Atlanta Hawks: Drew sticking with Williams as starter

Vivlamore reporting.

Sorry for the delay folks. I’m working on a couple of things. Here is today’s practice report.

Devin Harris (sore left foot), Anthony Morrow (right hip strain) and Johan Petro (stomach illness) will not travel with the team for Friday night’s game in Detroit. Look for coach Larry Drew to keep the same starting lineup with Lou Williams at shooting guard along with Jeff Teague, Kyle Korver, Josh Smith and Al Horford. Horford did not practice Thursday due to the right hip contusion that has been bothering him. He will travel with the team and expects to play.

When Drew first put Williams in the starting lineup against Chicago on Dec. 22, he did so because the Hawks were shorthanded with the injury to Harris. At the time he said he would have started Harris against the Bulls if he were available. I asked Drew if he has changed his mind due to the Hawks’ 6-1 record with Williams in the lineup.

“I’m going to stay with what works,” Drew said. “That’s been good for us. A couple of games I’ve thought about going back to a bigger lineup but sometimes, as I’ve said in the past, you’ve got to roll the dice a little bit – whether you adjust to the opposition or you force the opposition to adjust to you. Clearly, our last few games if there is an adjustment to be made it’s going to be on their end. I’m going to stay with what’s been working for us. He’s been good in our lineup and I’m going to keep it that way.”

* The Hawks face the Pistons Friday, the team they defeated in double-overtime on Dec. 26 after blowing a 22-point lead. Here is what Drew said about the matchup.

“Their matchups are always tough for us because they are big and they are physical,” Drew said. “One thing that has happened, that I’ve noticed, with their club is their bench guys have really been playing well, particularly (Will) Bynum. He has come off the bench and he had the big monster game against us. He has really been good for them off the bench.

“It seems like they are playing with a new sense of pride. They are a team that can hurt you in a number of ways, with their size, with their speed particularly their guards. (Rodney) Stuckey has always been a tough matchup for us because he has size and he’s strong and we don’t have a clear matchup against him. We try to combat that in different ways just to keep his numbers down.”

Bynum scored 31 points in the December meeting as the Pistons bench combined for 85 points.

* The third returns from fan voting for the NBA All-Star game were released Thursday and Josh Smith remains eighth among Eastern Conference front-court players. The forward has received 131,508 votes, placing him behind Joakim Noah (158,743) and ahead of Anderson Varejao (116,166).

* I had a really good interview with Kyle Korver after practice about the fact that he is 48th in the NBA in plus/minus rating, a surprise to those who don’t consider him a good defender. Look for that story on Sunday (online)/Monday (print).

- Chris Vivlamore

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22 comments Add your comment

Geronimo

January 3rd, 2013
3:57 pm

I’m glad LD is sticking with a lineup that has been working, it seems to be more efficient to make opponents gameplan for you than always being reactive to each opponents’ lineup, and your starters get more consistent time on the court together.

Also, is this where we sign up to Gangnam Style with the A-Town Dancers?

kojak

January 3rd, 2013
4:21 pm

Trade Josh now
In the words of Fred Sandford-he ain’t nothin but a big dummy

Johan Petro

January 3rd, 2013
4:21 pm

My tummy hurt

kojak

January 3rd, 2013
4:22 pm

Or maybe I am a big dummy since I misspelled Sanford

Rev in Tampa

January 3rd, 2013
4:32 pm

“Sorry for the delay folks.”

C-Viv has set a new standard for the blog.

Rev in Tampa

January 3rd, 2013
4:34 pm

Glad to see Petro is contributing by staying home and not passing around the bug.

I hope it doesn’t leave the Hawks short-handed. Hehehe

Rev in Tampa

January 3rd, 2013
4:36 pm

“* The third returns from fan voting for the NBA All-Star game were released Thursday and Josh Smith remains eighth among Eastern Conference front-court players. The forward has received 131,508 votes, placing him behind Joakim Noah (158,743) and ahead of Anderson Varejao (116,166).”

Have you voted? (In my most guilt-inducing pastor’s tone).

cb

January 3rd, 2013
4:38 pm

All the Hawks need to do is trade Devin Harris and a second round pick to the Sun for Michael Beasley. Then trade Deshawn Stevenson to the Kings for Jimmer Fredette. Thats all. Trade Josh if the price is right.

Rev in Tampa

January 3rd, 2013
4:38 pm

“Bynum scored 31 points in the December meeting as the Pistons bench combined for 85 points.”

There ain’t no way that’s happening again – even if Petro gives the entire team the stomach bug. That was a fluke.

Rev in Tampa

January 3rd, 2013
4:39 pm

cb,

Give it a rest.

cb

January 3rd, 2013
4:39 pm

Well trade Josh

Rev in Tampa

January 3rd, 2013
4:40 pm

“* I had a really good interview with Kyle Korver after practice about the fact that he is 48th in the NBA in plus/minus rating, a surprise to those who don’t consider him a good defender. Look for that story on Sunday (online)/Monday (print).”

Rod from College Park, you and me are getting an in print retort.

cb

January 3rd, 2013
4:41 pm

Rev in Tampa I will give it a rest when the trade get done.

Joey

January 3rd, 2013
4:42 pm

So, kojak, which two players can you get for Josh, who can put up his numbers in points, rebounds, steals, blocks, and assists?

Keep us posted while you search . . .

DB

January 3rd, 2013
4:54 pm

Trade Josh For what? For Whom? No one is giving us a top tier player for him and it would take 3 or 4 players to match his statistical prowess. Josh isnt going anywhere now nor after the season hawks fans get use to it. He will reup with the hawks because he wants to stick around to see what DF does with the roster going forward and yes it will include him.

DB

January 3rd, 2013
4:55 pm

By the way ive just been a reader and occasional comment maker but i have never seen a winning team bashed so badly. My life as an Atlanta sports fan…smh

Chris Vivlamore

January 3rd, 2013
4:55 pm

Will be closing down this blog shortly to post the story I have written for the Friday print edition of the AJC. It’s largely the same.

Rev in Tampa

January 3rd, 2013
4:56 pm

I have no clue how the +/- formula works. I just know that a positive is better than the negative. But I assume that it figures in offensive production and defensive production. Both Rod from CP and I agreed that Korver’s offensive production outweighed his defensive liabilities (slow feet) most nights.

Rev in Tampa

January 3rd, 2013
4:58 pm

C-Viv. Thanks for the heads-up. We appreciate that you read the blog and aim to please.

Astro Joe

January 3rd, 2013
5:00 pm

DB, we enjoy eating our young around here. Yum, Yum!

ED

January 3rd, 2013
5:03 pm

Trade Josh For what? For Whom? No one is giving us a top tier player for him and it would take 3 or 4 players to match his statistical prowess. Josh isnt going anywhere now nor after the season hawks fans get use to it. He will reup with the hawks because he wants to stick around to see what DF does with the roster going forward and yes it will include him.
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Thanks DB and Joey…Its So Many hating fans of his talking bout trade him they need to trade themselves….This Guy Puts Up Everynight In All Catergories…He shoot jump shots yeah but if u got a team that aint making them why not?Anybody can throw the ball up there

Astro Joe

January 3rd, 2013
5:03 pm

Rev, pretty simple… +/-. How many points were scored for your team during your time on the floor vs. how many points were scored against your team during your time on the floor. Some want to use it to measure an idndivual’s offensive/defensive performance (in a vacuum) but I think it more accurately measures your contribution to the team’s offense/defense. if the other 4 guys around suck… then your numbers will suck.