L.D. is using the same starting lineup tonight. If the Hawks continue to open games with no energy then he said there could be changes.
“If we keep getting off to these slow starts, I may have to start thinking about doing something with the lineup,” he said. “I just can’t continue to allow us to constantly get off to slow starts. I may have to do something to shake it up. We’ll see what happens tonight.
“But I can’t sit here and just constantly allow us to keep getting off to those type starts because we are burying ourselves early and we are having to exert so much energy fighting back. That may be something we have to start thinking about.”
The Hawks had another big meeting Wednesday morning. To their credit, they are tired of all the talking, too.
“I’m a vet,” Mo said. “Talking doesn’t mean much to me. We’ll see how we respond tonight and over these next few games. We should have enough pride in what we’ve done the last two or three years where we shouldn’t need any meetings, in my opinion.”
One main focus of the meeting was all the blown assignments defensively. I’m told that some guys are getting upset when a teammate screws up and puts them in a bad position, but the Hawks have resolved to not stop playing hard when it happens.
“We all have to be on the same page defensively,” Al said. “We are going to have breakdowns but we have to stay with it and fight through some of that stuff.”
Al Thornton is out for the Wizards, John Wall is back, so Flip Saunders is going with a three-guard lineup featuring Wall, Arenas, and Hinrich.
The Wizards have lost 10 straight to the Hawks, including the home opener. But if you recall that one wasn’t easy for Atlanta though Washington was without Arenas.
“We have to be a little different with him on pick-and-rolls and we really have to get to him in transition,” L.D. said. “The last time we played this team they really ran the ball on us, especially Wall. Now you have him pushing it and Gilbert spotting up. So we have to stop the ball and also know where Gilbert is on the perimeter.”