Atlanta Hawks: Larry Drew’s dilemma

Washington–I honestly don’t know the right answer to this health vs. momentum dilemma faced by L.D. There is some inherent contradiction in his declaration that health is most important and his desire to finish the season with momentum but, in my view at least, both have merit.

Several Hawks players are banged up and could probably use some rest but don’t they also have to stay in tune? The team hasn’t played well since February but, at this point, aren’t the Hawks as good as they are going to get and so the “fine tuning” L.D. is looking for is too little, too late?

You can sense that players also aren’t quite sure how to feel about the situation.

J.J. says health is the main concern but in the next breath he says he wants to get his game in gear. “My main concern right now is getting into some kind of rhythm going into the playoffs,” he said.

Al says it’s important for the Hawks to “get better as a team and keep up our shape” but then comes out of the equation favoring time off.

“I wouldn’t be opposed to that, just being honest,” he said. “But I think [L.D.] would rather have us play.”

Drew said he still doesn’t plan to sit any of his regulars. Instead, he’d like for the Hawks’ reserves to play well enough that the starters wouldn’t be required to play extended minutes.

“If I’ve got bench guys out there and they are in a real good rhythm I will leave the starters on the bench as long as I can,” he said. “If it’s not getting anywhere and we’re not playing well or we are not in a good rhythm, I don’t want to finish the season like that. I want to finish feeling good about how we play.”

Notes

  • Al on the ankle: “It’s good. It’s as good as it’s been, so that’s good news. I am pretty much back to normal.”
  • Joe on the thumb: “It’s all right. It’s never going to be 100 percent until the season is over but it’s nothing that is going to stop me from doing anything. I’ve just got to play through it.”
  • Joe on the elbow: “It’s good as it’s going to get.” How good is that? “It’s pretty much 100 percent. It feels a little weak every now and then but it’s good.”
  • Marvin on his back: “I feel pretty good. It gets sore at times.”
  • JC2 and Mo visited with Hawks players and team personnel after they got up shots prior to the game.
  • “It was good seeing them again,” Jordan said. “I was real close friends with them. It became like a family in the little time I was there. I expect to spend more time with them through the years. I talk to them all the time. They always congratulate me after every game.”
  • Jordan on his feelings at the time of the trade: “I knew it was a business coming in. They wanted to try to make a playoff push. Now I am getting playing time. It was good for both of us.”
  • With the Wizards, JC2 is averaging 33.2 minutes, 17.2 points and 16.6 shots. “You have got to play to get better,” he said. “Hopefully next year we win more games. That’s my goal.”
  • Drew on JC2: “We are going to treat him like any other scorer. We have to be with him on the catch. We have to affect the pick-and-roll but more importantly keep him contained and not let him get it going.”

Michael Cunningham, Hawks beat

318 comments Add your comment

northcyde

April 9th, 2011
7:11 pm

tremaine

April 9th, 2011
7:11 pm

“GIVE TEAGUE A CHANCE!”

northcyde

April 9th, 2011
7:12 pm

I’ve been on injured reserve the past few days. Had to get my damn gall bladder taken out of me. I’ve never been shot, but this is how it has to feel. I’m sore as hell.

But I’m back in time to see “The Jordan Crawford Show”.

Hopefully the Hawks won’t play around with these dudes and kill them early. Nice opening shot by Marvin.

tremaine

April 9th, 2011
7:14 pm

Well look like Jordan Crawford will be on the bench early.

Sautee

April 9th, 2011
7:17 pm

If Al is back to normal then I want 10+ rebounds.

northcyde

April 9th, 2011
7:17 pm

My biggest fear is that both Wall and Crawford turn out to be good guards. And they already have a nice frontcourt in McGee and Blatche. All they need is a SF.

So imagine if this team won the NBA Lottery, and got the kid from Arizona . . . Derrick Williams. That’s going to be a nice young team to build on. And they’re enough under the cap, even with a new agreement, that they could add a nice vet free agent or two.

The last thing we need is for Washington to start being a tough out for us, and approach being a .500 team right away.

northcyde

April 9th, 2011
7:18 pm

SMH . . already looking like garbage.

bigdave

April 9th, 2011
7:18 pm

yuck.

put in Jeff..

bigdave

April 9th, 2011
7:18 pm

i think i smelled the same thing northcyde.

tremaine

April 9th, 2011
7:19 pm

How did we not get McGee in that trade?

tremaine

April 9th, 2011
7:20 pm

Larry Doo should have just rested these guys. The last two nights they have shown that they don’t want to be out there anyway.

northcyde

April 9th, 2011
7:21 pm

Because the Wiz aren’t stupid @ tremaine.

No way they give McGee up for Bibby and Jordan. We were the desperate team, not them. That’s why we didn’t mind making that trade for “so called scrubs”.

cp

April 9th, 2011
7:22 pm

sloppy and sluggish

northcyde

April 9th, 2011
7:23 pm

Wow . . WTF is wrong with Horford? Grab the rebound off the bat? Come on Al . . this is NOT the time to go soft on us.

Wabe

April 9th, 2011
7:24 pm

Free Jeff Teague

Sautee

April 9th, 2011
7:24 pm

northcyde,

too late!

tremaine

April 9th, 2011
7:24 pm

northcyde

April 9th, 2011
7:21 pm
Because the Wiz aren’t stupid @ tremaine.

No way they give McGee up for Bibby and Jordan. We were the desperate team, not them. That’s why we didn’t mind making that trade for “so called scrubs”.

And they get our first pick. SAD!!!

northcyde

April 9th, 2011
7:25 pm

cp

April 9th, 2011
7:25 pm

Armstrong is terrible

northcyde

April 9th, 2011
7:26 pm

Bad shot JJ . . you’re a 29% 3 point shooter.

northcyde

April 9th, 2011
7:26 pm

LOL. . . seriously? We’re about to get ran by the Wizards?

Wabe

April 9th, 2011
7:27 pm

Free Jeff Teague you f’n bum coach

cp

April 9th, 2011
7:27 pm

this team might not get out of the first round

Wabe

April 9th, 2011
7:27 pm

tremaine

April 9th, 2011
7:27 pm

TEAGUE!!!!!!!!!!!

Iceman

April 9th, 2011
7:30 pm

Wall is to fast, he will penetrate then dish to a big man

tremaine

April 9th, 2011
7:32 pm

I bet McGee use to abuse Hilton Armstrong in practice. Thats probably why he looks scared out there. SMH!!!

cp

April 9th, 2011
7:33 pm

good block Teague

northcyde

April 9th, 2011
7:33 pm

tremaine

April 9th, 2011
7:34 pm

Nice move Wall. Way to go back at him Teague.

bigdave

April 9th, 2011
7:35 pm

looked like good D to me..

cp

April 9th, 2011
7:35 pm

Teague is still in attack mode and its good to see

Darnell

April 9th, 2011
7:37 pm

Looks like the jump shots aren’t falling so far tonight Man, I hate this jump-shooting offense. Drew is such a poor coach. He’s below mediocre at this point. I can’t even believe the level of his stupidity. He actually had Jamal matched up on Wall when Teague was in the game. Drew continues to amaze me with his lack of knowledge. Just incredible…

northcyde

April 9th, 2011
7:37 pm

The JJ effect . . . Jordan really didn’t even look to score on JJ but once.

But on the other end, he picked up 2 quick fouls trying to guard JJ.

It’ll be interesting how aggressive Jordan is, when he comes back in the 2nd quarter, especially if Drew has the “2 foul rule” in full effect for JJ.

northcyde

April 9th, 2011
7:39 pm

2 rebounds for Al. This dude has to start rebounding.

drmaryb (*_-)

April 9th, 2011
7:39 pm

Get Well Soon!

Northcyde, please get well soon! Did you have laproscopy-sp surgery?
We sure missed you.

northcyde

April 9th, 2011
7:39 pm

Lester . . come on man. Not ready to play?

Art Vandelay

April 9th, 2011
7:39 pm

Sometimes, I don’t even care if the shot doesn’t go in – it’s so refreshing to see our PG being able / willing to penetrate!

FREE TEAGUE

Aaron

April 9th, 2011
7:40 pm

Wow, the Hawks really look terrible, and it’s not just due to the fact that we have injuries. The offense looks awful. It looks by far worse than any other playoff team. Meanwhile. the team defense is nearly nonexistent. I hope the reason for this is just because the players don’t care much about these last few games, because if they are actually trying and this is what the effort shows, we may get embarrassed worse than last year in the playoffs this year. With Drew coaching the team, I wouldn’t be surprised if we lost by an average margin of 20+ points in the playoffs.

Najeh Davenpoop

April 9th, 2011
7:41 pm

TRADE SMOOVE!

(lmao)

Sautee

April 9th, 2011
7:41 pm

northcyde,

But isn’t it great that Al is “back to normal”? ;-)

cp

April 9th, 2011
7:41 pm

Etan is garbage smh

northcyde

April 9th, 2011
7:42 pm

yep @ drmaryb.

I had 2 gallstones blocking my bile duct, causing me to go to the ER on Wednesday night. My 3rd attack like that in 5 days.

Then my bladder was full of stones. So they had to clear the bile duct and remove the gallbladder. Hopefully this will solve the problem, along with a much needed diet change.

northcyde

April 9th, 2011
7:43 pm

LOL @ Sautee. I noticed that dude wasn’t rebounding consistently back in January. It’s definitely a concern.

Damn . . Jordan looked real good on that break.

tremaine

April 9th, 2011
7:43 pm

Art Vandelay

April 9th, 2011
7:39 pm
Sometimes, I don’t even care if the shot doesn’t go in – it’s so refreshing to see our PG being able / willing to penetrate!

FREE TEAGUE

co-sign

Najeh Davenpoop

April 9th, 2011
7:43 pm

A few relatively obvious observations:

-For a guy who has been his team’s #1 option for six years now, Joe is remarkably awful at passing out of double teams.
-For a guy who, by every available metric, is the best defensive player on this team, Smoove’s defense is awfully underappreciated by Hawks fans.
-Whenever Teague has controlled the ball, good things have happened. Unfortunately, as long as he’s on the floor with Jamal, he’s not going to control the ball more often than not.
-Jordan Crawford looks pretty nice.

Aaron

April 9th, 2011
7:43 pm

“2 rebounds for Al. This dude has to start rebounding.”

I can’t figure out what is up with Al. For most of the season, he was rebounding the ball really well. He even had a long stretch where he was averaging 10+ boards a night. However, for the last month or so, his rebounding has looked terrible, overall. I don’t know if he was/is hurt/injured and just hasn’t said anything, or if he’s just not into the games, or what the problem is. This is definitely worrying me though, because Al is one of only two consistent rebounders on the team. I hope the problem is just that he’s taking it easy these last couple of games because if he rebounds like this in the playoffs, we are going to be in some serious trouble.

tremaine

April 9th, 2011
7:44 pm

Wow, we about to lose by 40+ to the Washington Wizards. SAD!!!

cp

April 9th, 2011
7:44 pm

this is flat out ugly.

Najeh Davenpoop

April 9th, 2011
7:45 pm

So when the Hawks lose this game in a manner just as embarrassing as their losses to Philadelphia and New Orleans earlier this year, will people start anointing Smoove as the Hawks’ MVP the way they did for Al when he missed those games? Just wondering.