Atlanta Hawks: Media day musings

Jamal was happy to see L.D. at least. (Curtis Compton / ccompton@ajc.com)

Jamal was happy to see L.D. at least. (Curtis Compton / ccompton@ajc.com)

A few notes from my rounds today during the official unveiling of your 2010-11 Atlanta Hawks . . .

Jamal

Jamal was there, though I wouldn’t say he was exactly thrilled. Jamal said he “loves it” in Atlanta and wants to stay for the long term. He didn’t really address the contract situation or the trade demand directly but it didn’t take much reading between the lines to figure out what he’s feeling.

Does he think he will be in Atlanta for the near future?

“I honestly don’t know. I would love to work something out and be here long term. Last year I would have thought this was home and I’m part of the team’s future. But if it doesn’t work out that way I guess we will just have to cross that bridge when we get there.”

Does he want a trade if he doesn’t get the extension?

” I don’t want to talk about that. I will leave that up to Rick [Sund] and my agent to talk about.”

Does he feel disrespected by the lack of an extension?

“I wouldn’t say that. It’s not to that point yet. I know these things take time. I’ll just be patient and go with the flow.”

Does he have a deadline by which he wants an offer?

“Not an exact timeline.”

Does he want an offer before the start of the season?

“That would be very nice.”

How much does the uncertainty with the expiring CBA play into his situation?

“A lot of it has to do with it. With the CBA, there is no telling what [happens].”

J.J.

This was the first time he’s faced the full media contingent since the end of last season. Similar to my interview with him after he signed his contract, J.J. didn’t seem concerned about any fallout from his comments about fans during the Orlando series.

Is he worried about how fans will perceive him?

“Not at all.”

Does he think fans will “forgive and forget?”

“I hope so. But all I’m going to do is come out and play hard and help us win.”

My feeling is that, no matter how many times or ways he’s asked about this issue, an apology or expression of regret isn’t coming from J.J.

Joe said he still believes the Hawks are among the best teams in the East. He said last season was a “great season, and I’m looking forward to an even better season.”

J.J. said he’s not concerned about the Heat. Asked what he thinks about the team they’ve assembled, J.J. pointedly said: “I haven’t seen them play yet.” It’s a good point.

He said he’s excited about L.D.’s new offense because “it will help us all out.” I asked him if he has any reluctance to alter his game after so many years of personal success with that style: “I’m going to be able to adapt to whatever L.D. has for us.”

Smoove

Josh worked this summer with NBA trainer Idan Ravin.

“He pushed me. We worked on various things: ballhandling, the midrange jump shot. And whenever I got an opportunity to play 5-on-5 I worked on making better decisions on the floor. I know it’s just pickup but when you get in that situation and really work on things you are not so strong at.”

Mo Evans

He’s still not ready to play after surgery to clean out cartilage in his right knee. Mo said it would be about another two weeks before he can do court work. Right now his focus is on building strength.

Mo said training camp is about preparation but, as a vet, he’s not too worried about missing time.

“I don’t think they are trying to see what they’ve got in Mo Evans,” he joked.

Zaza

He played 14 games in international competition for his native Georgia and is proud that his country qualified for the European Championships for the first time in any team sport. Zaza, the national team’s captain, said he always comes back feeling energized and confident from being The Man.

Zaza said he also comes to camp with a better attitude after he butted heads with Woody over playing the last couple years.

“I’m getting my confidence back,” he said. “It wasn’t a great year for me last year. After talking to L.D., I’ve cleared out my mind.”

Jason Collins

He is indeed noticeably slimmer–Zaza joked that Collins was motivated by the new slim-fitting unis. Twin said his regiment included a modified diet, cardio and weights.

Collins said he’s looking forward to L.D. deploying a deeper “bigs” rotation.

“That sounds great to me,” he said. “It also will allow Horford to play some power forward. Josh won’t have so many minutes and can be fresh for the playoffs.”

L.D.

Conditioning is going to be a major focus for camp. L.D. is timing players in the mile today.

“If they don’t make their time, they’ve got a lot of extra conditioning,” he said.

(An aside: I told L.D. I ran a mile in 7:29 the other day and he wasn’t impressed. “You’ve got to be in the sixes.” Dang.)

Drew said he’s confident he can install all of his offensive system and defensive coverages by the time the season starts.

Drew said he hired Nick Van Exel as a player development coach in large part to work with Teague:

““The intriguing thing with him is he is not far removed from the game. He had a great career. As everyone remembers, he played with an edge [and] played with a kind of chip on his shoulder. I told him that’s his job with Jeff Teague is to get him to play more with an edge every time he steps out on the floor. I know from when I seen him working with Jeff and staying in Jeff’s ear, I can see it rubbing off a little bit.”

MC

139 comments Add your comment

tom

September 27th, 2010
7:33 pm

it’s finally here!

bigdave

September 27th, 2010
7:38 pm

last thing we need on the court is a trigger happy cancer who cant defend.. if he wants to play Jekyll and Hyde ship him out. asap.

bigdave

September 27th, 2010
7:38 pm

josh

September 27th, 2010
7:43 pm

im anxious to see how these few changes will help the team

tb

September 27th, 2010
7:47 pm

What have Marvin Williams done to improve from Last year.

Dajackyl

September 27th, 2010
7:54 pm

Sixth! Finally We can Talk about some meaningful Basketball the sweet sweet sweet Game!

Hawksfan

September 27th, 2010
8:09 pm

Jamal went over board on the tats

Show me state

September 27th, 2010
8:21 pm

Can’t wait for the season to start…i plan on being in memphis for the season opener…
MC, are u going to be in memphis for the season opener?

Section 303

September 27th, 2010
8:26 pm

Nice stuff, Michael.

I read the book The Art of the Beautiful Game, by Chris Ballard. He has an entire chapter in there about Idan Ravin. Ballard wrote about Ravin calling out LeBron James the first time James came to workout. Would love to know what he said to Josh Smith.

Joe is still a douchebag I see…good to know that didn’t change over the summer.

northcyde

September 27th, 2010
8:33 pm

Let’s see if this entry by MC will peak interest. There’s enough here for everybody to latch on to.

truthspitter

September 27th, 2010
8:43 pm

Nothing really excites me about this team. If Nick Van Exel was still playing I would be really excited. Teague will never be as good as Nick the Quick was in his prime.

dstdeelite

September 27th, 2010
8:48 pm

Did I miss something? Who the hell is Evan Brock?

dstdeelite

September 27th, 2010
8:49 pm

At this point, why would JJ apologize? He’s rich, biotch!!!

ILL-Logical

September 27th, 2010
8:49 pm

Grandad

September 27th, 2010
8:50 pm

Snidely Whiplash – aka [northcyde]

I’m interested in basketball year ’round,
day and night,
weekends & holidays!

Section 303

September 27th, 2010
8:50 pm

I got my season tickets today, too, by the way! Always exciting when the season ticket box arrives at my work place!

Grandad

September 27th, 2010
8:55 pm

As for Jamal;
I think he is sincere & really wants to be here.
My hope is for something to work out.

Michael Cunningham

September 27th, 2010
8:55 pm

@ Show me state: “MC, are u going to be in memphis for the season opener?”

yes

northcyde

September 27th, 2010
8:56 pm

LOL @ 303 . . still sore I see. You’ll get your chance to boo JJ on opening night, when only 14,000 will show up ( lol . . it better be more than that ).

If JJ is a douchebag, all of those fans who started boo in the 1st quarter of game 3, when the game wasn’t even out of reach yet, are douchebags too. Or at the very least, they’re the water in the douchebag.

Michael Cunningham

September 27th, 2010
8:57 pm

@ josh: “im anxious to see how these few changes will help the team”

“curious” is the word i used while shooting the stuff with people today. it’s going to be interesting.

dstdeelite

September 27th, 2010
9:03 pm

Why do people hate on JC for wanting to get paid? Like it or not, he’s earned a pay increase. How much? I can’t answer that, but I’m not mad at the man for asking.

lewis

September 27th, 2010
9:09 pm

jamal hasn’t earned a pay increase. He’s worth like 6-7m a year tops

shaqtus thorns

September 27th, 2010
9:14 pm

I dont know about JC1 getting a raise, he’s already well paid. I’d say he deserves an extension of 2 years with a team option third. It probably won’t happen though, as he’s more valuable at the trade deadline with his expiring deal….

dap01

September 27th, 2010
9:19 pm

Jamal is playing for $10,000,000 this year. He is not underpaid. He does not deserve one dime more than the contract that he signed. I say trade him to the Clippers and let him feel respected as he gets his 21 points and 31 wins.

When you sign a contract you and the club are only obligated for the years of the contract. There is no disrespecting if you are extended.

Sickening.

bigdave

September 27th, 2010
9:25 pm

“Why do people hate on JC for wanting to get paid?”

oh trust, im all for these guys getting their due check but, pay me or trade me..? to a team (potentially less talented) that probably isnt gonna pay you til the summer anyway.. timing was a bit odd; seems a bit tacky, i just dont see his leverage.. especially given the commitments made this summer and those needed to be made next or sooner..

UGA

September 27th, 2010
9:29 pm

MC: Who will play the 3 during the abscence of Mo? SY?

northcyde

September 27th, 2010
9:38 pm

Jamal knows that his stock is highest right now. If he can secure 3 or 4 more years before the new CBA comes out, it’ll benefit him. But we must take care of Al first. And Jamal knows this.

If we hold onto Jamal, the worst case scenario is that last year ( whcih was a career best season ) was a fluke, and he reverts back to his 40% FG career shooting normal self. If that happens, his stock will go down, and we’ll get less for him.

LOL @ Grandad . . . Oh no sir . . you were Snidley in that last blog. You and your henchmen tried to kidnap MC, and tie him to a railroad track so that a train could run over him. Fortunately, MC escaped your clutches, with the assistance of some of our Dudley Blog-Right posters on here. They weren’t about to let that train run over MC.

ant banks

September 27th, 2010
9:43 pm

mc,

did you get a chance to talk to jordan crawford? would love to know what the “new rook” thinks.

Swatguy

September 27th, 2010
9:44 pm

You are staggering the info MC. WHen is Sund’s contract up? Are the Assistant GM’s still interviewing? Waiting on Marvin,Al, Etan, Pape and Bibs day.

Section 303

September 27th, 2010
9:44 pm

northcyde, I’m not going to boo him. He is not worth the energy. Plus, I have a feeling there will be plenty from the other 13,999 announced fans to boo him.

And, the Hawks deserved the booing they got in game 3. Josh just standing and watching Lewis get a loose ball, Bibby just halfway stretching to tip a pass…..oh, skip it.

Section 303

September 27th, 2010
9:47 pm

Not sure where I stand on the Jamal thing. I understand his situation. The CBA will change. He wants security. On the other hand, he is making $10,000,000. If he plays the “I’m disrespected” card, he can go F himself.

I’m hoping he does not do that, though. He seems like a good dude, even if he is a former University of Michigan player.

Swatguy

September 27th, 2010
9:49 pm

‘Cyde you were hating on Jamal last year this time and it was for not. Jamal is a baller even if you will not admit you were wrong about him. He has earned an extention, he was the difference last season as others disappointed.

Big Ray

September 27th, 2010
9:56 pm

I don’t give a rat’s hindquarters about Joe’s comments to the fans. So what? He doesn’t know us, and we don’t know him. Joe’s got 124 million reasons to not give a rip about the guys in the stands. Fact is, you can rip the fans all you want. Joe can say what he wants. Does the team need fan support? Sure. It wouldn’t kill Joe to say that. No apology needed, but tell the fans you need their support. What would it hurt? Nobody says you have to, but it might actually encourage fan support.

In the meantime, what Joe says (or rather, doesn’t say) won’t have squat to do with how much support I give the team. And the real douchebag part of him was how he played through the majority of the playoffs, most specifically the 2nd round. Spin that how ya want, compare it to Jamal Crawford for the purpose of distracting and pointing the finger elsewhere. Whatever. The team failed, as did the $124 million dollar team captain. I don’t want to see that again, is what I know.

Funny how the Woodson effect still resonates. Zaza coming to camp with a much better attitude without Woody around, and having talked with Larry Drew. Makes me think two things:

1) As if you needed more proof that there were serious issues with Woodson and his style, and that the fans weren’t making this ish up (as some loved to claim), well there you go. I always thought Zaza had one of the better attitudes and work ethics on the team.

2) Zaza joins a contingent of guys who will no longer be able to blame Woodson for failure. If Zaza doesn’t get the job done, or doesn’t get the minutes, people will be a lot slower this time to throw this on the coach. Zaza must produce. Or show himself to be a hypocrite. Ya hear that, Mr. Mo Evans?

Big Ray

September 27th, 2010
9:59 pm

Let’s see if this entry by MC will peak interest. There’s enough here for everybody to latch on to.

Heh, heh, heh. Methinks you had no intentions of latching onto anything MC had to say. I think you waited for a chance to waylay a blogger….

;)

SteveW

September 27th, 2010
10:00 pm

I like Jamal, and he’s my favorite backcourt player. That being said, the realities of the NBA are such, I don’t see how Jamal makes a 3 year 12mil. deal after this one expires with the Hawks. We just don’t have the salary space, especially with the new CBA evidentley making cap space even more scarce. We need to sign Al 1st, and if he gets between 11-13 m which most expect, we have 63-65 mil. committed before Jamal – that from JJ, Smoove, Al, ZaZa, Marvin, Bibby, Teague, and JC2 – 8 players. We have to sign 5 more players minimum. That’s why I see Sy (2nd rd. money) an extra 2nd pick from the Suns (2nd round money for that pick) as moves that were made – we have to fill out our roster next season on the cheap.

It’s not that I don’t like Jamal, I do, but are budget is toast for next season. If ASG was Mark Cuban or Arthur Blank, I would say he would be re-signed. But with our current financial restraints, I don’t see how. Hope he plays like crazy for us this year, and the Nets Russian billionare severely overpays for him next summer.

MsDee

September 27th, 2010
10:00 pm

MC,

I’m curious too how was JC2 and Pape Sy? Anything interesting to write about on those guys today?

Swatguy

September 27th, 2010
10:10 pm

ASG needs to pony up and move into the luxery suite(Cap Wise) like the other Elite teams. Sign Jamal now and match anyone that offers a contract to Al. McDavid might be willing to pay for the suite.

Big Ray

September 27th, 2010
10:10 pm

Not likely. They don’t start doing anything physical until tomorrow.

SteveW

September 27th, 2010
10:12 pm

This year we don’t have a single guy making mid/late 2nd round or DLeague FA type money (under $500,000.00 per). Everybody is over a mill, even though for vet min. guys the Hawks get a rebate from the League back for any amount over $894,000.00. Next season, don’t be surprised to see Sy, and maybe a couple of other 2nd pick or FA types make the squad (like Siler or Aminu). It saves on cash.

Our total salary commitment for next season is $51,606,550.00 – This is before signing Al Horford, and assuming we pick up Teague’s option for $1,579,920.

SteveW

September 27th, 2010
10:13 pm

And by this year, I’m assuming Sy goes to DLeague, if not, he would be that 2nd round money player. Brilliant move to get him over here. If Mo’s knee doesn’t heal, we have a cheap replacement.

SteveW

September 27th, 2010
10:21 pm

ATL is still 1.423m under luxury tax for this year – we got enough for one more player (1 more roster spot open).

That may be one reason why we have those 3 camp invites here – seeing if any of them could make the squad on the cheap next year.

And we can complain all we want, but on a micro level, Sund and staff have done a masterful job constructing this team and keeping it under tax. The more I have studied the contracts, length’s of contracts, when they expire, why they traded, drafted, obtained when and what they did, there is alot more going on than meets the eye sometimes.

Jamal and Mo’ come off the books in time to sign Al.
Bibby and ZaZa come off the books in time to re-sign Smoove

SteveW

September 27th, 2010
10:25 pm

And Teague (added to the end of the last post). We draft JC2 A) Not knowing for sure we re-sign JJ B) As a replacement for Jamal, and give him a year in the system.

Sy great replacement potential for Mo’ on the cheap. Gladyr is also in the mix. PF’s being auditioned to back up Smoove on the cheap at this camp. A lot of good stuff is happening – these guys know what they’re doing, even if we as fans don’t think so sometimes.

MsDee

September 27th, 2010
10:31 pm

Oh and by-da-way, did u guys see J Collins?? It would be truly disrespect to call him Cheeseburger now!! Dude havent seen a cheeseburger all off-season.

@Big Ray, “Funny how the Woodson effect still resonates. Zaza coming to camp with a much better attitude without Woody around, and having talked with Larry Drew. Makes me think two things:”
Let me add 1 more thing to your list, this one toward JCollins..3) JCollins was told by LD what he expects for him and was also told he would have a much bigger role on the team than what Woodson had for him. JCollins knew what he needed to do and went out and made it happen by losing the necessary weight needed inorder to run LD’s new offense.

I’m excited about the new team because of what LD plans are for this team!!

Oh and I’m kool with Joe ‘no punk’ apology to the fans cause he owns none to us. He nevered disrespected the fans, he called out his-self and his teammates that what was more important was not the fans in the crowd but them on the court! And he was correct!! Now if he would have come crying to the fans for forgiveness, fans would still find a way to say, oh he’s a punk for crying to the fans.. Mann he cant win for losing.

SteveW

September 27th, 2010
10:35 pm

I should add – Gladyr is in the mix as a 5th guard/shooter off the bench for next season.

Big Ray

September 27th, 2010
10:46 pm

Ms Dee ,

I think I agree with your whole post.

N.D.T.K.A.

September 27th, 2010
10:47 pm

Ahh! The fresh smell of autumn leaves, cooler fall weather, and Media Day and training camp for the Hawks!! Thanks for the updates MC!!

I also would like to hear some comments from Jordan Crawford and Pape Sy.

J.J. is not going to apologize because he has put last season behind him and is moving forward with this season – sounds like a positive attitude to me.

Glad to hear about Smoove working with an NBA trainer and especially with his decision making – sounds good.

Jamal Crawford I think I am somewhat torn about his situation. On the one hand he seems to be a pretty good guy and knows what to say (politically correct)and is a heck of a sixth man. On the other hand, as has already been stated we can’t afford to pay him the kind of money he is looking for in any type of long term deal, unless Hawks get rid of someone which is unlikely.
My guess is that Jamal will be gone around the trade deadline this year, hope we get something good in return for him. Maybe his next team will give him that contract he’s looking for.

I am also curios to see how Bibby and Jason Collins perform this season in L. Drew’s system? It requires alot of conditioning: Bibby seems to have a set of bad wheels and Collins just seems lazy although he has lost some weight.

I thinks Nick the Quick will be good for Teague. Nick was a fearless player and if some of that rubs off on Teague Hswks might be in good shape this season.

Oh well, just some random thoughts.

niremetal

September 27th, 2010
10:52 pm

Dear Jamal,

You know that expiring CBA? I’ll let you in on a little secret. The NBA teams know about it too. Yeah, I hate to be the one to break it to you, but you aren’t the only one who sees it coming. That means they also know that any amount they pay you now is more than you could ever pray to get on the open market next year. In other words, holding out or pouting will not accomplish anything, because there is not one single damned team in the NBA who would be dumb enough to give you a big-money extension right before the CBA expires.

Oh, and if your agents are telling you otherwise – fire them.

Sincerely,
niremetal

drmaryb (*_*)

September 27th, 2010
11:06 pm

Fire it Up!

Ms. Dee,

You throwing seven kinds of smoke! I don’t know who supplied
You? But, I got 5ive on it!

Your entire post was excellent, cogent, filled with passion and
heart. You giving me goose bumps and I nominate you for:

MVP (most valuable poster)

Swatguy

September 27th, 2010
11:26 pm

@niremetal
You and some are missing the important thing. We do not need to lose Jamal. You see, Jamal is not the type of player to shrink as we have seen in Marvin, Joe, Mo and Teague. Jamal is not the enemy, he is weapon needed not turned away. Sign him for a reasonable contract and go forward. run the disappointments away.

Hmmm

September 27th, 2010
11:30 pm

“He’s still not ready to play after surgery to clean out cartilage in his right knee. ”

Oh? When did this happen? It’s offical, Pape Sy Just took Mo’s backup SF minutes. smh good riddance. Now all we need is for Bibby to fake another thumb or heel injury so JC2 can take his rightful place in the rotation.