Sixers at Atlanta Hawks: No Horford, no gimme vs. ‘dangerous team’

Before the Hawks played the Knicks a couple weekends back, L.D. put 7-2 out there as the record to shoot for before the All-Star break. So I told him the Hawks had to win three of their next four to get it.

“We want 8-1,” he said, smiling.

This game might have looked like a gimme at one point but not anymore. For one thing, Al is sitting out another game with the bruised back. Zaza is starting in his place.

L.D. said Al ended up deciding his back was better off not taking a pounding. Plus, the Hawks don’t play again until Saturday.

“I actually gave it some thought this morning even before he made his decision,” L.D. said. “Certainly I want him out there but if there is any kind of inkling about him having any kind of discomfort or concern about [if] his back can take the pounding it just makes more sense to keep him out. He gets another four days for treatment and rest.”

So playing without their All-Star center complicates things for the Hawks. Also, don’t forget the Hawks were down 18 to Philly before rallying for a W on Dec. 3.

“I still don’t know how we won that game,” Jamal said.

In the first meeting, Philly jumped out to an 11-2 lead and the Hawks had to hold off a late rally. Al had 20 and 12 in that one.

“It seems like we are always behind when we play them,” J.J. said. “We have to come out with the mindset to get off to a good start, especially against their bigs.”

The Sixers lost to New York Sunday after bearing the Knicks on Friday. They are 6-4 in their last 10 with Ws against Denver and Utah.

“They are a very, very dangerous team because they never feel or play like they are out of the game even if they are down,” L.D. said. “They have had some very quality wins. They play hard; they keep coming. They play with a blue-collar mentality of outworking you and grinding it out. . . . You can’t look at their record, where they stand in the standings. You have got to look at who that team is, and the kind of personality they have.”

The other side

Sixers coach Doug Collins on the Hawks without Al: “He’s an All-Star center. When you come in with Pachulia off the bench he gives you such energy and toughness. I have known they have been starting Jason, so I don’t know if they will start him or come in with Paculia. It changes it a little bit; they play big a lot. They will play Hoford as a power forward, they can go with Pachulia, they can go with Josh Smith as a three. They have a lot of flexibility. With [Horford] not out there they will definitely miss him but they have a lot of big guys.”

Collins on J.J. vs. Jodie Meeks: “I don’t know that Jodie can play him. We might have to have a little cross-matching. This might be a game where I have to sub early, just because their wings are so big. This ream reminds me of Charlotte with how big the wings are and they post them up. [The Hawks] are a better shooting team, and with their 3-point shooters it makes it harder to guard the post.”

Michael Cunningham, Hawks beat

331 comments Add your comment

hawks_4_life

February 8th, 2011
7:03 pm

lewis

February 8th, 2011
7:09 pm

glad al’s not playing

J.J.M

February 8th, 2011
7:10 pm

Josh Smith to replace Al Horford in the all star

Najeh Davenpoop

February 8th, 2011
7:11 pm

At least it sounds like they are taking the Sixers seriously. They should. That team is playing a lot better. Hopefully their words translate into actions, and hopefully Zaza will defy the odds and play another decent game.

Najeh Davenpoop

February 8th, 2011
7:12 pm

The Sixers are already working hard and denying the Hawks their passing lanes and post position.

And Bibby already bricks a 3.

J.J.M

February 8th, 2011
7:13 pm

bibby still starting?

J.J.M

February 8th, 2011
7:14 pm

lmaoooo@zaza just horrible

Najeh Davenpoop

February 8th, 2011
7:14 pm

6′11″ Zaza gets his shot blocked by 6′3″ Jrue Holiday.

lewis

February 8th, 2011
7:14 pm

Wow, bibby looks REALLLY BAD tonight

hawks_4_life

February 8th, 2011
7:14 pm

how do you get blocked by a pg

hawks_4_life

February 8th, 2011
7:15 pm

This game doesnt bode well for us at alal

lewis

February 8th, 2011
7:15 pm

hes like strugging to run, he honestly looks like me out there and i’m 5′11 230

Najeh Davenpoop

February 8th, 2011
7:16 pm

I can understand why the Hawks went with Zaza over Collins in this one, though. Hawes is a good outside shooter, and Collins probably wouldn’t feel comfortable stepping out on him.

Down the stretch, I’d rather see the Hawks go small with Marvin and Smoove at PF and C.

One foul on Smoove already. The Sixers are working hard.

lewis

February 8th, 2011
7:16 pm

we’re garbage without Josh defensively, but we’re garbage without Al offensively

lewis

February 8th, 2011
7:17 pm

Jamal/JJ/Damien/Marvin/Josh – make it happen right now LD or it’ll get ugly quick.

Rev in Tampa

February 8th, 2011
7:18 pm

I wish Al were playing. Hawks are only 1.5 games back of the Bulls and 1.5 in front of the Magic. At least keep Al on the bench if needed. He can skip the All-Star game to get the needed rest.

coolio

February 8th, 2011
7:19 pm

zaza suckssssssssssssss

Najeh Davenpoop

February 8th, 2011
7:19 pm

Bibby takes so long to go around the screen that he can’t even put a hand up against Jrue Holiday, who makes the open shot.

man man

February 8th, 2011
7:20 pm

thank you bibby

Najeh Davenpoop

February 8th, 2011
7:20 pm

Joe needs to settle down. He has had two good looks in the post and missed both of them. Those are shots he has to make in this game.

J.J.M

February 8th, 2011
7:21 pm

man please bench zaza

Najeh Davenpoop

February 8th, 2011
7:21 pm

“we’re garbage without Josh defensively, but we’re garbage without Al offensively”

Co-sign.

hawks_4_life

February 8th, 2011
7:22 pm

Najeh Davenpoop

February 8th, 2011
7:22 pm

Haahahahaahahahahahahahahaha

man man

February 8th, 2011
7:22 pm

coolio

February 8th, 2011
7:23 pm

sport center not top ten

cp

February 8th, 2011
7:24 pm

smh Bibby. Its just frustrating watching him attempt to play defense

J.J.M

February 8th, 2011
7:24 pm

TYPICAL MARVIN

Najeh Davenpoop

February 8th, 2011
7:24 pm

Sixers already going zone, and Hawks already confused.

J.J.M

February 8th, 2011
7:25 pm

Melvin

February 8th, 2011
7:25 pm

Hawks look awful in this 1st qtr…

J.J.M

February 8th, 2011
7:26 pm

man im turning from this crap

Melvin

February 8th, 2011
7:26 pm

BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO

dakid

February 8th, 2011
7:27 pm

we got two 7 footers on the bench and josh playing center.smh

cp

February 8th, 2011
7:27 pm

Hawks with absolutely no energy at all smdh

Najeh Davenpoop

February 8th, 2011
7:27 pm

I think it’s safe to say that Teague cannot possibly make this situation worse.

hawks_4_life

February 8th, 2011
7:28 pm

Grim

February 8th, 2011
7:28 pm

but joe is worth 120 million.wow.GoSH he act like he can’t score.

Sautee

February 8th, 2011
7:29 pm

Nice first quarter, and at home, yet.

Ugh.

lewis

February 8th, 2011
7:29 pm

hopefully jamal can score those points he just gave up

Jae Evolution

February 8th, 2011
7:29 pm

“It seems like we are always behind when we play them,” J.J. said. “We have to come out with the mindset to get off to a good start, especially against their bigs.”

Way to do the exact OPPOSITE of what you guys game planned for…

Najeh Davenpoop

February 8th, 2011
7:30 pm

To be honest, it doesn’t seem like the Hawks’ half court defense has been that bad. The Sixers have had a ton of fast break opportunities thanks to the 5 turnovers and many bricked jumpers in this quarter for the Hawks.

ATL FAN

February 8th, 2011
7:31 pm

Wtf I turn it on and I see the score?? Whats happened???

Najeh Davenpoop

February 8th, 2011
7:31 pm

“Nice first quarter, and at home, yet.”

Do you get the feeling that this team is actually a better road team this year? Somehow I do. It seems like they have had a lot of games at home, especially recently, when they have played sluggish like this and either squeaked out a win they may not have deserved or lost a game they could have won with more energy.

ATL FAN

February 8th, 2011
7:32 pm

way to go teague… our future PG right there….

O'Brien

February 8th, 2011
7:33 pm

I thought the motion offense was supposed to cure these low quarters? We will be luck to score 15. And to think, we have been off for a couple days.

Meanwhile, bad play by teague. 6 turnovers for the Hawks already.

Hawks were down 18 to the Sixers last game before rallying to win. Do they have another rally in them without Horford?

Najeh Davenpoop

February 8th, 2011
7:33 pm

Only three Hawks have scored. The Hawks’ role players are doing diddly poo offensively.

terrell

February 8th, 2011
7:33 pm

hawks_4_life

February 8th, 2011
7:33 pm

did the game start yet?

Jae Evolution

February 8th, 2011
7:35 pm

Why didn’t Teague call for the damn ball??? Josh almost cost us a turnover because Teague is playing like a baby boy out there DAMN!