Lineup changes could be coming after three-game slide

Vivlamore at practice on Tuesday. Here is your report:

No real news on the Hawks continued search for a big man to help their depleted corp – but changes could be on the way in light of the current three-game losing streak.

In talking with Larry Drew following this morning’s practice, the coach said he is considering a number of changes to get the team’s energy back. It’s something he said has been lacking in the past three games.

“We are not going to panic,” Drew said. “This is not a time to panic. Is it a time for concern? Yes. My biggest concern is our energy. The energy I saw on that road trip, since we’ve been home I just don’t see that type of energy. That is my biggest concern.

“When you get in these types of situations, you’ve got to do something to generate some type of energy. You’ve got to find our mojo back. How we do it, we possibly have to look at some things a little differently and maybe shake some things up. As a staff, we are still talking it. I’m still looking at possibly doing that. We’ll see what happens.”

Like lineup changes?, I asked.

“That is always a possibility,” Drew said. “It’s not just losing the three games, it’s the way we are playing. It’s the energy. It’s the urgency. It’s the combination of players who are out on the floor, starters versus guys who come off the bench. I’ve got to try to find that combination. I’ve got to find whatever it’s going to take in order for us to get that swagger back.”

Stay tuned on that front. We’ll check in Wednesday morning before the game against the Pacers.

* I asked Jerry Stackhouse, who had his contract guaranteed after close of business Tuesday, whether there had been a team meeting to address the current slide.

“We’ve met,” Stackhouse said. “It’s kind of overdue, having a meeting and some sessions about what is going on. The fact that guys might think that they know, but might still have to be prodded and told what to do daily or even on a possession-to-possession basis sometimes. It’s not that guys don’t want to do it, it just has to be reinforced. We have to reinforce some things as far as our principles. I thought there were stretches [in Monday’s loss to the Suns] where we were better in some of those principles but as the game wore on we reverted back to not helping each other, not trusting each other and that’s where we go wrong. Once we find that and get a win, winning is always a cure-all when you are in the midst of a losing streak.”

* On the search for a big man, Drew once again acknowledged the team needs some help at the center position with Al Horford out and Jason Collins on the shelf for two weeks. Drew said there would be another meeting Tuesday to discuss the situation.

“There is a list and we’ve talked about the list but nothing has really materialized as far as a name that really gets us excited,” Drew said. “We are going to talk today, as a matter of fact, and go over some more names. Try to find a name that makes more sense for us, whether it’s a 10-day [contract], whether it’s a player like a Kenyon Martin that is still available, which I don’t think there is. Right now we are looking at the list and see what makes sense for us so we can get some help at the five spot.”

Columnist Jeff Schultz gives his take on the need for a big man.

* Look for my feature on guard Willie Green on ajc.com a little later and in Wednesday’s print edition.

335 comments Add your comment

joeygt1

February 7th, 2012
5:01 pm

joeygt1

February 7th, 2012
5:01 pm

being a longtime hawks fan is hard… they are so frustrating to watch…one game they look like championship contenders and they other they look like a lottery bound team..al horford being out has been harder for the hawks then expected bc while the hawks were winning it was against smaller teams..look the last thre games we have faced 3 bigger teams as in pf and the c postion and we got dominated.. sund we need to get a competant big in here pronto.. if not this losing streak with the hawks will get worse

Najeh Davenpoop

February 7th, 2012
5:03 pm

FTPB

“I swear;
If kirk and Al were not white;
I do not think they would catch half the crap, on this blog,
that seems to fly their way !”

Al is white?

Spyro

February 7th, 2012
5:06 pm

Hell, start Ivan at C. Reward the man.

Mac-Town (#maconchevyrider)

February 7th, 2012
5:11 pm

“The energy I saw on that road trip, since we’ve been home I just don’t see that type of energy. That is my biggest concern”

Maybe, just maybe, it could be that the level of competition has raised greatly???

Najeh Davenpoop

February 7th, 2012
5:11 pm

The Hawks need roster changes, not lineup changes.

If they are going to make a short term lineup change, one possibility may be starting Ivan at PF and bringing Josh off the bench. Josh doesn’t like playing with Teague, the starting lineup may benefit from Ivan’s energy, and playing against backups may get Josh’s offensive game going again.

To be clear, Josh still should be getting starters’ minutes; just saying maybe switching the rotation up this way would change the team’s energy. Of course the risk is that the starting unit would be questionable at best at help defense.

The more obvious change should be to the rotation, not the lineup. Quit taking Teague out six minutes into every game.

Luke Cage

February 7th, 2012
5:12 pm

I got so frustrated with last night that I just logged off and went back to work, I believe Kirk should be behind Pargo for one thing. Saw where someone said that old man Nash played the entire 1st qtr while LD always takes Teague out after about 5-6min into the game?? His substitution pattern needs to change as well.

Luke Cage

February 7th, 2012
5:12 pm

oh yeah, SWEET CHRISTMAS!!!

MattP

February 7th, 2012
5:13 pm

It is funny seeing LD talk about finding energy. If you want energy why don’t you play the guys that bring the energy and care about the game more?

Nique's Revenge

February 7th, 2012
5:14 pm

Lineup change? New coach?? YES!

NBA quality coach this time, please.

Slimjr

February 7th, 2012
5:15 pm

I finally realize some people are just obsessed with trivial chit like someone’s skin..You just have to ignore em…Move on like water under a bridge.. Let em take it up when they meet with their creator down the line…..YAWN>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>{et al}

O'Brien

February 7th, 2012
5:15 pm

From Jeff Schultz new blog;

“We certainly need another big body here,” coach Larry Drew said.

Also, maybe therapy. It’s natural that after a stretch that has seen the Hawks trail by 20-plus points in three straight home losses, Drew is wondering where his players’ heads are at.

“As much as you don’t want it to affect your team players, it’s got to be in the back of their minds — it’s got to be,” he said. “Hopefully they can move forward and get through this.”

” I hope we’re not in a situation where some of these guys have hit a wall already because there’s just too much basketball that has to be played,” Drew said.

It’s nobody’s fault that Horford and Collins got hurt. But fixing it? That’s on Sund.

Yes, he’s in a difficult situation. But he gets paid for difficult situations. Doing nothing is beyond dangerous, unless the mindset of the organization is, “Well, let’s just try to make the playoffs as a No. 8 seed.”

Sund says he’s not opposed to making a trade. But he acknowledges, “Having a full roster and a full season would make that easier.”.

When the Hawks were rolling during the road trip, Sund said a player approached him and asked the general manager if he had any concerns about the team.

Sund’s response: “I wanted to see how we would respond when there’s a bump in the road, like a losing streak.”

This qualifies as a bump. We’re about to find out something. Prepare to cover your eyes.

It appears to me that Sund and LD are putting it all on the current players. The Hawks are showing some cracks, so the question is, will they stop the leaking, or will the walls come tumbling down.

O'Brien

February 7th, 2012
5:16 pm

For the record, It appears to me that Sund and LD are putting it all on the current players. The Hawks are showing some cracks, so the question is, will they stop the leaking, or will the walls come tumbling down.. was Me, not Schultz.

Luke Cage

February 7th, 2012
5:17 pm

Also I still see alot of times after rebounds Teague not getting the ball, Suns announcer Eddie Johnson noticed as well that we have too many guys bringing the ball up and getting into bad positions which results in bad shots or turnovers. I said it last year “FREE JEFF TEAGUE”, let him play.

lea

February 7th, 2012
5:17 pm

horrible idea najeh, I am GLAD you are not the coach of this team.

lea

February 7th, 2012
5:19 pm

And do you have any proof besides your opinion that josh doesn’t like playing with teague?

Astro Joe

February 7th, 2012
5:20 pm

LD threatened line-up changes last year during a slide. Who starts is fairly irrelevant to a team’s uccess. Rooyal Ivey once started for this team and sat down 5 minutes into the 1st and 3rd quarters and we never saw him again. Twin has started several games against teams other than the Magic and often follows the same pattern. Starting is only important to a player’s ego (or fans who don’t know better). Minute distribution is what truly matters. And given the personnel on this team, LD has few optiions.

flash

February 7th, 2012
5:20 pm

Jerry Sloan Anyone?

O'Brien

February 7th, 2012
5:20 pm

Guys,

I dont believe LD and his “lineup changes”. Remember last season, how he talked about lineup changes for weeks. And despite losses and blowouts, it took him a long time before he finally made a lineup change.

And that lineup change that he eventually made last year? Starting Collins at Center, Josh at SF, and bench Marvin. The lineup change should have been start Teague.

Najeh,

What are the chances the lineup change LD makes is to start Kirk instead of Teague?

Luke Cage

February 7th, 2012
5:21 pm

I feel Josh wouldn’t handle coming off the bench, he surely would demand a trade if that happens because he would take it as he’s the blame for the “bump in the road”.

Slimjr

February 7th, 2012
5:22 pm

Pacers by 20…..Yawn…

Start Kirk, bench Teague Larry will…

Luke Cage

February 7th, 2012
5:23 pm

Starting Kirk should get him fired on the spot!!

O'Brien

February 7th, 2012
5:23 pm

AJ,

What do you think about starting T-Mac over Marvin? T-Mac is a better passer, and he might help get the offense jump started, since Teague is a scoring PG. And our offense has stagnated at times.

KevinM

February 7th, 2012
5:24 pm

LD:”There is a list and we’ve talked about the list but nothing has really materialized as far as a name that really gets us excited”

Heck no, what do you expect when your goal is to get a player with a 10 day contract. Stupid is as stupid does.

OB, Sund’s comments just floor me….how has he survived this long as a GM? It’s incredible to think that this is how he has operated for numerous teams and they’ve allowed it to happen.

And as usual, management not accepting any of the blame. Down 2 centers and here comes Indy and Orlando….is it me or is someone not doing what they are in charge of to do?

Sheesh………

Slimjr

February 7th, 2012
5:24 pm

Pargo has got to get more minutes,This guy has ton of energy!!!!!!!!!!!

Pargo should off the bench in the 1st Qtr! Not DNP or last 4 mins of the 4th?

KevinM

February 7th, 2012
5:26 pm

T-Mac / JT / Josh / Joe / Ivan

Screw the former starters……they haven’t produced.

Slimjr

February 7th, 2012
5:27 pm

“OB, Sund’s comments just floor me….how has he survived this long as a GM? It’s incredible to think that this is how he has operated for numerous teams and they’ve allowed it to happen.”

This guy has pictures or he’s a 32……

Najeh Davenpoop

February 7th, 2012
5:27 pm

“What are the chances the lineup change LD makes is to start Kirk instead of Teague?”

Haha, I didn’t want to be the one to mention it. That is a fireable offense.

“And do you have any proof besides your opinion that josh doesn’t like playing with teague?”

Just based on how I see them interacting with each other on the court, no proof.

For the record I am also glad I am not the coach of the Hawks.

Slimjr

February 7th, 2012
5:29 pm

Larry’s new lineup:

KH/Josh/Joe/Marvin/Hands of Stone

Yawn…..

flash

February 7th, 2012
5:33 pm

Kirk and Marvin for Ellis and Udoh

joe kill

February 7th, 2012
5:37 pm

dude how do u know teague doesntlike playing with josh if anything teague and josh should flow well together becuse of teagues quickness to get to the basket and throw lobs for jsmooth the suns zone did give us fits last night though they just have to get better shots in my opinion move the ball around and get easy points in transition this three game slump is nothing to be considerened about the hawks will be fine.

Rod from College Park

February 7th, 2012
5:39 pm

The obvious and common sense moves all involve removing Marvin from the starting lineup. It should have been done 3 years ago. You either start McGrady at the 3, and bench Marvin, or you start Ivan at the 4, and move Josh to the 3. It’s really not that difficult. You also could start Willie Green or Kirk, at the 2, move Joe to the 3. Any of those changes make you a better starting unit than starting Marvin at the 3.

Cal Bowdlers 7th foul

February 7th, 2012
5:40 pm

I see Josh barking at JT and JT rolling his eyes. That looks they don’t like playing together to me.

MattP

February 7th, 2012
5:43 pm

IMO, Drew did a lineup change, and that is Hinrich taking Pargo’s minutes. The bench play so much better with Pargo playing along side Green and McGrady. Look at last night, Pargo and Green almost made a comeback with the Suns starters out there

TMACfan

February 7th, 2012
5:51 pm

Start McGrady for a game, I tell you now good things will happen. Just one game, that’s all I ask.

KBB

February 7th, 2012
5:54 pm

Teague has hit a wall.

SteveW

February 7th, 2012
5:55 pm

So Stack is fully guaranteed now? Interesting

Some sportscaster on ESPN 411 just made an impassioned plea for Joe Johnson to make the All Star team, even saying get your bags packed, because your in.

jhan

February 7th, 2012
5:57 pm

Hopefully he continues to play KH so he can be traded. The Hawks looked better when he was on the bench. Someone must covet his expiring contract if nothing else. I don’t think T-Mac will last too long getting starters minutes – better to keep him coming off the bench. I do like the JT/Joe/Josh/Ivan/Pachulia lineup for a change.

SteveW

February 7th, 2012
5:58 pm

This season all 15 East Coaches pick the reserves according to ESPN. Hasn’t the Head Coach of the All Star game done this before? I wonder if that will help or hurt Josh’s chances?

CP

February 7th, 2012
6:06 pm

Trade Kirk for a big.

CP

February 7th, 2012
6:07 pm

cosign: JT/Joe/Josh/Ivan/Pachulia

prison mike

February 7th, 2012
6:21 pm

Don’t know where benching Josh comes from. It’s either start Ivan or Tmac. Marvin has always had energy issues. He’s was a filmed jump roping during halftime trying to get his metabolism up.

Luke Cage

February 7th, 2012
6:25 pm

If Ivan starts then you get very TINY with the 2nd unit, who plays center?? Marvin??

crazy_88

February 7th, 2012
6:30 pm

Start Tracy at the 3 and let Marvin come off the bench. He’s had 4 yrs to prove that he was worthy of being the second pick in the draft and we all know that he hasn’t come close to living up to the hype. He’s the ” Kwame Brown ” of SF’s and what the Hawks need in the starting lineup is a legitimate PLAYMAKER !!!

Jeff Teague is like a young driver learning how to operate a stick shift. He doesn’t know how to control his gears and ends up driving at a 100 miles per hour when he should be doing 40-50. He has tunnel vision when he attacks the basket and doesn’t exercise enough patience to let the play unfold like he should. The rest of the starters don’t trust his decision making ability which is why Joe & Josh are always hijacking the ball from him.

I used to think that Joe Johnson was a decent playmaker and he’s reverted to jacking up tough fade away jump shots and runners in the lane that only connect 40 percent of the time. If a defender closes out on his airspace he doesn’t even use his dribbling skills to attack the basket anymore.

Josh Smith….where do we begin ? He’s cut back on launching bad 3’s only to shoot bad 2’s at the absolute wrong time of the game. He plays on the perimeter way too much when he should be running the wing and attacking the basket…

Tracy brings a level of calm when guys are trying to do too much..Joe and Josh do try to do as much on the own when Tracy has the ball because they know he is going to create a play that will lead to an easy basket or at the very least send one of them to the free throw line.

LD can still play Tracy 20-25 minutes per game…He just needs to have him in the game a lot sooner and he needs to be given more of a role in the offense as a play maker ..scorer..or both..

Add swingman depth

February 7th, 2012
6:31 pm

Phew! Great news that we guaranteed stackhouse’s contract. We are so thin at wing position. My lobbying paid off! Just need to add another swingman stack type or 2

And acquire ramon sessions from the cavs for our firstrounder, go hawks!

Jody

February 7th, 2012
6:37 pm

Anyone who watches can clearly see that Teague gets frustratex because Josh will rebound the ball and try to bring the ball up himself to make a “let me be the hero” pass that too often results in a turnover. I also see Josh deliberatly not swing the ball to JT in half court sets. Thats a problem folks. JT should be allowed to be the point guard without any resistance.

ntrigue

February 7th, 2012
6:40 pm

The lineup changes that drew is talking about is hinrich for Teague watch our coach doesnt have a clue!

MattP

February 7th, 2012
6:41 pm

ntrigue,

I hate to say it but that will be the change.

crazy_88

February 7th, 2012
6:42 pm

Solomon Jones just got released from the Clippers…not saying he’s a game changer but he’s 6′10 with 5 yrs experience in the league…worthy of a 10 day contract…..

MattP

February 7th, 2012
6:42 pm

We all know it is coming. lol