Smith on Smith: Steve says ‘travesty’ Josh never All-Star

Vivlamore reporting.

I’m working on a story on why Josh Smith has never been an All-Star despite his career numbers. I don’t want to jump the gun too much but I wanted to share what Steve Smith, the former Hawk (himself an All-Star with the team) and Hawks broadcaster, had to say on the subject when I spoke with him recently.

“I’ve spoke candidly about it, especially last year (when Josh wasn’t named a replacement for Joe Johnson),” Steve Smith said. “There is not another player like that. There are a lot of unique players, like a LeBron James. There are some guys in a class of their own. What he’s done, at power forward, basically with no backup. They have been thin for years trying to find some guys behind Josh and Al. I think Ivan Johnson, Jason Collins have filled in and done a wonderful job. Here is a player who plays at 6-8, undersized, leads the team in block shots. At times, leads them in rebounding. He guards his guy tremendously. He guards a guy who plays out on the perimeter tremendously. Then comes and is one of the best help defenders. I think when you start to look at the success of the Atlanta Hawks and him individually, when you put those two together, to me it’s a travesty that he hasn’t been an All-Star.”

I still have a lot more reporting to do on the subject but look for the story soon.

- Chris Vivlamore

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53 comments Add your comment

High-sider

December 12th, 2012
10:28 am

Harvey Updyke

December 12th, 2012
10:28 am

roll damn tide

High-sider

December 12th, 2012
10:28 am

High-sider

December 12th, 2012
10:28 am

Mike is Back

December 12th, 2012
10:34 am

I agree with SS…for me…last year was the worst snub…he basically carried the team after Al went down.

Nate ArchiBALL

December 12th, 2012
10:34 am

I’ve noticed that Mike Glenn feels the same as Steve about Josh’s game.

Observations:
Jeff Teague. I’ve noticed that teams force Jeff to drive left and with his speed/ quickness he usually gets to the basket but in order to finish he always shoots the ball with his right hand (brings the ball back to the defensive player) a more difficult, lower percentage shot. I would have thought he would have developed his left hand lay-up by now (a la Lou Williams).

Al Horford: Usually when Al receives the ball with his back to the basket teams play him to go to his right for the jump hook. 99% of the time he bangs/bumps the defensive player several times and forces himself in position for his jump hook. In the game against Heat, I finally saw Al keep his dribble and reverse to his left after the first few bumps and go to the basket for an uncontested dunk (that move was available all night long – really all season long). We need to see more of that from Al..

Grandad

December 12th, 2012
10:43 am

*[f t p b]*

Duluth Joe

Yes, I`ve watched most all the games.
I think i`ve missed two, perhaps three.
I generally record the games and “re-watch” as well.
[not the whole game - but specific parts]

Al`s “Jump-Hook” of which I referred, is lethal.

I do not much care for his back to the basket;
pound the ball, back it in, running hook.

His Jump Hook is a quick, catch & shoot,
which utilizes his very average / rather ordinary length.
He is able to use his quickness and frame to create space
directly releasing his shot before the defender can gather.

Perhaps, next game he will put it on display.

hot.trod.87

December 12th, 2012
10:45 am

MsDee

December 12th, 2012
10:46 am

Josh definitely has the numbers to have become an allstar by now but I think the biggest reason has been his FG% over the past years. NO, that shouldnt really matter if he can stack the stat sheet like he often does, but Josh use to just take the most dumbest shots at the wrong time that often kelp coaches from voting for him. And dont thk that other teams and their coaches didnt tell their players how to guard him..they would just leave him wide open so he could take the bad shot and what u ya know, he would just continue to do it!! That’s not smart and coaches just would remember that out of Josh and would often pass on him…

BUT this season may be different!! Josh is playing inside/out now and it has gotten us in the 3rd place so far in the conference!!

ejh

December 12th, 2012
10:56 am

Anyone with any basketball knowledge knows Josh was snubbed last year, but hopefully they will get it right this year. Of the winning teams in the east right now, with Dwight Howard now out west, it would be inexcusable for Josh and Al not to be on the eastern all-star squad. If I was picking today the backcourt would be; Rondo, Irving, Wade, Turner, and maybe D-Will: Frontcourt, Lebron, Melo, Al, Josh, KG, Verajou, Bosh or Tyson Chandler.

Rod from College Park

December 12th, 2012
10:59 am

Most guys who played and understand the game realize how good Josh is. Bloggers that hate just see the bad shots. Most don’t understand all aspects of the game. In relation to the bad shots this is a quote from Magic Johnson concerning Pau Gasol:

“When Gasol was on that (low) block, he averaged 18 points, he shot 53 percent from the field and he still is the best passing big man in the game,” Johnson said Tuesday, shortly after introducing Greinke at a news conference at Dodger Stadium. “But you have him at the free-throw line? That makes no sense. That’s not his game.”

This relates to Josh as well. When you run an offense, and you have Josh standing behind the 3 point line, it makes no sense. If he has slower 4’s trying to guard him, then it might work because he can put the ball on the floor and get by them, but being guarded by 3’s like Battier, and Rudy Gay does not give him an advantage on the perimeter. It forces him to take long jump shots, which is not a strength.

High-sider

December 12th, 2012
11:04 am

If the Hawks can stay in one of the top three [3] seeds in the Eastern Conference by the close of the All-Star voting/selection process while both Josh Smith and Al Horford average 17-18ppg/8-10rpg and 16-17ppg/10-11rpg, respectively, then, [maybe] I would say Josh and Al should have a good to strong chance to make the 2013 Eastern Conference All-Star Team.

[Eastern Conference] Frontcourt players that will or have the potential to make the 2013 All-Star team [other than Josh Smith and Al Horford] include the following [imo]:

Carmelo Anthony – NYK
Tyson Chandler – NYK
LeBron James – MIA
Chris Bosh – MIA
Luol Deng – CHI
Carlos Boozer – CHI
Joakim Noah – CHI
Paul Pierce – BOS
Kevin Garnett – BOS
Brook Lopez- BKN
David West – IND
Anderson Varejao – CLE

Josh [Smith] and Al [Horford] making the 2013 Eastern Conference All-Star Team will NOT be a “cakewalk” by any means [imo].

ejh

December 12th, 2012
11:11 am

In looking at ways to improve the Hawks team here in the short term to be more competitive, they really need to look at adding size at the two and small forward position. One of the Moves I would be on the phone to try and make is a deal for Tyreke Evans of Sacramento. At6′6 he has size and can play either the one or the two spot. therefore when subbing out teague you can slide tyreke to the one and lou williams at the two. you can also move korver back to the small forward position and have tyreke at the two along side Jeff giveing the hawks good size in the backcourt. How about a lineup of 6′6 evans as the pg, 6′7 korver at the sg, 6′9 Josh at sf, 6′10 Horford at pf,This and 6′11 zsa zsa at c. No more undersized team get beat on the glass. Not saying take teague out of the starting lineup, but if LD wanted to go big at times what a lineup. Trade Devin harris and one of those 1st round picks for Tyreke Evans, honeycutt a 6′8 sf and James Johnson a 6′9 power forward. This would also allow for some time maybe for Jenkins also with harris gone and a much more versatile evans who can play pg, sg, and some sf. the money matches, and as a restricted free agent the kings are not bringing back evans.

wordsmithtom

December 12th, 2012
11:11 am

Being guarded by Battier is NOBODY’s strength. Seriously, Josh’s passing makes Horf look a lot better. I can take some of the outside shooting, it’s trying to bring the ball down the court like a point forward that irks me. We have faster guys who can do that, setting him up for stuff he does better. Otherwise, yes he should be an all star.

Grandad

December 12th, 2012
11:37 am

Okay

If we start Josh and Al, plus Teaguer, Korv & Zaza;
but we list Josh as the [4] … then that way
the other team`s [4] man will guard him ….. right ?
So:
If we start Josh and Al, plus Teague, Korv & DSteve;
then call Josh a [3] … then the other team`s [3] man
will have to guard him ….. right ?

I just wanted to get that straight.

`cause the other team`s coach doesn`t get to choose
who guards Josh ….. it`s like little kid`s YMCA ball;
where you line up at the center jump circle,
and everyone guards whomever they happen to be standing beside.

note – because they play the same position.

So Josh is playing the [3] this yr and he can`t score
`cause it`s mandated that all those great defensive players like:
Melo, Rudy Gay, Granger, et al; will be shutting him down.

I get it.

Yes – I am a smart ass !

High-sider

December 12th, 2012
11:42 am

A few years back, Larry Hughes, shortly after playing for the Knicks, said [to paraphrase] that [Coach] Mike D’Antoni “plays mind games” [with some of his players]. When he became the NY Knicks head coach, I remember [Coach] D’Antoni telling Jamal Crawford that he [D'Antoni] loves his [Crawford's] game and that he was going to try to make Crawford an [Eastern Conference] All-Star [guard] but, after just playing 11 games for the Knicks, Crawford was traded to [the] GSW for Al Harrington. Did D’Antoni know Crawford was going to be traded shortly before the 2008 – 2009 NBA regular season started? I don’t know but, maybe, D’Antoni might be getting his “comeuppance” [if he gets fired by Lakers management in the near future].

Coach Mike D’Antoni has [always] been overrated [imo].

http://www.basketball-reference.com/coaches/dantomi01c.html

Larry

December 12th, 2012
11:48 am

Josh > Bosh.

MsDee

December 12th, 2012
11:51 am

Rod from CP,

“This relates to Josh as well. When you run an offense, and you have Josh standing behind the 3 point line, it makes no sense.”

I totally agree with u on that!! And by that statement alone still leads me to the conclusion as to why Josh hasnt been an AllStar yet. He has been in the league under a “newcomer/rookie” head coach Woodson at the time and a “newcomer/rookie” head coach in Drew. Neither one of those coaches knew how to control Josh and put him in the right places on the court where he would be effective BUT that still doesnt give Josh the right to continue making the bad decision in jacking up jumpers at the wrong time!! But all that is now in the past FINALLY!! We now have a Josh that understands his strengths and weakness and is playing a heck of a lot better lately..and to prove it, he finally been recognized as the player of the week!! Happy 4 him!!

Duluth Joe

December 12th, 2012
11:54 am

Granddad, Thank-you for clarification on “jump hook” vs. running hook shots by Al.

Grandad

December 12th, 2012
11:54 am

A [1] is not required to guard the other team`s [1].
same for the {2] through the [5]

Likewise a [1] can post up if the coach chooses to put him there.

Position numbers are only for the purpose of labeling.
Otherwise they are meaningless.

In football there are rules where certain positions must line up
according to their jersey & there must be seven men
on the line of scrimmage etc.

Basketball is different;
players can freely move around.
Players can even “switch” who they are guarding.

My gosh – Josh at the [3] or the [4] who gives a crap.
Al at the [4] or the [5] who gives a crap.
If they [list] Zaza as our pg, who gives a crap.
Zaza is actually listed as a [4] this yr.
Who cares.
It makes no difference.

Quote from last yr:
“I`m just a basketball player”
-Lou Williams-
r e; whether or not he was a [1] or a [2] ?

Jay

December 12th, 2012
11:55 am

Josh Smith has no one to blame but himself. He would make the all-star team if he didn’t jack up so many long jumpers, mouth off to the refs constantly, and take plays off (remember Hubie Brown during the Orlando series?).

Grandad

December 12th, 2012
11:56 am

Duluth Joe

Your quite welcome

Section 303

December 12th, 2012
12:10 pm

If Josh does not make the All Star team this season (assuming he isn’t injured), then the league just does not want him on the team. He should of been selected last season, as well as the season before that. He’s paid his dues. He’s proven to be a high quality player nearly every night. I think this season has been one of (possibly his best) in his career.

Grandad

December 12th, 2012
12:19 pm

If [when] Josh is behind the arc;
it`s on LD !
Josh has posted up more this yr than in recent memory.

Perhaps it`s due to Iso-Monopolize being gone
but nonetheless he stays inside more often. [this yr]

Still it`s on LD;
whenever Josh strays outside, it`s the coach`s job
to rein him in.
*[or any other low % perimeter shooter / regardless of pos]

ed

December 12th, 2012
12:22 pm

idc how many jumpers hes taking a night……look at his stat line for his career in every catergory…….who has put up numbers like that on any team?he does so much for this team it don’t make sense….Every ball player has flaws…hell horford dnt play defense and cries about his size compared to every other center in the league…..Atlanta always getting rid of stars……..its a list of em….thats why they are loserville

I MUS WRITE

December 12th, 2012
12:29 pm

@ Brent from the last blog -Im an equal opprotunist I call it like I see it. When josh is playing well I say hat-but i still point out his deficiences -the shot selection etc, The same goes for AL he is playing well but he needs to work on his post move/game.

Josh hasnt been on an All Star roster because he is still immature and argues calls and non calls to much. Its not because of his skills and talent. Every time he argues a call while the ball is on the opposite end in play -he looks like a big kid -My advice to josh woul be to shut his mouth and channel that enmergy else where

Lakers are the Philadelphia Eagles of the last 2 years. All Star Roster with no cohesion and below average coaching. Kyrie Irving went banannas last night SMH he was the best player on the flor last night and yeah that incudes the Black Mamba…….

I MUS WRITE

December 12th, 2012
12:32 pm

Typos I need Coffee late night

Grandad

December 12th, 2012
12:34 pm

Section 303

You are absotively correct.
espn / Stern choose the All-Star Team
The NBA / Pro Wrestling / entertainment / as Stern sees it
only wishes for the Big names for the pseudo fans.

Only recently he was talking about changing the rules so Dwight could
stay on the floor at the end of games.
Rather than learn to shoot FTs … just change the rules.
Next thing you know we`ll have the designated FT shooter.

Stern / entertainment / pseudo fans / espn
vs
Purists / Competition / level playing field / people will come

I`m sorry, 303, I went on a Stern rant !
I stopped myself before I went completely insane.

Keith

December 12th, 2012
12:36 pm

Magic Johnson on Pau Gasol espn.go.com/nba

When Gasol was on that (low) block, he averaged 18 points, he shot 53 percent from the field and he still is the best passing big man in the game,” Johnson said Tuesday, shortly after introducing Greinke at a news conference at Dodger Stadium. “But you have him at the free-throw line? That makes no sense. That’s not his game.

MsDee

December 12th, 2012
1:13 pm

Both Josh and Horford should make this year’s allstar team cause they both have this team in 3rd place right now!! Coaches everywhere can see that!!

MsDee

December 12th, 2012
1:21 pm

This is off the topic but I was kinda upset how Drew used Jenkins that last game against the Heat. Yes, I know he was waving the white flag with 2:15 min left in the game, but why NOT run some plays for ONLY Jenkins those last 2:15 min of the game..ya know, the same plays he would have ran for Korver??? These are the opportunities you give your young rookies after they perform the way he did in the d-leadue a few days ago. I mean really, to score 50+ points in only 2 games was remarkable!! Allow that player to feel like he mattered those last few min of the game instead of just throwing him out there to just say, “have at it!!” A coach like Coach Pop of the Spurs would have done JUST THAT!! He would have given him plays to see what he could do out there in a real game situation..Coach Pop did it against the Heat’s last time with his 2nd & 3rd units on the court and almost won the game!!

Sherewshevsky

December 12th, 2012
1:25 pm

That quote by Steve Smith is not convincing at all. I could make a much better case than Steve Smith has done here.

MattP

December 12th, 2012
1:27 pm

Wow, after all those DNP Drew is thinking about throwing Tolliver right into the starting lineup. WTH is up with this coach. I give Drew credit for the great defense but everything else he does is horrible. He only draws up good offensive plays a few times a game, the rest of the time it looks like the Hawks are having a jump shot contest.

MattP

December 12th, 2012
1:28 pm

Chris Vivlamore ‏@ajchawks

No definite Hawks lineup yet but Anthony Tolliver could start with DeShawn Stevenson being rested. #ATLHawks

cp

December 12th, 2012
1:58 pm

I hope Ivan gets some minutes tonight. I dont understand all the DNP’s so far this season.

Big Ray

December 12th, 2012
2:11 pm

This relates to Josh as well. When you run an offense, and you have Josh standing behind the 3 point line, it makes no sense. If he has slower 4’s trying to guard him, then it might work because he can put the ball on the floor and get by them, but being guarded by 3’s like Battier, and Rudy Gay does not give him an advantage on the perimeter. It forces him to take long jump shots, which is not a strength.

That’s old news on the blog. Might want to send a memo to Larry Drew’s office.

Big Ray

December 12th, 2012
2:23 pm

Same ol’ arguments. Nobody can say that Josh and Al play well off of each other. Nope…we just GOTTA take sides.

Nevermind the fact that despite their flaws, the two are currently having their best season as a tandem. Anybody miss Joe Johnson terribly? I don’t think the guys in the red jerseys do.

I take that back…when our Guards face a bigger/tougher backcourt, they might miss him.

Big Ray

December 12th, 2012
2:30 pm

Ms. Dee ,

You’re right. First Woody, then Drew.

Consider also that Josh had NO veterans ahead of him for the purpose of mentoring. None. Nobody that could come into the game and play while he was getting schooled on the bench. All of his “training” happened in live play, 35-40 mpg.

Then of course, there was also the matter of PG play in the ATL. Haven’t had a good one in so damn long. Even Teague is just now hitting the tip of the iceberg in what it means to be a floor general.

Joe didn’t want to lead. So it’s not like Josh ever had leaders to deal with (rookie head coaches is as good as it’s gotten, and it just so happens that the 2nd rookie coach worked for the first one…FAIL).

So between that and his own internal flaws, it took Smoove pretty much 8 years to mature. Lot of wasted time.

You can thank the group formerly known as the ASG for the trickle down effect.

ant banks

December 12th, 2012
2:32 pm

josh is NOT an all-star because of the perceptiuon that he has around the league…he snivels with the refs. always whining about a call and he gets this gas face look when he he is called for a foul. as soon as he changes his perception, th4 sooner he will be accepted into the al-star family. ijs
\

Brezzy

December 12th, 2012
2:39 pm

MsDee

December 12th, 2012
2:58 pm

Chris Vivlamore ‏@ajchawks
Error in previous tweet. Hawks coach Larry Drew leaning toward starting Anthony MORROW tonight vs. Magic. Sorry #ATLHawks

MattP

December 12th, 2012
3:08 pm

Thank god it was an error. Viv you scared me.

paian

December 12th, 2012
3:13 pm

thank goodness lol

ryan

December 12th, 2012
3:14 pm

At least we are not the Lakers i am actually glad now we did not get Dwight Howard so many spoiled brats on that team i agree Josh Smith and Al Horford should be All Stars .

Rod from College Park

December 12th, 2012
3:28 pm

“Error in previous tweet. Hawks coach Larry Drew leaning toward starting Anthony MORROW tonight vs. Magic. Sorry #ATLHawks”

Maybe Larry Drew does read the blogs. I mean it is common sense. If Korver played well with the starters, Morrow will as well.

ag

December 12th, 2012
3:30 pm

I think the lineup with Ivan at SF is pretty good. Start Morrow at SG.

doc

December 12th, 2012
3:38 pm

before pointing too many fingers at the national media it is a travesty that josh is under appreciated by atlanta fans. sure, he made bone headed plays born of desire and youth and beefs with refs to give up points but obviously the desire to win and become better each year is there along with his special talents.

it is also a travesty fans in atlanta dont respect and admire what al has accomplished as josh’s running mate. i have never understood the al vs josh thing at all. so contentious and anti-fan as it is repulsive at times. well in the case of one blogger, gone of his own actions, over the top repulsive. we should be holding them as a special duo which will be the only one we see in our lifetime especially one where they get to play many years together. they are the glue not number 2’s, draft pick or uniform, both now gone.

the josh issue makes me put him in the same analogous situation to dale murphy, being shunned all these years for hall consideration and being ignored for his contributions to the game of baseball and his decade of excellence. it came as he played over 700 straight games, on asphalt as many fields were astro turf then and in the pitcher era with fences the stretched between two counties. both of those guys were multi tool, really good players because of their multiple talents though not able to overwhelm in only one talent. me, i like the totality of what they bring or brought to the game.

J.J.M.

December 12th, 2012
3:38 pm

Rev in Tampa

December 12th, 2012
3:38 pm

Buddy Grizzard

December 12th, 2012
3:40 pm

“It forces him to take long jump shots, which is not a strength.”

C-Viv you need look no further than shot locations. Last year Josh Smith was second only to Kobe in attempts from 16-23 feet, the inefficient long 2-point distance. His percentage from this range was respectable, comparable to Monta Ellis. But a small player like Ellis needs to take those shots because he doesn’t have the ability to score in the paint like Josh does. Josh has the ability to go inside for higher percentage shots on a consistent basis, so coaches punish him by not selecting him to the All-Star team.

This year Josh is still in the top 10 or so in attempts from 16-23 feet but his shooting percentage has dropped by more than 10%. Among the top 100 in the NBA in attempts from this distance, Josh has the second-worst shooting percentage and is one of only about 5 players in that group shooting below 30%. This is magnifying Josh’s poor shot selection to such a degree this year that I will not be at all surprised if he is passed over for the All-Star team again this year.