Archive for October, 2010

Atlanta Hawks: The continuing education of Jordan Crawford

L.D. says JC2 learning it's 'a little different on this level.'  (Hyosub Shin/hshin@ajc.com)

L.D. says JC2 learning it’s ‘a little different on this level.’ (Hyosub Shin/hshin@ajc.com)

The education of Jordan Crawford started at the Las Vegas Summer League and continued at “Gurg’s” camp in the same city.

Those were just remedial classes, though.

The real coursework started when Hawks camp opened last week and Crawford’s competition included an All-Star and Sixth Man Award winner instead of rookies and fringe free agents.

“It’s through the roof,” Crawford said. “One day you are checking Jamal. The next day you are checking Joe. The next day you are checking Jeff.

In addition to the difficulty of those assignments, Crawford is adjusting to a heavy course load. He admits that the two-a-day practices, long sessions and running of L.D.’s camp were “real demanding” physically.

“The conditioning is the hardest part,” he said.

Considering all those factors, it’s no surprise that camp observers say Crawford’s performance has tailed off a bit after a quick start, …

Continue reading Atlanta Hawks: The continuing education of Jordan Crawford »

Atlanta Hawks: Al Horford welcomes long stay in Atlanta as extension negotiations begin

Hawks, Horford begin negotiations on contract extension.

Hawks, Horford begin negotiations on contract extension.

Over the next few weeks the Hawks and Al Horford’s agent, Arn Tellem, will work on the terms of a contract extension beyond 2010-11 for Atlanta’s All-Star center.

That’s the money side of the equation, and Horford said negotiations are in the early stages. After considering the other factors that play into his decision, Horford said he would like to stay in Atlanta for the long term.

“How do you see yourself with the team?” Horford said about his thought process. “Do you think the team is going the right way? Obviously, you have to factor in do you like the city you are in, [do you] get along with the guys [teammates]?

“All those things favor me because I feel like we are in a good position. We’ve been playing together. This is my fourth year with the team, and I love the city of Atlanta. So I am just waiting to see what happens with this whole thing.”

Horford is set to make $5.4 million in 2010-11, the final year of …

Continue reading Atlanta Hawks: Al Horford welcomes long stay in Atlanta as extension negotiations begin »

Atlanta Hawks: Jamal Crawford prepared to ‘go elsewhere’ without extension

Jamal Crawford isn’t happy about his contract situation. It’s been obvious to those around him at Hawks camp that his demeanor isn’t the same. He’s being a professional but the enthusiasm is lacking.

So far, Crawford has stopped short of publicly expressing his displeasure with the Hawks for not offering a contract extension. In that way he’s taking a different tact than Kenyon Martin in Denver and Aaron Brooks in Houston.

But Crawford’s stance might be shifting a bit. At media day Monday he was careful to avoid talking about the possibility of leaving the Hawks. Now, with GM Rick Sund still not offering an extension and also resisting trade inquiries, Crawford sounds more urgent about the issue.

“You think something is solid and a family you just want that to be what it is,” Crawford said today “I would love to be here long term, no doubts about it. I would love to lock that up before I become a free agent. I want to make it work here. But if that is not the plan I guess I …

Continue reading Atlanta Hawks: Jamal Crawford prepared to ‘go elsewhere’ without extension »

Atlanta Hawks: Etan Thomas and Josh Powell add ‘physicality’

If Etan doesn't get much chance to mix it up with the likes of Dwight he'll prepare teammates for it. (AP Photo)

If Etan doesn’t get much chance to mix it up with the likes of Dwight he’ll prepare teammates for it. (AP Photo)

Even considering L.D.’s plan to use a deeper rotation, it’s possible Etan Thomas and Josh Powell won’t get regular minutes during the season. As it stands now Thomas is no higher than the No. 3 center behind Al and Zaza , and with Al expected to play minutes at power forward Powell might be fifth or six in the bigs pecking order.

Yet even if Atlanta’s two new big men don’t get much game time the word at Hawks training camp is they are already paying dividends with their physical play during practices. One observer said he wouldn’t be surprised if a fight breaks out soon because of the way Thomas and Powell mix it up.

Not that such a development would be unwelcome for the Hawks as they try to shed their finesse rep.

“All of Etan’s career he’s brought toughness,” Smoove said. “Josh has come in and he’s a physical player. We definitely need that. He played on a …

Continue reading Atlanta Hawks: Etan Thomas and Josh Powell add ‘physicality’ »