Atlanta Hawks game thread: Hawks start defensive minded against Heat; T.I. in the building (updated)

Vivlamore reporting.

Updates: Dywane Wade will not play for the Heat. The guard missed the team’s morning shoot-around with a cold. He stayed at the team hotel for the game to be rested, according to Heat coach Eric Spoelstra. Hawks coach Larry Drew said he briefly considered changing his starting lineup but decided to stay with the same five as originally planned. Drew declined to comment before the game when asked his reaction to the Lakers firing of coach Mike Brown. “If you wouldn’t mind, I would rather not comment on that,” Drew said.

The Hawks will go with a smaller, defensive-minded lineup tonight against the Heat. The will start Jeff Teague and Kyle Korver at guard, DeShawn Stevenson and Josh Smith at forward and Al Horford at center (as I first tweeted this morning).

“I like the matchups,” Hawks coach Larry Drew said. “I like the speed that it does give us. With DeShawn in the lineup it gives us a defensive presence. I think that is really important particularly at the beginning of the game. Miami is a very good transition team. They have guys who can really play one-on-one and off the dribble and he gives us a little stability in that area.”

* Smith, for one, is really looking forward to the challenge of playing the defending NBA champions.

“I do, I do. I definitely do,” Smith said when I asked if he looks forward to such a challenge. “Playing against the world champions, they have a gold medal on their team, it is a challenge that I embrace.”

* Although the Hawks will start with a smaller lineup, Heat coach Eric Spoelstra said he expects to see a bigger lineup and different defensive schemes throughout the game.

“That’s the versatility that they have shown,” Spoelstra said. “They’ll use both lineups. They do a lot of different things defensively, some switching, a little bit of zone. We expect them to try to pound us in the paint. That is what this is all about … whose game will get whose game. We know what our identity is and if we are not imposing our will stronger than they are imposing their game, we will get pounded in the paint. But if we are quick to the ball and we are quick to the glass and we are quick to our spots, we can also pose a lot of problems as well.”

* Drew said his team can’t play fast enough. In fact, the more up-tempo the better.

“This team is built to play fast,” Drew said. “My biggest concern is if we don’t try to play fast. We came out against Indiana our last game and we didn’t play an up-tempo game. I think when we only had two fast break points at halftime. We just can’t play like that. We have to come out and open the floor and get up and down the floor. We have done a good job with (limiting) the turnovers (playing fast).”

* The Hawks are second in the NBA with 10.67 steals per game. Teague leads the way with 2.67 steals per game.

* The Heat will start a lineup of Mario Chambers and Dwyane Wade at guard, LeBron James and Shane Battier at forward and Chris Bosh at center.

James said he is not concerned about what style the Hawks will play although both teams like to play up-tempo and have plenty of 3-point shooters.

“We aren’t similar,” James said. “We don’t play like the Hawks. They Hawks don’t play like us. We are two different teams. We just want to come out and play our game.”

* Center Johan Petro will be the Hawks inactive player.

* Grammy winner and Atlanta native T.I. won’t only be at Philips Arena tonight, he’ll serve as color commentator for the first half of the SportSouth broadcast. T.I. will work with Bob Rathbun and former Hawks player Duane Ferrell. T.I. and Ferrell will be filling in for Dominique Wilkins, who is out of town.

* The Hawks are expecting a sellout crowd tonight.

- Chris Vivlamore

478 comments Add your comment

paian

November 9th, 2012
4:05 pm

C.Viv do you know if the hawks are going to sign another back up big?

Chris Vivlamore

November 9th, 2012
4:07 pm

paian: My best answer would be not at this point.

Grandad

November 9th, 2012
4:08 pm

To Buddy G and others:

Yes, DFerry left Cleveland on principle;
however, this does not mean he wishes to hire Mike Brown.
He may very well hire Mike Brown,
although I do not see the logic.

He stood behind his coach in Cleveland;
to oppose a player being the “man in charge”.
Again, it was a matter of principle.

I do not think it was an endorsement of Mike Brown.

I think DFerry wishes to put *his own stamp*
on this club [our Hawks].
I don`t figure he`ll be looking at retreads.

My guess:
DFerry brings a new name to the game.

High-sider

November 9th, 2012
4:15 pm

@Rod from College Park

Rod from College Park
November 9th, 2012
1:05 pm [FTPB]

CP3 and Jamal Crawford = Best backcourt in the NBA.
————————————————————————————————–

Even better than Joe Johnson and Deron Williams [of the Nets] and [a heathly] Steve Nash and Kobe Bryant [of the Lakers]? Now, you know the critics/naysayers/detractors/haters on this [Hawks] blog will write that you’re demonstrating more than your fair share of “hubris” by making that [above] assertion.

Rod from College Park

November 9th, 2012
4:23 pm

High-sider,

I think they are better than Joe and Derron. Kobe and Nash, not sure we will see. I watched them last night and the night before, and having CP3 and Jamal closing out games causes all kinds of matchup problems for other teams. You can’t stay in from of either guy, can’t keep either guy from breaking you down off the dribble, both can handle the rock of the pick and roll at a high level, and if the big jumps out of the pick and roll to guard them, you have Jordan and Griffin going to the basket for the alley oop. Looks like a perfect set up. Willie Green looks good out there too.

Rod from College Park

November 9th, 2012
4:26 pm

My opinion is that Phil will be back to coach the Lakers. Heard him say on HBO a couple of months back that he would consider coming out of retirement to coach Dwight in Orlando. To have Nash, Kobe and Dwight will be too much for him to pass up.

DS

November 9th, 2012
4:33 pm

I hope you’re wrong Rod. I stll have some hope that Dwight is unhappy at he end of the season and decides to come join Smoove in Atlanta. If they hire Phil Jackson…that’s a wrap, Lakers would win the next 3 championships.

Sautee

November 9th, 2012
4:35 pm

Stan van Gundy, and now Mike Brown. Is Dwight the new coach killer?

Rod from College Park

November 9th, 2012
4:43 pm

“Stan van Gundy, and now Mike Brown. Is Dwight the new coach killer?”

Kobe got Mike Brown fired. I think he dealt with it last year, but will not put up with it this year. He already made some statement about he is too old to play childesh games.

Disgusted

November 9th, 2012
4:44 pm

Mike Brown being fired????

Not fair but like Van Gundy, that is life in the NBA.

Just Joe

November 9th, 2012
4:45 pm

Sounds like the King was a little miffed about being compared to the lowly Hawks.

Interesting how Spoelstra says that the Heat will get “pounded in the paint” if they don’t impose their game. My perception of the Hawks is that they can’t “pound” anyone in the paint under any circumstances.

Disgusted

November 9th, 2012
4:46 pm

Kobe = Great player, not a good guy.

He really is jerky, calling out Laker fans. Its not something you do, but he did it.

MJ a better person than Kobe could ever hope to be.

MsDee

November 9th, 2012
4:52 pm

OH NOOO, This statement sounds scary!!

” Smith, for one, is really looking forward to the challenge of playing the defending NBA champions.

“I do, I do. I definitely do,” Smith said when I asked if he looks forward to such a challenge. “Playing against the world champions, they have a gold medal on their team, it is a challenge that I embrace.”

Josh will definitely try to do MORE than his butt needs to be doing just so he can TRY and out shine LeBron and friends..dang! I knew it wouldnt last long!!

Rod from College Park

November 9th, 2012
4:52 pm

paian

November 9th, 2012
4:53 pm

actually kobe was sticking up for mike brown some reporter wrote a story on covering that yesterday before the firing on espn

Rod from College Park

November 9th, 2012
4:55 pm

Stars and owners run the NBA. Cross either one of them and you will be lloking for another job. Part of the reason we have not won anything in Atlanta. We have not had a star since Nique, and ownership, no comment.

Sam

November 9th, 2012
4:56 pm

I guess Drew must have been reading my blog posting from yesterday!

paian

November 9th, 2012
4:58 pm

how did he read your blog posting pls tell us or are you just delusional?

Sam

November 9th, 2012
5:01 pm

By the way, why is this T I rapper guy calling the game? Was Steve “Snapper” Jones not just hanging around the building and available? Heck, I’d prefer to hear Jerome Jeronovich or Ron Gant instead of the rapper.

Hawks Blog Legend Worldwide Clyde

November 9th, 2012
5:06 pm

I’m sorry but how T.I go from convicted felon to color commentary on television. He must be connected to someone very powerful. I’m just saying….

Hawks have to run tonight. After Lebon gets his highlight dunks push the ball back up the floor like nothing happened.

Petro getting paid 3 mill to sit on the bench inactive. Must Be Nice *Lyfe Jennings Voice*

Slimjr

November 9th, 2012
5:09 pm

Sautee

November 9th, 2012
4:35 pm

“Stan van Gundy, and now Mike Brown. Is Dwight the new coach killer?”

Gundy+Brown= Round peg/ Square Hole

Slimjr

November 9th, 2012
5:14 pm

Woody’s blueprint to dismantle the Heat [Knicks defeat Miami on opening night by 20]!!!!!!

Knicks forced 21 turnover’s!

Knicks out rebounded the Heat by 13!

Then of course Woody sealed the deal by raining 3 balls!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

keith

November 9th, 2012
5:15 pm

Wow! Thought that it would happen, but not so soon. Mike Brown was a horrible hire in the 1st place.

keith

November 9th, 2012
5:17 pm

Same thing in Atlanta. Larry drew can “guide the ship.” We need a “ship builder.”

Slimjr

November 9th, 2012
5:19 pm

Brian Shaw should of been the Head coach for the Lakers, They’d be 5-0 right about now!

Brian was Phil Jackson’s right hand man… Leave Phil retired!

Give Mr. Shaw a shot!

e-dub

November 9th, 2012
5:25 pm

Hating on t.i. i see………um thats not corporate at all……

Slimjr

November 9th, 2012
5:29 pm

Mr. Shaw has [Mastered] the “Triangle Offense”..He learned from the Best!

Rod from College Park

November 9th, 2012
5:29 pm

If they are trying to save a little money B. Shaw will be the hire, if money is not the issue, then Phil will return.

Slimjr

November 9th, 2012
5:34 pm

Co-sign Rod from College Park..

Jesse

November 9th, 2012
5:34 pm

Korver on James? That’s defensive minded?

keith

November 9th, 2012
5:38 pm

Mike Brown was horrible at public relations, much like coach Drew. Coach Drew needs a Public Relations team moving forward.

keith

November 9th, 2012
5:41 pm

Line-up tonight should be Horford on Bosh
Smith on James
Ivan
DeShawn Stevenson
Devin Harris

Luke Cage

November 9th, 2012
5:43 pm

SWEET CHRISTMAS!!!

terrell

November 9th, 2012
5:46 pm

Korver’s not a starter. Oh well.

Luke Cage

November 9th, 2012
5:49 pm

Mike Brown still gets his 18mil, no tears for ya bruh.

Ghost Of Woody

November 9th, 2012
5:49 pm

* Drew said his team can’t play fast enough. In fact, the more up-tempo the better.

“This team is built to play fast,” Drew said. “My biggest concern is if we don’t try to play fast. We came out against Indiana our last game and we didn’t play an up-tempo game. I think when we only had two fast break points at halftime. We just can’t play like that. We have to come out and open the floor and get up and down the floor. We have done a good job with (limiting) the turnovers (playing fast).”

Drew I am not understanding why Korver is starting. I thought the two guard lineup with speedy guards Teague and Harris would make us uptempo. Why is Harris not starting? We all know Teague by himself can not set the tempo for this team.

Luke Cage

November 9th, 2012
5:52 pm

Can’t start Korver, heat will go straight at him immediately, start Devin

keith

November 9th, 2012
6:00 pm

I heard Chris Brussard of ESPN say that one of his sources told him that the Lakers were looking at a Pau Gasol to Atlanta for Josh Smith and Kyle korver?

keith

November 9th, 2012
6:04 pm

I love the idea of trading Josh now and bringing in an NBA allstar.

PG-Jeff Teague
SG-Lou Williams
SF-Ivan Johnson
PF-Al Horford
C-Pau Gasol

This team will definitely get out of the 2nd round of the playoffs.

jhan

November 9th, 2012
6:06 pm

Haven’t been impressed with Devin so far. Hopefully he gets better.

keith

November 9th, 2012
6:10 pm

Lou Williams-Al Horford- and Pau Gasol will form the next Big Three?

sameba

November 9th, 2012
6:17 pm

No they will not.

sameba

November 9th, 2012
6:19 pm

I do think one should trade with Lakers at all!!

Chris Vivlamore

November 9th, 2012
6:19 pm

Jesse: Stevenson on James.

sameba

November 9th, 2012
6:22 pm

Correction:

“I do not think…”

NORRIS CHUCK

November 9th, 2012
6:26 pm

Shams Charania: After a strong workout, the #Hawks have yet to indicate Kyrylo Fesenko if they’ll sign him, but the big man tells me ATL remain an option. Twitter @ShamsCharania

sameba

November 9th, 2012
6:27 pm

This is not a good lineup. Korver can guard neither Wade nor LBJ. Korver was always coming off the bench and that should not be changed. If we want him to be successful with Hawks.

NORRIS CHUCK

November 9th, 2012
6:32 pm

Listening to Magic on ESPN talking about its still a long season and for fans to be patient is killing me.

They are only 5 games into the season and DOWN GOES BROWN! Seems to me he was a scapegoat.

Has anyone seen the Lakers bench??? Thats not Browns fault, thats management. They wont win a NBA championship with that bench.

So now all of a sudden everbody is aready bringing Phil Jackson onboard. Hmmm…im wondering if the Lakers havent already been talking to Phil.

keith

November 9th, 2012
6:32 pm

Hopefully Larry will employ a zone defense tonight. We will not stay in the game unless we zone Miami 2/3 of the time.(While James is on the floor).

Old Man Peabody

November 9th, 2012
6:37 pm

I’m expecting Ray Lewis to go for 17 or better tonight. he’ll match whatever Lou puts up tonight.