Atlanta Hawks at Bulls: Game Thread

Vivlamore reporting from Chicago.

Tracy McGrady met with Hawks coach Larry Drew and general manager Rick Sund about the forward’s publicly expressed displeasure over a lack of playing time.

Both sides say they are ready to move on.

“We talked,” McGrady said before Monday’s game against the Bulls. “Players get frustrated. I was frustrated. We talked and ironed things out. Now, we move on.”

Drew would not disclose the details of the meeting but said “we addressed the problem.”

After playing just 4:39 during a 97-77 loss to the Blazers Saturday, McGrady told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution: “I’m tired of this [bleep]. You can put that in the paper, I don’t give a [bleep].”

Drew has been mindful of McGrady’s minutes this season. The two-time NBA scoring champion has suffered through injuries, which includes a herniated disk in his back. He suffered back spasms on Jan. 11 and sat out three games.

“I’m sure everybody wants to play,” Drew said. “I want guys who want to play. I don’t want guys content to sit on the bench. But the way it was handled, you don’t handle it that way. We will keep looking at the situation of each game. I’m always looking at matchups. I’m always looking at it if it puts us at an advantage, if it puts us at a disadvantage. My job is to coach this team and I’m going to try to put us in the best position as possible. Sometimes it will jeopardize minutes when guys want to play but that is the way it is.”

Entering Monday’s game, McGrady has played in 26 of 32 games this season with average of 18 minutes.  Last season with the Pistons McGrady averaged 23 minutes in 72 games.

“If you don’t feel I can help, come tell me that,” McGrady told the AJC. “He ain’t told me nothing. I just want to help these guys win, man, which I know I can. But, damn, four minutes?”

McGrady did not get a start Monday after Marvin Williams left the team Sunday due to the death of a relative. McGrady usually is the substitute for Williams.

* Drew did not know details of the personal situation or when Williams would return to the team. The Hawks end a five-game road trip against the Knicks on Wednesday.

Willie Green got the start in place of Williams.

“Willie has really been playing well for us,” Drew said. “I think the one thing we will miss about Willie is the punch he provides off the bench. In this situation I will juggle the guys coming off the bench but I just felt from a matchup standpoint he gives us a better chance.”

* The Hawks signed center Erick Dampier to a second 10-day contract Sunday with Jason Collins out up to another month with a torn ligament in his left elbow.

The 15-year veteran has appeared in four games for the Hawks after signing his first 10-day contract on Feb. 9. He has not scored but is averaging 2.5 rebounds, 0.3 assists, 0.3 steals and 0.3 blocks in 6.5 minutes.

* Drew said he expects no issues with Joe Johnson’s left knee. The All-Star wore a soft brace to protect his problematic the knee Saturday, saying he is suffering from tendinitis around the patellar tendon.

“We will keep an eye on it,” Drew said.

812 comments Add your comment

Najeh Davenpoop

February 20th, 2012
3:22 pm

“I think the one thing we will miss about Willie is the punch he provides off the bench.”

Then bring him off the f-cking bench and start T-Mac like a normal person.

$5 says Vlad plays at least 15 minutes at power forward in this game and gets his ass kicked on the boards by Taj Gibson during those minutes, while Ivan sits on the bench.

$5 more says T-Mac plays less than 15 minutes.

$5 more says Joe is going to shoot under 40% in large part because of having to guard Luol Deng on defense.

Rose is back, Bulls will be energized, and the Hawks are floundering. Bulls by 15 is my prediction.

The Truth

February 20th, 2012
3:27 pm

With the Bulls coming off of an embarrassing loss to NJ, they will be highly motivated to bounce back in front of a home crowd and nationally televised game. The bookings got them winning by 10.5. Since they are 11-2 in their building this season, this perhaps is factored into the winning margin.

Given the fragile, depleted, and now struggle Hawks, this could get ugly. The question may not be whether we lose or not, but whether we put forth a respectable effort to make the game entertaining to watch.

We Shall See

J.J.M.

February 20th, 2012
3:31 pm

im at work but I can see the same people on here will keep everything updated

Spyro

February 20th, 2012
3:35 pm

OK, I have a bad feeling about this game. I want to believe that the Hawks will come out to try to prove something, but… ugh, Larry Drew will probably mess it up some how. We’ll probably be winning at some point, then Larry Drew will put Rad at the 5, or something stupid like that.

Also, if Teague comes out at the 6 minute mark and is playing well at that point, I’m going to blow a gasket.

rod

February 20th, 2012
3:35 pm

Marvin should see 8-9 minutes a game the most give his minutes to Tmac Marvin is garbatron to the maximum Willie Green is respectable but cmon manage this depleted roster better than this they have no Drose tonight there should be no reason we dont win but then again it is the Hawks

KevinM

February 20th, 2012
3:36 pm

I’m sure T-Mac will be ready seeing Willie getting the start.

LD knows what he’s doing…..so does his opponent.

And even if Wille exceeded Marvin’s numbers, he has no chance in staying in the first unit. Marvin pays way too much to lose his slot.

Hollywould

February 20th, 2012
3:37 pm

What is the over / under on JJ rebounds? I say 2.

rod

February 20th, 2012
3:37 pm

Sorry they will have Drose Hawks lose by 15

Hollywould

February 20th, 2012
3:38 pm

Is the game on the net?

Melvin

February 20th, 2012
3:39 pm

I’m surprise Vlad is not starting. He did a good job when he filled in for Marvin earlier in the season.

KevinM

February 20th, 2012
3:41 pm

If Joe doesn’t get up 25 shots, we don’t have a chance..

And LD’s rotations revolve around their salary numbers…..Kirk and Marvin have nothing to worry about.

terrell

February 20th, 2012
3:43 pm

Tkae your time Marvin.

terrell

February 20th, 2012
3:46 pm

LD is a clown.TMac shoulda pimp slapped him.

Chris Vivlamore

February 20th, 2012
3:46 pm

Bulls just announced that Derrick Rose will play and start. Was listed as a game-time decision by Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau before the game.

terrell

February 20th, 2012
3:48 pm

Teague out at the 4 min mark of the 1st qtr. Guarantee it. Doesnt matter if he’s playing well or not. And again, take your time Marvin.

terrell

February 20th, 2012
3:53 pm

LD just said “We’ll be a lot smaller without Marvin”. lmao. So what? Marvin plays small as hell. lol.

Rod from College Park

February 20th, 2012
3:57 pm

“I’m sure everybody wants to play,” Drew said. “I want guys who want to play. I don’t want guys content to sit on the bench. But the way it was handled, you don’t handle it that way. We will keep looking at the situation of each game. I’m always looking at matchups. I’m always looking at it if it puts us at an advantage, if it puts us at a disadvantage. My job is to coach this team and I’m going to try to put us in the best position as possible. Sometimes it will jeopardize minutes when guys want to play but that is the way it is.”

There is no way possible that Drew believes this. I have come to the conclusion that Drew has no idea what he is doing. I have not seen him take advantage of any mismatches this year except for the Pheonix game, when he kept going to Josh on the post, but then he went right back to the Iso Joe play at the end, and almost cost us the game. If you look at matchups then why did you not play Ivan Johnson in the Philly game, when Elton Brand was killing us on the boards. If you look at matchups then why do you keep starting Marvin Williams, who has given you nothing all year, when Green, and TMac obviously give you more, and should be starting. If you look at matchups, why do you keep giving Joe the ball at the top of the key when he is guarded by much smaller players, instead of posting him up? Effort and energy don’t help when you are outmatched, and playing 5 agianst 3 offensively every night.

terrell

February 20th, 2012
3:57 pm

Hope Willie plays well. Put Marvin on the bench PERMANENTLY!

terrell

February 20th, 2012
3:59 pm

Agreed Rod. LD’s just talking out of the side of his mouth.

O'Brien

February 20th, 2012
4:01 pm

Najeh,

Ivan’s game log (minutes played) for the last 6 games. 10, 6, 10, 0, 7, 5.

terrell

February 20th, 2012
4:01 pm

ESPN always give the Hawks Doris Burke. smh

terrell

February 20th, 2012
4:04 pm

We need a coach WAY more than we need a center. Just sayin

Astro Joe

February 20th, 2012
4:07 pm

Good, we get to watch Teague play Rose to a stand-still (like he did in the playoffs) today. Let’s go Hawks! I’m expecting 16+ for Willie today… dude has been en-fuego of late.

O'Brien

February 20th, 2012
4:07 pm

So LD said he looks at matchups. FTPB, Najeh talking about the Blazers game.

There are 48 minutes to be played at the PF position and C position, totaling 96 minutes.

Josh played 41 minutes
Zaza played 28
Ivan played 4

That adds up to 73.

That means the Hawks were trying to get by with perimeter players (mostly Vlad) for 23 minutes at one or both of the big man positions. Not to mention, Josh has the body of a swingman to begin with..

The Hawks were terrible on the boards, so I dont know which matchups LD was looking at.

Big Lou

February 20th, 2012
4:09 pm

Ready for another blowout on national TV?

Big Lou

February 20th, 2012
4:10 pm

Oh crap! They are playing my starting lineup!!! Green, it’s your time to shine! Please make Marvin stay on the bench.

O'Brien

February 20th, 2012
4:10 pm

AJ,

It will be interesting to see how Willie does. Most of his points are usually against bench players (not starters), but being on the floor with JJ should help him, becuase JJ will draw plenty of attention.

soullrenaissance

February 20th, 2012
4:10 pm

Willie Green starting should be a good look. My condolences to Marvin’s family.

Old Man Peabody

February 20th, 2012
4:10 pm

Man, every time I see Teague I think of Bucky from Fat Albert and the gang

O'Brien

February 20th, 2012
4:11 pm

My prediction. Hawks keep it close in the first half, but Bulls go on a 3rd quarter run, and win by double digits.

Let’s go Hawks. Prove me wrong.

Rod from College Park

February 20th, 2012
4:12 pm

“Oh crap! They are playing my starting lineup!!! Green, it’s your time to shine! Please make Marvin stay on the bench.”

Only death stops Marvin from starting. His play is not taken into account.

steve brown

February 20th, 2012
4:13 pm

After 40 years and due to the pain of watching the Hawks I am going back to being a Knicks fan (unless the Dolan’s screw it up again or the Hawk ownership changes or comes back to life). Routing for the Hawks is freakin” Linsanity.

hawkfan

February 20th, 2012
4:14 pm

are we jinxed, rose comes back this game, aldridge came back for portland, then now carmelo will be back for ny when we face them

Astro Joe

February 20th, 2012
4:14 pm

OB, Willie has finished a few games of late (including Phoenix) and played against the starters. Plus, he has started previously in his career. Think about it this way, while playing with Joe, Teague and Josh… wil anyone pay attention to him?

Big Lou

February 20th, 2012
4:15 pm

That’s why Green > Marvin. You’re welcome.

soullrenaissance

February 20th, 2012
4:15 pm

mean Willie GREEN!

TMACfan

February 20th, 2012
4:15 pm

TMAC drop 20 to shut the coach up

Big Lou

February 20th, 2012
4:16 pm

I think LD read my posts. Finally!

hawkfan

February 20th, 2012
4:16 pm

maybe willie green can take over marvin’s starting position like teague did hinrich

terrell

February 20th, 2012
4:17 pm

Go Willie. Keep Marvin on the bench!

soullrenaissance

February 20th, 2012
4:18 pm

great ball movement by Joe to Smith.

MattP

February 20th, 2012
4:20 pm

So much for a good start, we are getting dominated on rebounds again.

Big Lou

February 20th, 2012
4:20 pm

I hate Josh.

smh

February 20th, 2012
4:20 pm

and the game is over..teague SUCKS!

Old Man Peabody

February 20th, 2012
4:21 pm

What’s up with Teague and finishing at the rim.

smh

February 20th, 2012
4:21 pm

teague and joe sucks at that

Lon Stotts

February 20th, 2012
4:21 pm

Josh had the whole freaking left side of the court to drive and he takes a 20 footer? And I’m surprised by it???

TMACfan

February 20th, 2012
4:22 pm

JaeEvolution

February 20th, 2012
4:22 pm

I’ll never understand Josh Smith’s love for the jumper, like Lon said the WHOLE left side was vacated he would’ve easily got fouled on a drive but took a shot 1 step inside the 3 pt line…wow.

terrell

February 20th, 2012
4:23 pm

Here comes the jumpers.