Atlanta Hawks: Hawks 92, Bobcats 75 (exhibition)

  • In just five days the games will count for the Hawks. It’s hard to know what conclusions can be drawn from two exhibition games against one of the worst teams in the East. So I guess most of the following analysis comes with that disclaimer.
  • Fans responded to Ivan Johnson’s energetic, physical play. So did his teammates. “I was impressed,” Al Horford said. “The thing I like the most about him is he’s aggressive. He goes out there and plays hard. He’s fearless. I think he would be a nice addition to our team.”
  • I never would have thought so–Johnson is an undersized, over-aged prospect at a position where the Hawks have up to five guys as options. But Johnson has produced and made the most of his chance, earning a “very close look” from Drew.
  • “When we had him in the minicamp the thing that intrigued me was how hard he played,” Drew said. “He is capable of making shots but he’s like a Mack truck in there at times. If you get in his way he will run you over. If there is a loose ball he doesn’t care who’s around him, he’s going after it. We need that on our team. He brings a presence when he’s on the floor, a physicality when he’s on the floor.”
  • There were times when the Hawks looked like a bona fide, hard-nosed defensive team. “We really committed to it,” Horford said.
  • Atlanta’s defense improved once Jannero Pargo replaced Donald Sloan at point guard. Pargo had more success keeping D.J. Augustin and Kemba Walker out of the lane.
  • The Hawks look a lot different when Jeff Teague (ankle) is in the lineup to slow dribble penetration. Teague said he would be ready to go on Tuesday.
  • Sloan (three assists, no turnovers) was steadier on offense than he was Monday. “I thought he did a good job stepping in for Jeff Teague in running the club,” Drew said.
  • Brad Wanamaker played six ineffective minutes in the second quarter, turning the ball over three times, and then never saw the court again. Pape Sy wasn’t as aggressive as in the first game but played just 10 minutes.
  • The Bobcats were able to finish at the rim but that was in spite of Josh Smith and Al Horford challenging everything at the basket (Walker is going to be a good one). Smith and Horford also led an energetic effort when the Hawks trapped.
  • Zaza Pachulia was good on D, too. He stays in good position and challenges everything (if only he could jump higher those more of those would be blocked shots). He rebounds and gets to the line. Zaza quietly had a very good camp.
  • Smith got what he wanted around the basket. I’m thinking the newly-slim frame and better health means we’ll see more of that this season. He’s so quick to the hole and even more explosive when he gets there.
  • Joe Johnson had a bad shooting night (3 for 11) but it looked to me like he often was just working on his one-on-one moves. He had his hesitation game working and got to the line for six free-throw attempts. Joe also had five assists against two turnovers and a couple scrappy steals.
  • Tracy McGrady looked a little livelier while getting to the free-throw line early. But Corey Maggette really took it to him at the other end and McGrady had to start fouling. McGrady also didn’t make a shot in three attempts and failed to record an assist in 14 minutes.
  • It wasn’t a good camp for T-Mac. The Hawks have to hope he will dial it up when they need him.
  • Vladimir Radmonovic (11 points on five shots) has shown a crafty show-and-go game from the 3-point line. He will drive to the basket and then look to pass or draw a foul. A couple of his four turnovers were a result of him zigging while his teammates zagged.
  • “It’s going to take some time, especially with this short preseason,” Radmanovic said. “I have to learn some things on the run. I feel pretty comfortable with the system. It’s just a matter of figuring out some spots on the floor where I’m going to be open or make my teammates open.”

Michael Cunningham, Hawks beat

200 comments Add your comment

SteveW

December 22nd, 2011
11:26 pm

Last I checked we were at 69.7m, with Sy, Benson, and Rolle’s contract, but before Pargo and Green. Vets will count between $800-900,000.00 towards the tax. on minimum contracts. Other guys between $400-500,000.00. But Sy and Rolle had 788,000.00 contracts, a little more than the Sloan, Ivan Johnson’s of the world. So you cut Sy and Rolle, you have a payroll with Pargo and Green at about 69.9 mill.

Room for 1 rookie besides Benson before the Luxury Tax, or right at it – would it be Sloan or Ivan? Or would ASG pocket the cash and not get anyone else? Or go into Luxury Tax for Stack? Interesting

SteveW

December 22nd, 2011
11:28 pm

Keep Ivan, Benson, waive Sy, Rolle, and Sloan. Wanamaker and Stack also.

SteveW

December 22nd, 2011
11:29 pm

I knew we would keep Johnson when LD used his pet term “physicality” to describe him..

Buddy Grizzard

December 22nd, 2011
11:30 pm

BOGANS.

HERE.

YESTERDAY.

Is T-Mac really your backup SG? Is Pape Sy? Come on let’s get some NBA players in here.

Buddy Grizzard

December 22nd, 2011
11:30 pm

PS I want my Ivan Johnson jersey.

SteveW

December 22nd, 2011
11:30 pm

Rev – I give VladRad a B+ – Better than I thought he was to this point

wut

December 22nd, 2011
11:34 pm

You said it yourself. Easy for some players to look good vs the worst in the East. And some guys are just trying to get back in the groove after such a short camp.

Section 303

December 22nd, 2011
11:37 pm

Was at the game tonight. Debuted our new seats, first row of Section 212. Seats are great!

I have to think Ivan Johnson made the team tonight. He was fun to watch. I also think he looks like a bada$$. The Hawks need someone like that.

Also, might have to take back what I said yesterday about Pargo. I actually thought he played well tonight. For someone who just joined the team, he jumped right in and took control. He handles the ball well and thinks pass first. He might be a good pickup, after all.

Johnson, Pargo, and whoever else makes the final roster are all going to have to play. The schedule is just brutal. All guys wearing a uniform have to contribute. So, Hawks can’t waste any spots.

Hate saying this….Stackhouse probably has to go. I am a big fan of his. Have always liked his game. But, unless he can bring back the ‘01 Jerry Stackhouse, he’s probably going back to his hoops show on XM Radio.

kwooden

December 22nd, 2011
11:37 pm

Rev I think Rad has played better than I remember. He’s aggressive on defense and has attacking the basket. (he shot as many free throws as JJ) He had several turnovers but they were just miss communication opposed to poor play. I give him a B- though, because he’s missed several open 3’s badly and he was brought here to make those shots. (2 of 6 doesn’t cut it, even though its a lot better than Joe’s 0 of 7!!)

Mike is Back

December 22nd, 2011
11:40 pm

Say what you want about Pargo…but for someone who just join team…Dude more than held his own. The thing I like is he didn’t force up a lot of bad shots…once he gets more comfortable running the offense…he will able to score too.

Neither Benson nor Rolle help their cause tonight…sometimes it just bad timing…Ivan Johnson was clearly superior to those two guys.

I know Rolle is playing with an injury…and Benson is just giving up too much weight…it just wasn’t their time.

I would like to see us send Benson and Rolle to Dleague…even if means cutting SY.

GO HAWKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Slimjr

December 22nd, 2011
11:41 pm

“The Bobcats were able to finish at the rim but that was in spite of Josh Smith and Al Horford challenging everything at the basket”

Same ole ish..seenitb4…….

Slimjr

December 22nd, 2011
11:46 pm

Whats wrong with Joe’s shot? He made em look easy in the scrimmage against his teammates now he can’t throw it in the Ocean? Somebody help this dude out…asap!

superiorblogman

December 22nd, 2011
11:46 pm

I think Rolle and Wanamaker get cut. I don’t see how we keep Stack.

Pape and Benson get a D League assignment.

13 on opening night

Jeff/Sloan/Pargo
Joe/Willie Green/
Marvin/T-Mac/Rad
Josh/Ivan
Horford/Zaza/Collins

Looking forward to next Tuesay more than XMAS

jake

December 22nd, 2011
11:47 pm

Buddy grizzard either you’r dumb or you’ve never watched bogans play much. he is garbage

Rev in Tampa

December 22nd, 2011
11:48 pm

Thanks to all for the feedback on Rad.

Section 303, are you going to change your blog-name to Section 212?

KevinM

December 22nd, 2011
11:48 pm

If Josh plays like this every night, and can swat a couple off the glass, I for one will be thankful to see the high flying Josh of old.
He deserves the recognition for his hard working offseason.
He and Johnson have stood out in my mind this preseason.
And VRad…not so bad. We still need offense out of the 2nd unit…way too many back-to-backs this time.

KevinM

December 22nd, 2011
11:49 pm

Anyone miss Bibby for the first time in preseason? Not me.

Ken Strickland

December 22nd, 2011
11:51 pm

BUDDY GRIZZARD-Give the Bogans campaign a rest. If you were paying attention, you’d know we just signed Willie Green, which eliminated any chance of us signing Bogans. Besides, common sense should tell you there’s no way the ASG would go into luxury tax territory for a one dimensional player like Bogans.

It looks like Teague will be ready to go Tuesday. Our roster will likely be:

PG-Teague/Pargo
SG-JJ/Green
SF-Marvin/TMac
PF-Josh/Radmanovic/Rolle
OC-Horford/Zaza/Collins

Rolle has more size and experience than Johnson, but I see Johnson making the inactive roster along with Sloan.

doc

December 22nd, 2011
11:54 pm

kevinm, i have not missed bibby since early 2009.

superiorblogman

December 22nd, 2011
11:55 pm

Just another way that the Hinrich trade hurt our team. It killed our youth movement.

Jeff, Marvin, Josh, Al, Jordan, and the 1st would have all been younger players.

Instead we cut Jordan and the 1st out of the equation for older players with no upside.

I am no so down on this team as I was a week ago because we have 11 players out of that 13 that have played vital roles on winning teams before. Some are past there primes but they don’t have to give us prime performances just good enough. Remains to be seen if they can do that I am willing to give it a chance. Still need a Center to take that next step, but we have some pieces to go after Kaman, Okafor, Dalembert, or Biedrins. I am okay with letting things play out and see if we can get one of those guys for a bargain trade.

Bronn

December 22nd, 2011
11:55 pm

I could use some reassurance-please tell me that JJ’s jumper looks smooth as silk in at practices! After struggling from three last year, the last thing I needed to see was him going 0-7 beyond the arc in the preaseason.

jdewayneatl

December 22nd, 2011
11:56 pm

When it all comes together, the bench will look nice. VladRad looked like he will fit in good and be productive playing with Zaza. TMac doesn’t seem into it. Hopefully he will turn it up when it matters. If we keep Ivan, he would bring energy and tenacity and would only have to play maybe 10 minutes. Willie Green can perform. Pargo can perform. And Kirk is in the waiting.

Jamal who? Instead of a 1-man bench, it could be a solid 5-6 man bench.

I really believe that once the bench gets to a comfort zone with one another, the Hawks will be a team that can get over that hump.

The Truth

December 22nd, 2011
11:57 pm

Simply put, without Ivan (the terrible) Johnson , the Hawks don’t win this game. He is a nice compliment to Josh Smith. This Guy is a keeper plus he’s cheap.

Sloan and Benson also have potential with more seasoning and they are also cheap. Since most of these additional players come with non guaranteed contracts, the Hawks should just keep the best and cut back before taxes time.

Buddy Grizzard

December 23rd, 2011
12:00 am

“Buddy grizzard either you’r dumb or you’ve never watched bogans play much. he is garbage.” – jake

82 game starter for the team with the best record in the NBA. Did you watch the Hawks-Bulls series? What did Joe Johnson do after Game 1? I understand the guy has limitations but wait until the Hawks play the Bulls and watch Rip try to D Joe Johnson. I just hope Bogans doesn’t end up on the Heat.

Ken Strickland

December 23rd, 2011
12:01 am

Looks like the Nets have already acquired a replacement for injured C BLopez. They just traded a 2nd rd pick and trade exception for Utah’s MOkur.

Maybe

December 23rd, 2011
12:01 am

Willie Green is a nice addition at the SG spot.

Looks like Sloan, Rolle, Wanamaker and Johnson will all get cut.

Nice roster. I’m feeling it. I still hope to see Sy get some minutes here and there during the season. I really like his slashing and defensive potential. He’s a good FT shooter as well.

Glad to hear Teague will be ok. Hopefully he wont loose his aggresiveness out of the gate.

PG- Teague/Hinrich/Pargo
SG- Johnson/Green/Sy
SF- Marvin/Tracy
PF- Josh/Vlad
C- Al/Zaza/Collins/Benson

ole riche

December 23rd, 2011
12:02 am

tonights game showed how vlad rad will be effective for the hawks. I think they should keep Johnson and Sy, send sloan and benson to the D league and cut the others. Pargo and willie green will be nice additions. Just gotta get teague healthy. The only thing is im not sure where stack fits into all this, if at all, but well see.

Grandmaster JeJe

December 23rd, 2011
12:07 am

Ivan Johnson – hell of a game. Dude is chiseled too – no homo.

Horford and Smoove were taking jumpshots all night, especially in the 3rd quarter.

JOSH SMITH: YOU ARE NOT A JUMPSHOOTER
JOSH SMITH: YOU ARE NOT A JUMPSHOOTER
JOSH SMITH: YOU ARE NOT A JUMPSHOOTER
JOSH SMITH: YOU ARE NOT A JUMPSHOOTER
JOSH SMITH: YOU ARE NOT A JUMPSHOOTER

Grandmaster JeJe

December 23rd, 2011
12:10 am

-T-Mac and Stack were awful out there. Neither could finish at all

-Boris Diaw is very big and out of shape

-Kemba Walker will be a special player in this league
-Taylor Griffin was ineffective

-ZaZa’s post moves are still pretty bad
-Vlad played well. He and ZaZa appear to be solid friends. They were playing 1-on-1 in shootaround

Grandmaster JeJe

December 23rd, 2011
12:13 am

Sloan looked a bit tentative and not wanting to make a mistake.

Once Teague returns and gets into the lane with ease, Radmanovic will be feasting on the 3 point line

MJ49

December 23rd, 2011
12:14 am

I wouldve liked to see Michael Pietrus

The Truth

December 23rd, 2011
12:15 am

I’m not sure what Stack vet min price tag would be vs. his likely production, probably too expensive for the ASG. With the addition of Tmac and Green, Stack is the odd man out.

Grandmaster JeJe

December 23rd, 2011
12:19 am

Pape Sy
Keith Benson
Magnum Rolle

These guys all stink. Why are they even here right now?

Sign Ivan Johnson.
Also, please sign Reggie Evans. Oh wait, we didn’t even offer him the VM

Grandmaster JeJe

December 23rd, 2011
12:19 am

The Hawks rarely ever send anyone to the NBDL either.

ole riche

December 23rd, 2011
12:23 am

Benson is NOT there yet but if the hawks could develop him, he has potential to be a legitimate big. He needs to get some bulk on him. I dont think the Hawks have a real direction with Sy. Do the want him at the point, do they want him at the 2. Not really a point guard IMO and no room at the 2. Dleauge for him i would assume. Magnum Rolle is not very good. He only seems interested in shooting a mid range turn around and not on any defense.

Hawks Fan Down Under

December 23rd, 2011
12:27 am

Time will tell. Most commentators are tipping the Hawks to slide. so we’ll see.

Didnt see either game but Ivan sounds like a keeper. Can you imagine a hard worker coming in against the Heat or Bulls last season when the core were down 20+? Wouldn’t have won but at least he’d show up how lazy they were. Sign him up (and please sack LD at the earliest possible chance)!

Grandmaster JeJe

December 23rd, 2011
12:28 am

I need quart of hateraid, I hate Josh. I do wish I was him. What, did he hit of for 23 pts tonight Fck I wish I was him.

doc

December 23rd, 2011
12:28 am

that is two young bigs now that we could have gone after for a second rounder?

send sy instead of ivan if it comes to that, please.

Grandmaster JeJe

December 23rd, 2011
12:29 am

I need quart of hater-aid, I hate Josh. I do wish I was him. What, did he hit of for 23 pts tonight Fck I wish I was him.

Grandmaster JeJe

December 23rd, 2011
12:31 am

Am I talking to my fcking self? this sh!t is getting old. I got to get a better life. Josh, I HATE YOU!

Grandmaster JeJe

December 23rd, 2011
12:31 am

Let’s be honest:

Pape Sy, Benson, and Rolle are all weak basketball players. Cut 2 of them (Rolle for sure) or send them to NBDL and sign Ivan and Dan Gadzuric

SIGN GADZURIC

Grandmaster JeJe

December 23rd, 2011
12:34 am

But more than that, Im gay.

hawks_4_life

December 23rd, 2011
12:34 am

Grandmaster JeJe

December 23rd, 2011
12:34 am

*imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.

Thanks, imitator

The Truth

December 23rd, 2011
12:35 am

Sy seems to be our newest version of Mario West. Drew investment with him is becoming problematic since he doesn’t do any one thing well enough to justify his price tag. Maybe it’s time to cut bait.

Carrlos Lyles

December 23rd, 2011
12:38 am

ivan johnson has to be signed!!!

Grandmaster JeJe

December 23rd, 2011
12:38 am

Sy sucks.

Sy Benson and Rolle are awful.

Grandmaster JeJe

December 23rd, 2011
12:39 am

How can I imitate myself? I never thought of that, but anyway I’m flattered. That I imitate myself, but I thought about it and Im not really gay. I just had a bad week with those guys.

Grandmaster JeJe

December 23rd, 2011
12:40 am

Trade Horford and Teague for Howard and a draft pick.

Grandmaster JeJe

December 23rd, 2011
12:41 am

Im flattered!