Vivlamore reporting from New Orleans.
Hawks coach Larry Drew expressed concern with his team’s tendency to settle for 3-point attempts in transition Tuesday.
The good news: The Hawks set a franchise record in Monday’s loss to the Rockets with their fourth straight game of at least 10 3-pointers.
The bad news: Some of the 3-point attempts are coming on the run when Drew would like to see the action move to the front of the rim.
“In transition, we have to run for layups,” Drew said before the Hawks played at the Hornets. “We can’t just run to the 3-point line. We’ve gotten in trouble a little bit with that in the past where we do have an advantage in transition and we run straight to the 3-point line and not really attacking the basket.”
Drew said that was an issue Monday against the Rockets. The Hawks had 23 3-point attempts, making 12.
“We are still trying to find a consistency in that area. We show them tape. We talk about it. We always gravitate to that 3-point line. … That will be a point of emphasis tonight.”
In the past four games, the Hawks have made 13 3s against the Pistons, 11 against the Cavaliers, 10 against the Pacers and the 12 against the Rockets.
The Hawks are seventh in the NBA in 3-point percentage at .381. They also have allowed the seventh highest opponent 3-point percentage at .377.
* The Hawks will start a lineup of Jeff Teague, Lou Williams, Kyle Korver, Josh Smith and Al Horford. Drew said there will be no limitation on Smith, who returned Monday after missing a game with a strained right hip flexor.
“He did have limitations last night,” Drew said. “He came through it and he felt fine. We are pretty much going to let him go tonight.”
* The Hawks play the final of four games in four cities in five days. I asked Drew if he thought his team was tired.
“I think we are a little tired but this is the NBA,” Drew said. “We’ve just got to suck it up. When you get to this part of the season you do get a little fatigued. You start getting a nicks, little bruises. This is where you have to roll your sleeves up and gut it out. Every team goes through it. We just have to deal with it.”
* The Hawks were without guards Devin Harris (sore left foot) and Anthony Morrow (right hip strain) who remained in Atlanta for the two-game road trip. Harris missed his eighth straight game due to the injury. Morrow missed his third straight.
* The Hawks will have to deal with the Hornets’ Eric Gordon tonight. Gordon made his season debut in the Hornets’ last game and scored 24 points off the bench. He also had seven assists and two steals.
Hornets coach Monty Williams said Gordon will come off the bench again tonight. Williams said he wants to be cautious with Gordon, who only played nine games last season and had arthroscopic surgery on his knee because of a bone bruise.
“Part of me just wants to play him,” Williams said. “I think I made a mistake last year. We didn’t know he was injured but it might have been too much. … We want to be smart.”
Drew is fully aware of the difference Gordon could make.
“He is a phenomenal scoring machine,” Drew said. “With the ball in his hands, particularly on pick-and-rolls, he can make shots, he can get to the basket and he’s strong enough to create contact and finish. He is a guy who we are really going to have to be concerned with tonight.”
- Chris Vivlamore
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