Atlanta Hawks: Hawks 95, Wizards 92

Washington–The Wizards may be a good team one day. Right now the Hawks have better, smarter, and more experienced players. In the fourth quarter they maintained their poise, controlled the glass and made key shots while waiting for the Wizards to show their age.

  • I’ll say it again: It was a professional effort by a fatigued team that once again began the game like it was cool trying to trade baskets but ended it like it a veteran, self-assured outfit.
  • “I know some guys were tired, some guys were banged up,” Larry Drew said. “We were playing catch up the whole game. We got over the hump in the fourth quarter and that’s a huge, huge win for us. We are quietly starting to turn into one of those teams. We have stretches where we don’t play well, we have stretches that teams have runs on us, but we don’t panic. That’s a sign of a veteran team.”
  • I’m not sure about huge, but the victory does help the Hawks stay on pace for homecourt advantage in the playoffs. They’ll earn it if they finish with a better record than Philly, though Philly would be the higher seed by virtue of a division title. The explanation for this silly system is here below the standings.
  • If you like the ponies, the Wizards were sort of like a talented thoroughbred moving up in class against more accomplished foes, running a strong race but getting wired. Yes, I like the ponies.
  • “Everything is easy when you are up [big], everybody is free-flowing and making plays,” Joe Johnson said. “But down the stretch, when it’s gut-check time, everyone tends to get a little tense and a little tight and the basket is not as big. We knew we had a chance.”
  • The Hawks were going for the tie at the end but the Wizards cut off the play. The ball swung back to Joe, who calmly knocked down a 27-foot 3. Joe scored nine points on four shots in just 5:42 in the fourth quarter.
  • “Joe came in that fourth quarter, it took him a couple trips to get loose again and then he was aggressive and in attack mode,” Drew said. “I guess the rest I gave him in that fourth quarter gave him some good because he hit some big shots.”
  • Drew was able to give his starters a long breather in the fourth quarter because all of the bench guys made positive contributions after none of them except Marvin Williams offered much in the first half. Jeff Teague’s 36 minutes and Josh Smith’s 35 were the highs for the starters, though foul trouble also contributed to Teague’s limited run.
  • “It was that second unit that got us back in it,” Drew said. “I wasn’t 100 percent I wanted to put the guys back in the game when I did, but it worked out pretty good.”
  • Marvin Williams once again looked good coming off the bench in the first half. His nine points on six shots, second to Josh’s 14 points on 10 shots in the first half, prevented the Wizards from really running away with it.
  • Ivan Johnson had five points on two shots and six defensive rebounds in just 18 minutes. He was good against Nene and Kevin Seraphin and even started a fast break and ended it with a nifty pass to Marvin.
  • Willie Green and Vladimir Radmanovic each made key shots during the second-half rally. Vlad Rad also had four offensive rebounds and forced Dunwoody High’s Chris Singleton to miss in the final minute.
  • “Ivan came in and played good defense on Nene,” Josh said. “Vladi hit a big three in the fourth quarter. Marvin, he lifted us offensively. Everybody contributed. That’s what you need in these three-in-a-row stretches.”
  • The minutes are starting to pile up for Josh and it showed. He still was energetic while challenging drives (two blocks and three steals) and had 20 points on 17 shots.
  • Zaza Pachulia seemed to look better as the game went on. He said he didn’t quite have his legs: “I don’t care [about the injury]. It feels good. If I’m out there, I can play.”
  • With Zaza unable to do his usual good work on the boards, Kirk Hinrich’s seven rebounds were important. So was his perimeter defense against John Wall (1 for 10 from the floor).
  • Teague (nine assists) did a very nice job using his penetration to set up teammates.
  • The Wizards coughed up their second big lead in as many games. They seemed to forget about Nene down the stretch as Singleton, Wall and Jordan Crawford took turns jacking up rushed shots. “We played one way up until this trade and now we have to break that,” Randy Wiitman said. “The ball has to go inside more, inside-out.”
  • With the Wizards leading 90-88, Crawford waved off a screen to take Joe one-on-one and missed a rushed jumper. He remains an undisciplined offensive talent.
  • “I already knew that was coming,” Joe said. “Jordan is a great friend of mine. Any advice I can give him I’m always a phone call away. But when we play together it’s trash talking, ‘You can’t guard me.’ That’s just the way it is. I knew it was going to come down like that before the game was over, it just happened to be at a crucial part of the game.”
  • Vlad Rad reported no problems with his back: “But the question is how it will feel tomorrow.”

Michael Cunningham, Hawks beat

135 comments Add your comment

Slimjr

March 24th, 2012
11:19 pm

Slimjr

March 24th, 2012
11:22 pm

lets see how this veteran club handles superior talent over the next 12 games, okay Larry?

viva Real madrid

March 24th, 2012
11:22 pm

Bad bench, bad coach, overrated overpaid franchise player Atlanta Hawks saga of 2012

sly

March 24th, 2012
11:24 pm

High-sider

March 24th, 2012
11:24 pm

viva Real madrid

March 24th, 2012
11:24 pm

Tmac must have been banged up after his 6 minutes last night to not even travel with the team let alone dress. lol. buwahhhhhhhh

Ole Hawks Fan

March 24th, 2012
11:24 pm

He R. Sund, we have no help @ center with Twin and Bif Fat Out Of Shape Dampier but they remain roster while Golden State singed Chris Benson to a 10 day contract. The few minutes I saw of Benson in his first minutes in the NBA, I would take him over Both Benchers, TWIN and Fat, Out Of Shape Dampier. ASG sucks and you(Sund) are a poor excuse for a GM. Both of YOU get outta of The ATL Real Quick. The fan have been crying on this blog to bring Benso Back.

Slimjr

March 24th, 2012
11:25 pm

Vlad hanging around ZaZa too much, missing point blank shots at the rim too? Sheesh….

Grandmaster JeJe (GM)

March 24th, 2012
11:26 pm

High-sider

March 24th, 2012
11:26 pm

Brittney Griner dunks again – this time on the Lady Jackets of Georgia Tech.

Slimjr

March 24th, 2012
11:27 pm

Wake up the General.He’ll whip this franchise into CHAMPIONS! You got a match?

City Of Atlanta Still Recovering From William Tecumseh Sherman

March 24th, 2012
11:27 pm

benson playing tonight?

Grandmaster JeJe (GM)

March 24th, 2012
11:27 pm

“I know some guys were tired, some guys were banged up,” Larry Drew said. “We were playing catch up the whole game. We got over the hump in the fourth quarter and that’s a huge, huge win for us. We are quietly starting to turn into one of those teams. We have stretches where we don’t play well, we have stretches that teams have runs on us, but we don’t panic. That’s a sign of a veteran team.”

Yeah, playing catch-up against the worst teams in the league sure is a sign of progression.

Rufus1

March 24th, 2012
11:28 pm

“We are quietly starting to turn into one of those teams”-LD

That is a strong statement.

“Everything is easy when you are up [big], everybody is free-flowing and making plays,” Joe Johnson said. “But down the stretch, when it’s gut-check time, everyone tends to get a little tense and a little tight and the basket is not as big. We knew we had a chance.”-Joe (AKA..The Closer)

The most he said in 6 years.

Grandmaster JeJe (GM)

March 24th, 2012
11:30 pm

Props to Joe Johnson. His contract may suck, but he is a top 3 SG hands down.

SUND AND ASG: I STILL CANNOT BELIEVE U GUYS DID NOT SIGN ANY BIGS TO HELP OUT. WE ARE BUSY RELYING ON VLAD FREAKING RADMANOVIC AS A BIG

Slimjr

March 24th, 2012
11:31 pm

I feel ya JeJe GM!

This sugar coating for 45 years has got to stop…Its dysfunctional to say the least..45 years of excuses.

If ya cant afford the Hawks get out of the kitchen!

soullrenaissance

March 24th, 2012
11:33 pm

LD’s bald dome – corner pocket.

Slimjr

March 24th, 2012
11:34 pm

‘We are quietly starting to turn into one of those teams”-LD”

Yea betcha that story will change by this time next week…

Grandmaster JeJe (GM)

March 24th, 2012
11:34 pm

Zaza Pachulia seemed to look better as the game went on. He said he didn’t quite have his legs: “I don’t care [about the injury]. It feels good. If I’m out there, I can play.”

Our starting center is busy saying bold things like that, yet we have guys like TMac, Willie, Radmanovic, and Marvin who get mysteriously hurt and miss weeks doing God Knows What

soullrenaissance

March 24th, 2012
11:35 pm

Sund can take his receding hairline with his things too.

Slimjr

March 24th, 2012
11:36 pm

5-7, 4-8 would not surprise anyone but Larry..

viva Real madrid

March 24th, 2012
11:38 pm

Tmac hurt larry drews feelings and hence dude has been relugated to no more plasying time coaching decision status

Slimjr

March 24th, 2012
11:40 pm

Naw, Coach Larry is saving him for the PLAYOFF’s.. PLAYOFFS?Yup.

Grandmaster JeJe (GM)

March 24th, 2012
11:41 pm

Thx Slimjr LOL. You are not an ANAL-MINDED MORON in my books

Grandmaster JeJe (GM)

March 24th, 2012
11:42 pm

T-Mac prob went out in the ATL tonite

Grandmaster JeJe (GM)

March 24th, 2012
11:48 pm

How is Vlad’s back hurting? All he does is shoot 3s and NOT play defense

rashweed rulez

March 24th, 2012
11:54 pm

Drew has his scapegoats every season and tmac has been nominated to be his this season.

rashweed rulez

March 24th, 2012
11:55 pm

Should have waived Tmac and Dampier, signed benson and Rasul Butler

Slimjr

March 24th, 2012
11:55 pm

Missing layups will tweak your back…….lol

Sutton's Fro

March 24th, 2012
11:57 pm

MC, I’m not sure why you said the Hawks can get home court by passing Philly. They already have a better record than the Sixers, but the Sixers lead their division. The way I read it, the seeding rules have the 3 division winners and the winningest non-division champ getting the top 4 seeds, and home court for the 1st round. They also state that the top 4 would be seeded by regular season record.

Wouldn’t the Hawks have to pass Orlando and take the 3 seed?

Sutton's Fro

March 25th, 2012
12:01 am

JeJe, the Hawks need more ergonomic chairs on the bench so Vlad Rad’s back won’t go out!

And does anyone have Kevin Willis’s cell number? Even at his age, I think he’d do better than any of the so-called bigs the Hawks have…

Grandmaster JeJe (GM)

March 25th, 2012
12:03 am

How was Willie out so freaking long? These guys better be in shape April 26

jlewis

March 25th, 2012
12:08 am

Anyone that has a premium seat can complain….If you dont go to the games and argue about what someone else gets paid, you are a hater, plain and simple.

doc

March 25th, 2012
12:14 am

has anyone looked at hiw the top eight in the west have done against the east and vice versa? they are killing the east. only orlando and the bulls have stood up to the east whereas only the laiers have faltered to about .500. amazed at tye disparity

Blake

March 25th, 2012
12:16 am

I’m so proud of this team…I can’t see straight…they’re still winning games with a decimated roster and a depleted bench and they’re hanging around.They have showed they can take a punch and they still come out swinging.Love the way J smoove has stepped up His game.He just wants It and He’s proving It.Larry Drew Is doing a fantastic Job with this hurt bunch.My hats off to ya Hawks…your gonna be a dangerous bunch In the playoffs once we get all the hurting bodies back.GO HAWKS!!!!!!!!

Grandmaster JeJe (GM)

March 25th, 2012
12:19 am

doc
March 25th, 2012
12:14 am

has anyone looked at hiw the top eight in the west have done against the east and vice versa? they are killing the east. only orlando and the bulls have stood up to the east whereas only the laiers have faltered to about .500. amazed at tye disparity

LinkReport this comment

Not even google translator can fix this one…wow.

MO

March 25th, 2012
12:19 am

I never understood why the brass let Benson go.

Rusty

March 25th, 2012
12:20 am

It’s going to be very hard to be a hawk fan next year with LD still being the coach. I really feel sorry forvTMac, was really looking forward to him playing for the hawks.

doc

March 25th, 2012
12:36 am

jeje:

3 words with three letters to change but ill help you out. some folks can read misplaced ketters without losing content or context. guess you are not one of them. :-)

has anyone looked at how the top eight in the west have done against the east and vice versa? they are killing the wast. only orlando and the bulls have stood up to the east whereas only the lakers have faltered to about .500. amazed at the disparity.

anyway the message is the west kills east big time head to head and i hate typing and iphone makes it worse. :-)

doc

March 25th, 2012
12:38 am

too funny even the corrections end up with typos. this aint for a grade.

jlewis

March 25th, 2012
12:39 am

Tmac is finished, he cant play and he still wants elite minutes…I think locker room cancer is about to grow, he’s been that everywhere he’s been.

theight

March 25th, 2012
12:43 am

I really think iverson would have been a better signing

doc

March 25th, 2012
1:04 am

spurs suck can only beat the hornets by three. what is wrong with them? for that matter bulls are worse as they can only beat the raptors by one.

Big Lou

March 25th, 2012
1:51 am

Department of Unintentional Irony should do a post about doc(his name), and how it doesn’t correspond with his typing. I mean, I see better grammar, spelling, and punctuation from Saints fans(trolls).

tyger

March 25th, 2012
2:20 am

Stop drooling… its the Wizards!!!

And we barely win, just barely…

Now, comes the Jazz…convenient excuses abound…

We’re tired, long road trip, back to back to back, injuries galore….

Blah, blah, blah, blah….how many folks work 5 days a week?

Back to back to back to back to back….shut up and play!

ZaZa needs to be captain and the featured player…moreover,

Horford needs to come off the bench when he comes back!

You Should Stop Posting

March 25th, 2012
2:34 am

tyger
March 25th, 2012
2:20 am

ZaZa needs to be captain and the featured player…moreover

___________________________________________________________________________________

A guy who routinely misses layups should be the featured player and a captain? Really?

Grandad

March 25th, 2012
2:50 am

I reallty think the chemistry on this team is growing
due to LD happening upon the right combination
of starters.
Inserting Kirk into the starting lineup has done several things;
not the least of which, took the ‘`pressure`’ off Marv as a starter.
Additionally; kirk gives Teaguer a reliable change of pace guard
to offset Jeff`s lack of natural leadership.
Regardless of the many on this blog who would disagree,
Kirk is a fine defender and getting better as he has
played himself into much better condition as the season has progressed.

John Wooden:
‘`it`s not your best five players; it`s your best five that play together.`’

Hawks Fan Down UNder

March 25th, 2012
3:01 am

Meh, a huge win against the….Wizards? Hardly. Those last 5 minutes the Wizards looked useless. Just dumb jump shot after dumb jump shot. Couldn’t believe how bad and selfish those guards are. Dont know anything about Randy Whittman but he better put a rocket under Wall and Crawford if they are ever goin to succeed.

….and meanwhile in the ATL we still have LD……super-coach……

Buddy Grizzard

March 25th, 2012
3:49 am

“Tmac hurt larry drews feelings and hence dude has been relugated to no more plasying time coaching decision status.”

We will know that is true if he doesn’t play much tonight.

Buddy Grizzard

March 25th, 2012
3:51 am

“Hawks need more ergonomic chairs on the bench so Vlad Rad’s back won’t go out!”

Vlad needs that throne Phil Jackson was sitting on last year.