charges dropped?

Jay Dubu

March 31st, 2010
3:33 pm

Winning will make the difference on who’s in the seats, and who they cheer for. It’s already been said that the game has been sold out for a while, so now, the Hawks need to come out and drop one in the “L” column for the Lakers.

If they do this when the big boys come to town, the seats will be filled with more and more people cheering for the Hawks, and booing the visitors.

An aside: Management just wants the tickets to be sold, they don’t care who buys them. “It’s all about the Benjamines!”

Daniel

March 31st, 2010
3:34 pm

Sautee- Easy answer— YES!!! a six year deal at max money will still make Joe only around the 20th highest paid player in the league. A 20,5,5 guy who is coming into his prime with a young improving nucleus, not the time to be shy of committing for 6 more years. Plus, his contract only counts against the cap at years of servic rate not actual salary, which allows us flexability with re-upping with Horford. No other free agent contract gives that flexability.

The real long term plan for this team is to be competing for championship for the next 2-3 years. Remember no one is giving Joe 23-28 milion dollars a year, which is Kobe, Lebron, Wade money, we are talking 16-18 mil per for six years that is very reasonable for a player of his talent, age and attitude (even if he has another bad playoff series).

Bradley and unknowledgable fans will say not to resign him, but they don’t understand the game or the economics of basketball.

Daniel

March 31st, 2010
3:36 pm

Gee- I am not calling for calls of “rapist”, but yeah, the charges got mysteriously dropped after a large out of court settlement that required the defendant to remain silent publically. I’m just sayin’

JeJe

March 31st, 2010
3:47 pm

“I was at the Hawks vs chartlotte bobcats game a very close and exciting game. The majority of the fans just sat there making no noise. I was sitting in the 100 section of phillips arena and as my 9 year old son and myself stood up to cheer on the last seconds of a close game, people behind me was telling me to sit down so they could see. I told them to move farther up, but these are the type of fans we have. ‘

EXACTLY.

I’ve been saying this: NO ONE CHEERS AT THE GAMES UNLESS IT’S TIED IN THE LAST MINUTE, A MEGA SUPERSTAR IS IN TOWN, OR BIBBY/SMOOVE/JOE ARE GOING APESH!T.

WHY DO PEOPLE NOT SEE THIS

Atlsuperman

March 31st, 2010
3:50 pm

Who is to say that everybody in Phillips is a Hawks Fan? Every Good team has Fans Every where. they are called Roadies. That doesnt mean the hawks fans are cheering for the other team that means the other team has fans in the building.

DCHawksfan

March 31st, 2010
3:50 pm

I do not buy any of the arguments that Atlanta has alot of “transplants” from other cities. I have lived in Atlanta, Los Angeles, and Washington DC and EVERY city has transplants. In fact, Los Angeles and DC have many more transplants but that doesn’t stop most of their sporting events from being sold out and fans from going to support the home team. I really hope this city will finally embrace the Hawks and fans will stop using that as an excuse for cheering for the Cavs or Lakes. There really aren’t that many Los Angeles or Cleveland natives in Atlanta. Just give it a rest. And Go Hawks!

Atlsuperman

March 31st, 2010
3:52 pm

Not To mention basketball is not the most exciting crap in the world. . . WHOOOOOO u shot the ball and it went in the hoop. . . big balls. Who Really cares? the only time i watch basketball is if its the Hawks because unless u are a big fan of the game or like a specific team. .. Wat is there to cheer about?

KEEPING IT REAL

March 31st, 2010
3:53 pm

Don’t blame the fans, blame the city and the organization. The city does a very poor job marketing the team. We don’t see any Hawks players on TV commercials, no radio adds, no guess appearances, etc… We have 2 ALL-STARS in the city and you can’t even tell. Spend the money and put the time into showcasing the team.

Atlsuperman

March 31st, 2010
3:54 pm

Are u cheering about the man with the ball had the aim to hit the shoot.? if thats the case, do u cheer when u dont get any piss on the floor?

Westurd

March 31st, 2010
3:54 pm

I’ve been told to sit down a few times by dudes trying to impress their girls…..so lame, if you want to sit down watch the game from your couch you losers! GO HAWKS!

Atlsuperman

March 31st, 2010
3:54 pm

o yeah i for got. GO HAWKS!!!! GO FALCONS!

KEEPING IT REAL

March 31st, 2010
3:56 pm

We have HOLLYWOOD FANS.. everybody in ATL want’s to be the Sh%?! Everybody is to pretty to get up yell and make noise. ITS A GAME FOLKS STAND UP AND CHEER FOR YOUR TEAM…

magic johnson

March 31st, 2010
4:01 pm

i have been a lakers fan since childhood…we lived in LA for a few years. So even tho i have been down here since ‘96, I am & will always be a Lakers fan. I like the hawks too…they are my 2nd favorite team, but when the two teams meet, i will have on the purple & gold baybeeee!

Mike is Back

March 31st, 2010
4:04 pm

@MC, I would also like to note that it doesn’t help when you have a major network that covers the NBA, and is based in Atlanta…that spears no end to hackling and jackeling at the Hawks…it is not hard to understand why some fans still have a door mate mentally about the Hawks.

I know Ernie Johnson grew up a Braves fan…so did I…but Dang…you would never know he had any affiliation with the Hawks. At times, he speaks of the Hawks as though they are beneath the teams that are show cased on TNT. Well, at lease ESPN is starting to come around. With the increased exposure comes increased fan base.

BEAT LA…BEAT LA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Lou Hudson

March 31st, 2010
4:04 pm

DAM RIGHT, even tho I left to be a Laker!

Rick Day

March 31st, 2010
4:13 pm

No surprise here

Flashback: last fall. Falcons/Eagles

Mick Vick returns

No doubt, ATL has way too many low-class ‘fans’

JF

March 31st, 2010
4:15 pm

The Hawks coaches have them headed in the right direction. They just need to develop a desirable and appealing team personality that will attract fans and retain them.

cp

March 31st, 2010
4:19 pm

Lets hope the first unit actually comes out with some type of energy and intensity tonight. They have been starting off slow lately and I don’t want to see that happen tonight. Its going to take a good team effort to beat the Lakers so I want to see the guys sharing the ball and hitting the boards.

dram

March 31st, 2010
4:24 pm

Laker fan here…since 1977. All the Hawks have to do is win some championships and they will get the support from the city of Atlanta! Key is they have to win, not one, but a few titles! That’s why Laker fans are all over the place and they have tons of haters….they have an owner who loves to win (as well as young women) and that’s what we do win like you know what!!! If the Hawks win championships and stay competitive people will start supporting the Hawks & hating the Hawks like they do the Lakers now!

Big hawks fan

March 31st, 2010
4:28 pm

I think in this case Woody is right…I will cheer for the Hawks riogorously and boo the arrogant Lakers…it is quite irritating to see a bunch of yellow and purple jerseys in our house. These guys are the enemy and I would love nothing more than to send them home a big fat loser.

Atlive

March 31st, 2010
4:28 pm

Transplants being the cause…blah blah blah as Kiesha would say.

Most of the big rivalries in the NBA have started due to talking smack and shoving wars. As others have said, this is what gets fans so riled up. Think Boston vs Lakers, I can’t count how many times they fought in the 80s. Yankees vs Red Sox in the 00s. Duke vs UNC, all the bloody Montross and Hansbough pictures. Hawks need to get physical, the fans will follow.

I’m Hawks all the way… either way! Go Hawks.

Larry

March 31st, 2010
4:32 pm

The Hawks are a joke because of the Atlanta Spirit organization. The team may be good, but the appeal of the organization and the venue has been destroyed by those incompetent morons. As long as they are running the show I will never support the Hawks or Thrashers.

AtlSouthside

March 31st, 2010
4:34 pm

Born and raised in Atl… the city is full of transplants, thats why there is no loyalty to the team. You also have to consider the population/demographics of the CITY of Atlanta. Most people in the Metro area dont live downtown or anywhere inside of 285. Philips Arena is like 30+ minute commute from everywhere. Games start at 7. People work overnight…. Its more complex then simply loyalty… Its the culture of the city….

SN: STATEMENT GAME FOR JOE JOHNSON, JOSH SMITH & JAMAL CRAWFORD!!!!!!!!

Annette

March 31st, 2010
4:36 pm

I don’t cheer for any of them. The NBA is mostly made up of grossly overpaid thugs. If you give a thug a lot of money, all you get is a wealthy thug.

Annette

March 31st, 2010
4:40 pm

I forgot to mention that if it wasn’t for basketball, most NBA players would be digging ditches or begging on the street.

So no, I don’t cheer for the Hawks or any other team.

Westurd

March 31st, 2010
4:40 pm

HAWKS VICTORY TONIGHT……Wish I were going to this one so I can throw verbal assaults at Kobe and his Hollwood Homotrons!

O'Brien

March 31st, 2010
4:40 pm

Daniel, Sautee,

My answer is yes. But its not an easy Yes for me.

According to one of our resident blog/cap experts (I think it was Manny T), a max salary for JJ will be approximately 6 years, $119 mil (taking into account annual raises), and keep in mind that the salary cap and luxury tax level will decrease.

And Josh will be up for an extension in 3 seasons, we need to find money to resign Crawford after next season, plus Horford’s big extension, and we need to upgrade our bench (no Collins and RandMo). We do have some guys coming off the books, so there will be options for Rick Sund and the ASG to make it work financially.

However, given the option of signing JJ to a max, or losing him and be forced to sign someone for $5 mil – $8 mil, the better option is to resign JJ. Otherwise, we take a step back.

My only concern is if he gets hurt during year 4, 5 and 6 (once he gets to 32, you never know). Plus he has logged a lot of minutes. I wish we could get year 6 as a team option.

Andrew

March 31st, 2010
4:41 pm

I went to a falcons game about 2 years ago when they played the Colts on thanksgiving, I cheered for the falcons all the way. But it was still pretty cool to see Peyton Manning in person, Thats like going to see Michael Jordan it might be a once in a lifetime thing.

Diego

March 31st, 2010
4:47 pm

Haven’t read the rest of the posts, but I will.

Most casual sports fans are frontrunners–just cheer for LeBron, Kobe, the N.Y. Yankees, Red Sox, etc., etc. So pathetic. So there will be a lot of Lakers fans present. But let’s be real, there will be a lot more Hawks fans. (I know; I’ve been to oodles of these marquie (sic) Hawks games.)

And by the way, the Hawks security runs a very tight ship; you are too negative to individuals on opposing team and security may send you packing. Detroit Pistons fans generally are classless; you can’t behave like them in Atlanta. From my seats near the visitors’ bench over many years, I’ve seen a lot of fans get tossed from Phillips.

(Annette apparently just does not like black folks who make a lot of money in sports. I’ve met most of the current Hawks, and they are all pretty nice, good, down-to-earth guys.)

Truth-Serum

March 31st, 2010
4:51 pm

“Everybody loves a winner!”

It doesn’t really matter what city you are in or what region. If you win championships you will grow fans, it is a side effect of being a champion.

I’m sure of this, if owners spend the money to get the necessary talent here to win games you will pack the house consistently. Woodson has brought the hawks along way from the 13 win season.They are fun to watch and exciting. Josh, JJ and Crawford put on a very entertaining show. They are good enough to tease us in the play offs but not strong enough in the middle to get us over the hump…

The Hawks aren’t losing money. They are turning a profit. Like any good business they are keeping the lights on, paying salaries and putting something in the bank. The “wins” to “paid salary” ratio puts the hawks easily in the top ten teams. In this market, for what our salaried expenses are, you are getting a good bang for the buck.

The Hawks are a good value for the money,however, if you want to increase the earning potential you will have to invest more in salaries, target specific needs, maintain the core of what you have, including retaining JJ and Woodson’s services. Both of these are do-abl.e

You give the Hawks a quantifiable chance to win by upgrading key positions through roster acquisitions and the fan base will increase. No matter how many times the stinger and the Hawks organization attempts to deceive the fans by trying to convince us that we are going to compete for a championship with a power forward at center, the nonchalant attitude will remain. Fans aren’t stupid. Thats the reality.

Teams that compete, for championships will have fan bases every where. Atlanta is no different. We too, love a winner.

GeeMack

March 31st, 2010
5:02 pm

Daniel,

Say a few cheers for me tonight. I gotta a major project that won’t allow me to leave the office until 7:30pm.

Mr. B

March 31st, 2010
5:04 pm

There sure are a lot of kids posting on this site. Most don’t know what they are talking about. It has already been said that the Internet is becoming the playground of the kids and idiots and the smart people no longer bother to read the comments section. Living in the LA area and one of those true honest fans, I had to take a look and see what the ‘ locals ‘ had to say about their team. Well, I fond them telling lies and hating on the Lakers so I never finish.

Here are some facts.
The Lakers are the number one draw in the NBA and the world. More people come out to see the Lakers then any other team. These stats be the way comes from NBA themselfs. They have been this way for years. Kobe sells more shirts than any other player here and abroad. I can lay more stats on you but I have to go. I have a flight.

Westurd

March 31st, 2010
5:45 pm

Mr B..
Who cares about you? You don’t play for LA, probably never met Kobe, and wasted all your money fronting on jerseys so you can feel “connected” to the number one team in the universe. Lets be real, you’re not number one, the team you root for is………and how easy is it to root for number one. LAME

Westurd

March 31st, 2010
5:49 pm

Mr B,
All those kids and idiots on the internet that you are talking about have probably heard of spell check…….Have You?

Retad! LayKerz Suk! GO HAWKS

Hawk n the Ham

March 31st, 2010
5:55 pm

LOL….spell check.

Hawk n the Ham

March 31st, 2010
5:56 pm

Of course if you are a true Hawks fan, your computer should also come equipped with a ‘Heat Check’ too. :)

drmaryb

March 31st, 2010
5:58 pm

I will be at the Phillips Arena tonite & I will definitely be making some noise for the HOME team!
Boooooo KOBE & Nem’….Those cats are trying to steal a win and win that Trophy….

But, not in my house!

J-Smoove will get 5 block tonight, don’t even bring that junk in here!

Go Hawks! “Sick – Em’” like a mike vick dog!

Freshfromatl

March 31st, 2010
6:03 pm

Hawks,

This is your chance to convince me to purchase season/ playoff tickets. Don’t blow it!!!!!!!!

Hawk n the Ham

March 31st, 2010
6:04 pm

I’m going to go ahead and call it now. Durant and the Thunder take the Celtics down tonight. Mark my words……

Sautee

March 31st, 2010
6:19 pm

Truth-serum,

Although I disagree with PART of your post (you can probably guess which part), that was the most cogent, well thought out post I’ve seen from you.

Nice writing.

Now can you tell us exactly what it is about Horford that makes you react so vehemently against him?

I mean, I understand that he doesn’t block enough shots for you, but that doesn’t seem to be the kind of thing that would make you totally disparage the PERSON the way you do. Can you clue us in?

JeJe

March 31st, 2010
6:23 pm

FIRE MIKE KNAPP

Sautee

March 31st, 2010
6:47 pm

OK, we’ve lost 2 of the last 4.

I want to see some of that Hawks resiliency tonight.

cdog

March 31st, 2010
6:53 pm

LET THEM PRAUSE TYHE LAKERS ALL THY WANT TO, AS LONG AS THE ATLANTA HAWKS WIN THE GAME.

Taylor

March 31st, 2010
6:56 pm

Looking forward to the game tonight. I can’t stand all the front runners, pathetic. Probably could not point out LA on a map

Wabe

March 31st, 2010
7:04 pm

northcyde

March 31st, 2010
7:05 pm

The Hawks have been consistent all year, not having lost more than 5 games in a month. In March, we’re currently 10 – 5.

It’s funny a difference 2 weeks makes. 2 weeks ago, we had fans looking toward these stretch of games as the point in which the Hawks will fail to deliver. The Spurs, Magic, Lakers, and Cavs games were supposed to prove that the Hawks “don’t belong”

LOL . . . so far, we’re 2 – 0 with 2 to go.

It’s GAMETIME . . . is the arena mostly full right now? I bet it is. So much for the start time issue, if it is.

Taylor

March 31st, 2010
7:10 pm

Haven’t won 9 straight @ home since the omni!

Najeh Davenpoop

March 31st, 2010
7:10 pm

No Andrew Bynum means the Hawks have a chance to exploit the Lakers’ middle tonight. Odom and Gasol are extremely talented but neither one is a defensive stopper. If the Hawks play inside out they can take some pressure off Joe, who will have to deal with Ron Artest or Kobe Bryant defending him all night.

I can’t watch this game (if it were up to me I would be at Philips right now) so I’m counting on y’all to drop some knowledge through the game as usual so I can come back and see how it all went down.

Taylor

March 31st, 2010
7:13 pm

Smoove tried to call a time out 10 seconds before he called it

Taylor

March 31st, 2010
7:14 pm

for once our PG matchup looks even

Taylor

March 31st, 2010
7:14 pm

This is why Smoove needs to give the ball up….

Taylor

March 31st, 2010
7:18 pm

where is everyone tonight?

Sautee

March 31st, 2010
7:21 pm

LOL, Horford rode Gasol right out of the paint.

But he’s too small and frail. And he got called for a foul.

Sautee

March 31st, 2010
7:22 pm

Najeh, we look good on offense so far. Lots of ball movement and Bibby is hitting.

Taylor

March 31st, 2010
7:25 pm

Listen to all the Kobe nut huggers LOL

Sautee

March 31st, 2010
7:27 pm

Najeh,

Horford pulls the chair out from Gasol, doesn’t even TOUCH him, and they call a foul, his second.

Hawk n the Ham

March 31st, 2010
7:29 pm

Expect the Lakers to get the superstar calls all night from the refs. It’s become just too natural for those thieves with whistles.

Sautee

March 31st, 2010
7:29 pm

Josh with 4 assists already.

Taylor

March 31st, 2010
7:32 pm

Foul on the Lakers :o

Hawk n the Ham

March 31st, 2010
7:34 pm

Steve Holman said, “..well there’s Kobe’s foul for the night”.

LOL :lol:

Wabe

March 31st, 2010
7:35 pm

You gotta like what you’re seeing out of the 2nd unit guys here in the 1st quarter.

Hawk n the Ham

March 31st, 2010
7:35 pm

Wabe

March 31st, 2010
7:38 pm

I don’t get why we can’t finish games the way we start them. We played a pretty good 1st quarter there. Ball movement was pretty good. We made shots, and we got a number of guys involved. Bench guys came in and sustained the effort.

Wabe

March 31st, 2010
7:39 pm

Woody can’t abandon the bench guys in the 2nd half. Mo Evans is playing pretty well, and Zaza has provided good energy.

Sautee

March 31st, 2010
8:03 pm

Good job by the bench.

Taylor

March 31st, 2010
8:11 pm

Solid first half. Gotta keep it going though

Sautee

March 31st, 2010
8:13 pm

Nice first half. Woody shouldn’t forget the bench in the 2nd.

Horford will have the freshest legs on the court in the 3rd quarter. Let him RUN!

One GREAT sequence in the 2nd quarter where JJ played in Kobe’s chest. But, alas, we switch, so JJ doesn’t STAY on Kobe.

JASon

March 31st, 2010
8:28 pm

Transplants make up a much larger percentage of the population here than in cities like LA or DC. It is a fact. Should that be an excuse for people like me not to go to games? Heck no. I am to blame as much as everyone else. But right now I haven’t been doing much with the economy.

Sautee

March 31st, 2010
8:44 pm

Joe is playing tough d on Kobe.

Sautee

March 31st, 2010
8:53 pm

GREAT bench tonight. Mo and Zaza are filling it.

Sautee

March 31st, 2010
9:03 pm

LOL Marvin doesn’t know his own strength.

Sautee

March 31st, 2010
9:12 pm

Is this thing on? testing, testing.

Rich

March 31st, 2010
9:27 pm

Who cares? All the players are criminals and so are the fans.

Taylor

March 31st, 2010
9:54 pm

Rich..smh, you are pitiful. I didn’t know I was a criminal.

Taylor

March 31st, 2010
9:56 pm

Josh Smith just said he told the Lakers fans behind the Hawks bench to go home! HAHAHAHAHAHA

Truth-Serum

March 31st, 2010
10:43 pm

“Horford will have the freshest legs on the court in the 3rd quarter. Let him RUN!”

Let him run to the locker run and get Zaza the second string center a Gatorade for showing him how to play some freaking defense!

irishmafia116

March 31st, 2010
10:53 pm

The Hawks are totally irrelevan in the Atlanta sports community

Truth-Serum

March 31st, 2010
11:09 pm

Sautee
“Now can you tell us exactly what it is about Horford that makes you react so vehemently against him?”

I normally try to do a “Dezz Nuttz” reply when I get asked willfully ignorant questions. This question to borders uselessness but I guess its the “most cogent question youve ever asked when you consider your level of understanding the game.

I have shown you repeatedly by stats, view and professional analysis how teams abuse us in the paint because of Horford s lack of defensive intensity. We won tonight because horford was too weak in the post and got in foul trouble so Zaza, who is a much better defender than Al came in and got physical in the paint. Guys just kill us in the paint and Horford is always accommodating and helpful to opponents wish to score. Nothing has change, You may enjoy his nuttz in your role as his personal nut hugger, but I like results. A centers # 1 job is to protect the rim from invasion. Yes you are right, being number 29th among centers out of thirty teams in the block shot category is repulsive. He was 29th at one point last week but has currently move back to 18th where he was 2 weeks ago. Play some defense under the basket. Im dont like all the pictures with every body else doing the defensive work while horford is waiting for a free rebound while someone else does the work.

Bottom line is that inspite of the way you paint me as a horford hater, im not. I think the man is a very good power forward, just not as good as josh. I think hes mediocre as a center. My view is that you have to defend the rack and the paint if you are going to go deep in the playoffs. I doubt that we can do that with Horford in the middle.

Tonight perfectly illustrated that as has many other nights.