Atlanta Hawks: Hawks 109, Magic 81

Vivlamore reporting from Orlando. Here is my game story from the Hawks’ 109-81 win over the Magic.

ORLANDO — The Magic can’t beat the Hawks with Dwight Howard.

Without the All-Star center, it’s just plain ugly.

The Hawks swept the season series from the Magic with a 109-81 drubbing Friday night at the Amway Center. It was a key Eastern Conference victory for the Hawks, who are a win away from clinching their fifth consecutive playoff berth.

The Hawks (35-24) took control of the fifth seed in the conference. They remain two games behind the Pacers for the third spot. Hosting a first-round series remains a real possibility.

The Hawks have seven regular-season games to play, six at home.

The Magic (34-25) have lost all three games to the Hawks this season. The first two losses, both in February, came by a combined five points. Without Howard, they never were in the game.

The Hawks, winners of nine of their past 13 games, were led by Jannero Pargo with 17 points off the bench. In a well-rounded scoring effort, Joe Johnson, Josh Smith and Marvin Williams each had 16 points. Tracy McGrady and Jerry Stackhouse scored 11 points each, and Kirk Hinrich and Zaza Pachulia added eight apiece. It was a season-high for Stackhouse.

The Hawks finished with 25 assists.

“We did a good job of running the offense, and guys made the extra passes,” Pargo said. “I got some good looks, got in a rhythm and knocked them down tonight.”

Howard missed the game because of back spasms and visited a specialist in Los Angeles on Friday for a second opinion. It was the third consecutive game, and fifth of the past seven, the All-Star has missed with the injury. He was scheduled to return from California on Friday.

Magic coach Stan Van Gundy said Howard experienced pain following practice Thursday and wasn’t optimistic he will play at Cleveland on Sunday or versus Philadelphia on Monday. Howard has a herniated disk.

The Hawks also were short-handed. They were without guard Willie Green, who left the team Friday afternoon to be with his wife for the birth of a child, and forward Ivan Johnson, who was sent back to Atlanta for disciplinary reasons. The Hawks lost Pachulia to a left foot injury near the end of the first half. X-rays were negative, but he did not return. Pachulia said following the game that his foot hurt and he was unsure if he would miss any games.

“The fact that we didn’t come in and take this team lightly,” said Hawks coach Larry Drew of what he was most happy about.

“We’ve been in situations this year where key players have been out for the opposition, and we have not played with energy and intensity. I thought tonight we did that from start to finish. We stayed the course of what we wanted to do from a game-plan standpoint.”

There was no letdown Friday.

The Hawks stormed to a 20-point halftime lead, 62-42, ending the second quarter on a 21-5 run. Johnson scored 11 points and Smith scored 10, but the Hawks got points from eight different players.

The Hawks never trailed in the game. Smith scored the game’s first four points, both with Glen Davis trying to guard him.

The Hawks built a 13-point lead after the first quarter by shooting 75 percent (15-for-20) from the field. They made one more 3-pointer (three) in the first quarter than they did in Wednesday’s loss to the Celtics (2).

“The first two plays of the game they ran a play for me and Joe,” Smith said. “If it works the first time we tend to try to milk it until we miss a shot or they make a stop. I was trying to be aggressive and use my quickness. That’s what I was able to do early on to get myself going.”

The lead was 25 by the end of the third quarter. The Hawks made five 3-pointers in the quarter, including three consecutive by Pargo. The lead hit 30 points early in the fourth quarter when Vladimir Radmanovic made a 3-pointer, the seventh Hawk to make one.

The Hawks are 33-5 when scoring 90 or more points.

63 comments Add your comment

Najeh Davenpoop

April 13th, 2012
9:59 pm

The Vivlamore losing streak is finally broken!

Najeh Davenpoop

April 13th, 2012
10:22 pm

Knicks are now the 7 seed. A Knicks-Heat first round matchup would be entertaining.


April 13th, 2012
10:28 pm

Get well soon Zaza. Gonna need you to knock someone the …. out. lol


April 13th, 2012
10:30 pm

Jarrod N Rudolph ‏ @JRudolphSports Reply Retweet Favorite · Open
Sources have told me that Dwight Howard has been diagnosed with a herniated disc in his lower back. He has been advised to rest for 10-15 days

Orlando might be in a free fall. Good night for Hawks fans minus Pacers winning. Celts and Orlando lose


April 13th, 2012
10:33 pm

D12 is done! Out indefinitely!

Herniated disk….Kaput!


April 13th, 2012
10:36 pm

Woodson is 9-0 @ home! Crazy…

13-4…momentum is good going into the playoffs..Amare’ should be back within 2 weeks…


April 13th, 2012
10:37 pm


Play him more consistently and he will produce.


April 13th, 2012
10:38 pm

SVG, cant wait to catch a cab out of Orlando!


April 13th, 2012
10:40 pm

Miami may end up playing Orlando…


April 13th, 2012
10:51 pm

Two good games inarow for Tracy McGrady when he has been given a fair shot. So much for the argument his body cant handle it. LD dosent want to swallow his pride but at some point he’ll have to because tmac in the playoffs will be an asset.


April 13th, 2012
10:58 pm

Karma is a Biatch!

A herniated disc is serious business! I imagine it’s @ the lumbar level L5-S1. 5th lumbar that transitions onto the sacrum. Ouch! I’ve been there done that.

Amare has a buldge, if he’s not careful his will herniate also. Dwight is probably down for the seasn and post season. The NBA rigors is no joke, this brutal schedule is fueled by greed and the human body can only do so much.


April 13th, 2012
11:04 pm

JT has about half the minutes of the rest of the starters.Is he back in LD’s doghouse. I know he had 4 fouls but what difference should this have made.


April 13th, 2012
11:09 pm


I have a question for you. Amare may be back middle of next week but what is the difference between what Baron Davis had and what Dwight Howard now has?It took Davis until end of January before he played?


April 13th, 2012
11:13 pm

I dont want to sound cynical but do you think Dwight is faking this injury to sabatoge his team and complete the dismissal of Stan Van Gundy?

Big Lou

April 13th, 2012
11:14 pm


It makes a huge difference. I would rather Teague sit out and rest then be out there for no reason and get injured. Come on, man!


April 13th, 2012
11:17 pm

Deron Williams on facing Boston, Heat and Knicks at Prudential Center the next five days: “We have three road games in a row coming up.”

Funny I feel the same way when those teams visits the Hawks arena


April 13th, 2012
11:19 pm

That #3 seed is a lock for the Hawks, IF zaza is ok. Aye Sund! Where is your big man now? You are a certifiable, bonafide nut job and an arrogant anal minded FOOL!

Aye Drew! Swallow that pride and LEAVE IVAN ALONE! Stop FKG with him, you know that bow ain’t right! Stop pushing his buttons, back off and play Ivan, zaza is hurt!!!

Just WIN baby! By any means necessary, your obstacles are dropping like flies and the window of opportunity is closing fast!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Breaking News!!!

Aye Drew! Your are not Dr. Drew – You’re Coach Drew! So, stop mind f_ckg your roster!!!!!!!!!!!!


April 13th, 2012
11:20 pm

Biglou I hope that is what it is.strange that the rest of the first team played almost double the min of JT. Why didn’t he rest JJ,KH or JS more. I don’t trust LD.

Big Lou

April 13th, 2012
11:22 pm

With the schedule that is left(and Orlando’s decline), it most likely will be Knicks versus the Pacers/Hawks/Boston.

They have four games versus playoff teams.
Hawks have five.
Boston has four.
Pacers have three.

It’s going to be a tight race. It could go either way.

I’m hoping for Boston versus Knicks/Pacers versus Hawks.

Big Lou

April 13th, 2012
11:25 pm

“Biglou I hope that is what it is.strange that the rest of the first team played almost double the min of JT. Why didn’t he rest JJ,KH or JS more. I don’t trust LD.”

They didn’t have four fouls…

LD usually is a d!ck towards Teague, but not tonight.


April 13th, 2012
11:26 pm

good to see the hawks take care of business. the magic have gotten worse every year since their most recent finals appearance and they have a bonafide superstar player. I wonder what’s worse for a fan, dealing with that kind of decline or dealing with a team that can’t seem to get over the hump.


April 13th, 2012
11:36 pm

Now c`mon Rusty !

Two or three folks pat you on the back yesterday,
and here you go again.

‘`JT back in LD`s doghouse`’ [paraphrase]

Nonsense !

What happened ?
Once upon a time:
You asked LD for an autograph & he spit on your
Belvedere Brown Lizards ?


April 13th, 2012
11:50 pm


I do not think your one bit cynical.

‘`Dwight … faking … injury`’

I`m glad you brought it forth.

I`m a bit curious & maybe I`m naive;
Why did he fly cross sountry to get it checked ?

No docs in Fla ?

That seemed odd to me.
Maybe I don`t relate to how rich folk do thangs.


April 13th, 2012
11:56 pm

Grandad did he pat you on your azz.


April 13th, 2012
11:59 pm

Grandad I guess you think it’sOK how he treated Jt,JC2 & TMac. I would like to know what really happened with Ivan.

Grandmaster JeJe (GM)

April 14th, 2012
12:03 am

Tmac said postgame it has been hard adjusting to not starting.

I thought he came off bench on DET too

Grandmaster JeJe (GM)

April 14th, 2012
12:20 am

Pargo TMac Stack Twin Dampier.

Oldest lineup ever?


April 14th, 2012
12:34 am


Yes that is why I find it strange and supposedly he tweeted that he was at a party either last night or the day before. Why would you travel to another coast if u have a bad back?


April 14th, 2012
12:35 am

grandad people ho to different docs for the same reason elbows are fixed in columbus ga or anyone that wants to pitch again. you know because the best knee surgeon is in vail co and folks go to vail to get knees oppperated on or an aldrich goes to the hip doctor in vail that literally chiseled a guys hip to change the angle and repaired his labrum to cure his chronic back and groin problem to go on to star this year for the rangers.

geez,if you can you go to the absolute best. surgeons can be magicians or butchers. so you go where you and your agent think there is the most cred. cynicism is stupid here guys when a clean bill of health guarantees a HUGE contract, not an injury with pitential to be chronic that might diminish his value on the open market.

if your body was worth 100 mil you would take the next flight to l a if that was where the best spine surgeon lives. tom brady didnt go to mass general but to california for his knee.

analogy, plenty of pretty women in atl but clyde goes to rio to get his pipes cleaned. heh heh

these guys take their bodies a lot more seriously than us couch potatoes and i cant blame them. whoever says he is faking it is one who fajes it through his own life.p


April 14th, 2012
12:39 am

where are the resident cynics?


April 14th, 2012
1:10 am


Like I said;
I`m a bit naive about such.

I have lost any respect for Dwight that I may or may not have had.

I figured yourself or Mary Ellen would set me straight.


April 14th, 2012
1:15 am


The level of the disc injury: there are five lumbar bones and disc (spacers/cushions/shock absorbers) in the lumbar spine, (below the rib cage and above the SI (sacro – iliac) joints.

The lowest lumbar, (#5 vertebrae) bears the weight of every thing above it. Therefore, is the most likely to:

Rupture (a hole in the wall)

Herniate (the nuclear material has come thru the wall, and may be pushing into the spinal cord, (worst) or, may be blocking the nerve root exiting the canal, or not)

Prolapse (slipped)
Dessicate (disappear)

Each of those conditions can go from mild to moderate to severe in each case. Without an MRI, I can not differentiate
from Baron to Amare to Dwight.

Respectively I listed the players in order of who has the most number of reoccuring episodes.

Baron has been battling for the last 4 – 5 years, with the most episodes. He may have multiple levels from L1, L2, L3, L4 to L5 – IDK. He seems to be popping disc like a balloon party.

IDK how many episodes Amare has had, I hear his disc is bolging, (swollen). Decompression/Traction therapy can help to reabsorb the disc and suck it back into it’s vaccum.

Dwight, sounds the worst of all, they’re saying herniated. That’s like a blow out of a tire on your car, where the hole is in the side wall. Get a new tire, man. Replace that one, no pluggs or patches can fix that. I just don’t know the exact levels, nor severity, not the specific location of the herniation for Dwight, (posterior – into the canal and how far into the thecal cord sack, or medial (the sides), or posterio – lateral/medial? (The nerve root exit doors) or, if it’s bilateral or unilateral for IVF encroachment) meaning, is it completely pinching of the nerve roots that travel out to the cells, tissues, organs, mucsles.

Dwight may be a surgical candidate at some point in the future, to go in remove debris and clean that up, like what Marvin did.

Briggs, possibilities galore and all over the place. Serious stuff for all the guys, Dwight being the most remarkable. He can’t fake that on an MRI or CT-Scan.

I hope that wasn’t TMI, I really get into this topic. LOL!


April 14th, 2012
1:17 am


Dwight reminds me of someone that likes the spotlight and wants the privacy when he feels like it and it doesnt work that way for someone with his status. He thinks the Orlando media is tough, he would crumble if he played in NY or LA even if he were to go to the Brooklyn Nets. He wants people to like him, similar to Lebron which is why Lebron didnt go to NY. I dont think he would be able to handle the pressue and instead he went to Miami which is not a big time sports town. Him and Lebron also arent great when it come to pressure down the stretch of a game.

Say what you want about a Kobe or Melo but they like the spotlight and arent afraid to take big shots make or miss.

On a side note, I would love to see Joe Johnson play like he did in Phoenix coming off of screens and let Teague be a facilitator instead of Johnson initiate the offense.


April 14th, 2012
1:28 am

Smitty’s Below The Rim! (Top Ten Plays)

Briggs baby, these dunking donuts can’t dunk forever! These guys better develop a “below the rim” game and work on some fundamental skills, if they want to play longer.

That’s what is so great about Josh developing a reliable jump shot and passing and rebounding while his is still young. Dunking is hard on the joints, you will pay the price sooner or later – but you will pay!

Blake Griffin, better take some notes. He has already had micro-fracture surgery, the low back is the next to go from there. Dwight, probably should have got that money when he was healthy, we are not promised tomorrow. He may not be able to get a Lord’s of London “performance” insurance policy now. Amare’ is working w/o any insurance policy. The franchise as agreed to pay his medicals since, he is their property.

That’s why football players hold out on bad contracts that they out perform on. One bad day and the money is ghost, with those non-guaranteed contracts. Extremely high-risk stuff going on in the NFL. Player BEWARE! PLAY AT YOUR OWN RISK! Get Money!!!!!!!!!!!!


April 14th, 2012
1:30 am


‘`Grandad did he pat you on your azz`’ ?

-response- … I don`t kiss & tell

Rusty … cont.

Jordan Crawford;
not sure to what you are referring ?
* he was a rookie
* he played behind Jamal Crawford (who already came off the bench)
* he wasn`t very good / poor shooter [%] / volume shooter
* could not or would not play defense
* I would not have played him either
______ ______ ______ ______ ______ ______

Coach / Player relationship
neither you nor I know the particulars
______ ______ ______ ______ ______ ______

* kid has a history
* evidently he had a relapse
* [any] coach cannot tolerate certan behaviors
* everyone would call LD soft if he didn`t draw a line
* LD has been tolerent with Ivan & Ivan has responded
* wait & see how this turns out
* in my mind LD has been very good for Ivan
* what other coach gave the young man a chance

Conspiracy Theory:
Hawks management cooked up a way to devalue Ivan
therefore making it easier to re-sign the young man for
the up-coming season … 2013 … ? ? ? … hmmmmm

Sund = GM of the Year !



April 14th, 2012
1:32 am

Even blind freddy can see LD dosent like TMAC. There was a reason why Tmac called him out after the Bulls game.


April 14th, 2012
1:34 am

Tmac is only 32 so he isnt all that old. He is younger then kobe and only 2 years older then wade.


April 14th, 2012
1:46 am


Amen on all counts. [r e; D.Howard]

-about Joe-
I loved Najeh`s moniker:
Slow Mo Iso-Joe
(or somethin` like that)
Najeh mentioned & I agree;
when Slow Mo Joe gets it in the post;
9 out of 10 times he passes it back out;
and the the other half,
he dribbles it back outside … failing to use his size advantage.

I never was good at `rithmatic.

I do agree that Joe would be fantastic as a catch and shoot specialist.
(both in the post and mis-range)
coming off screens.

Same for Josh.

I would love to see us sign Nash !

Let Teaguer play the [2] on offense;
learn from the master,
Jeff could guard the opponent`s [1].

Nash would play roughly 30 min per
Teaguer could get 10 to 12 min in at the pg pos.
Win / Win


April 14th, 2012
1:48 am

Ms Range is married to Mr Range

Buddy G

April 14th, 2012
3:24 am

“Do you think Dwight is faking this injury to sabatoge his team and complete the dismissal of Stan Van Gundy?”


April 14th, 2012
3:34 am

Grandmaster Jeje- no T mac started at point guard for Detroit last season.

Start T Mac for Kirk!!

Buddy G

April 14th, 2012
3:40 am

“Hawks management cooked up a way to devalue Ivan therefore making it easier to re-sign the young man for the up-coming season ”

Now G-Dad, there hasn’t been a conspiracy theory invented yet that I haven’t bought into. I consulted the Green Men on this one and they advised that Ivan will be a restricted free agent subject to the “Gilbert Arenas Rule” which stipulates that no other team can offer Ivan more than the mid-level exception of $5m per season.

Buddy G

April 14th, 2012
5:31 am

Buddy G

April 14th, 2012
7:22 am


April 14th, 2012
8:12 am

Dwight Howard wants out, no he wants to stay, he wants LA, no he wants NY, no he wants NJ. Karma is a bad dude. Dwight’s star power has disappearred. He is no longer viewed as the missing piece for every team.

What a waste. Maybe he can take his talentZ somewhere.

Grandmaster JeJe (GM)

April 14th, 2012
8:47 am

Now G-Dad, there hasn’t been a conspiracy theory invented yet that I haven’t bought into. I consulted the Green Men on this one and they advised that Ivan will be a restricted free agent subject to the “Gilbert Arenas Rule” which stipulates that no other team can offer Ivan more than the mid-level exception of $5m per season.

ASG doesn’t even bother to use any of the MLE. They will present him some insulting offer and his azz will be outta here


April 14th, 2012
9:40 am

I am enjoying this year but I especially look forward to the Hawks offseason. I can wait to see the during the draft. What brilliant moves will they make? Will they sell the draft pick for a lower pick? Will they draft some unknown player from France averaging 5 points per game? Will they trade for an exception that will never be used.

Oh, the anticipation.


April 14th, 2012
9:49 am

Rev in Tampa

April 14th, 2012
11:16 am

Co-sign Buddy G, 7:22am post.

I was thinking the same thing. Pacers play Bucks & 76ers twice each. Both teams are fighting for their playoff lives. If Miami can put some pressure on Chicago for 1st in the East then maybe the Bulls won’t roll over for the Pacers in their final game of the season. But I don’t see how the Pacers could lose to the Timberwolves or Pistons.

In short, the Hawks have a shot at the three seed, but they have to play at their highest level for rest of the season. At least we won’t have to watch the horrible basketball that we witnessed during the last five or six games of the regular season last season.


April 14th, 2012
11:33 am

durn lost a soliloquy to the blog monster. sorry gdad, gave analogy to what dwight has to what peyton had as a worst case scenario.

it depends on what it bulges against and that is why a certain doc is important because if you wait and it is causing weakness then his big contract is not a sure thing. the mri says bulge and if it is on a spinal root and the muscle if affected then it needs an operation sooner rather than later to keep the nerve root from deteriorating more thereby affecting greater areas of muscle. the docs exam may be the critical determinant right now.

maybe the first doc requested him to go somewhere to make sure the diagnosis was correct? malpractice lawsuits come from less than this and this isnt a frivolous thing nor one where a docs own arrogance should get in the way of getting it right.

nice article on casey buddy. it is kind of like reading about chris paul night after night or the other ones that got away.