Atlanta Hawks: Drew searching for way out of four-game slump

Vivlamore reporting.

Perhaps another meeting is in order.

The Hawks have lost two games – part of their current four-game skid – since holding a team meeting Sunday to air issues affecting their recent play. While coach Larry Drew described that session as “very productive” the on-court results have been quite the opposite.

Consider the losing streak:

* They trailed by 19 points before a fourth-quarter comeback fell short against the Pistons Friday.

* They couldn’t hold a 19-point second-quarter lead in a loss to the Celtics Saturday, prompting the team meeting.

* They fell behind by 17 points in a loss to the Kevin Love-less Timberwolves Tuesday. Drew said his team was “soft” in the first half.

* They fell behind by 19 points in a loss to the injury-riddled Cavaliers Wednesday. It was just the ninth win of the season for Cleveland, who also won in Atlanta, which played without four regulars.

Not a good week at all.

The Hawks, who have also lost five of their past six games, no longer have what was a firm grip on third place in the Eastern Conference. They are now fourth behind the Heat, Knicks and Pacers and just a half-game ahead of the Bulls and Nets entering Thursday’s NBA schedule.

The Hawks host the Jazz Friday before games at the Wizards Saturday and Bulls Monday. Coach Larry Drew vowed following Wednesday’s loss that he would do what is necessary to jump start his team.

“This is a slump we are going through,” center Al Horford said. “We have to overcome it.”

Drew changed his starting lineup Wednesday, bring Lou Williams back off the bench. He said he may tweak the lineup again. He played rookies John Jenkins and Mike Scott in the first quarter. Clearly, Drew is looking for a way out of the slump.

The Hawks now play eight of their next 10 games against teams currently with .500 or better records, including rematches with the Timberwolves and the Celtics.

- Chris Vivlamore

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105 comments Add your comment

Slimjr

January 10th, 2013
5:02 pm

Slimjr

January 10th, 2013
5:02 pm

Mr. Sarcastic

January 10th, 2013
5:05 pm

How could you guys question Grandads superior basketball knowledge? He is correct about Jeff Teague. Lou should be the starting pg for this team. Did you see that suffocating defense Lou put on Irving last night. Granted Irving had a field day against Lou and got any shot at anytime he wanted but it was still better than Teague’s defense. Sure we got back in the game once Teague started to attack but that does not matter. The offense looks superb when Lou is in charge.

He is also correct about Josh. Who cares that our all star c/pf only had 4 rebounds or was absolutely terrible as far as help defense, All that matter is that Josh sucks and he and Teague should be moved A.S.A.P.. Grandad keep dropping your vast knowledge on these guys. Its all so clear you watch the games.

Big Daddy

January 10th, 2013
5:06 pm

Defend the paint, execute a better pick and roll, establish an inside presence and practice those free throws.

Slimjr

January 10th, 2013
5:07 pm

“The Hawks now play eight of their next 10 games against teams currently with .500 or better records, including rematches with the Timberwolves and the Celtics.” -C-Viv-

Slippery slope perhaps?The Hawks could be an 8th seed by the end of the month…BRUTAL!

Slimjr

January 10th, 2013
5:12 pm

THe team is not responding anymore..Stick a fork in them..

His actions have backfired [calling out his team publicly] all the time..

Never takes any blame…

vava74

January 10th, 2013
5:13 pm

LD, I am here to help;

The first think you should do is to resign.

The second is to stay as far as possible from the Hawks.

Rod from College Park

January 10th, 2013
5:19 pm

“This is a slump we are going through,” center Al Horford said. “We have to overcome it.”

How about stop worrying about we, All Star Al, and worry about me. go from the inside out.

darrell starks

January 10th, 2013
5:23 pm

DEFENSE, DEFENSE, DEFENSE, DEFENSE

IS THE ANSWER COACH.

GO HAWKS!!!!!!!!!!!!

Duluth Joe

January 10th, 2013
5:25 pm

Until Harris and Morrow are at full strength, stay with the big lineup. Zaza plays better the more minutes he gets.

This is not that difficult. Play Ivan, stay away from rookies, in particular Scott.

The team was overachieving, but there is no reason this team should be losing to Minnesota and Cleveland without their major pieces. Can not panic. Play the big men Coach Drew until you get your full complement of players back.

High-sider

January 10th, 2013
5:29 pm

“Lackadaisical Dude” (LD), I was told that “light at the end of the tunnel” was a train – my apologies, “Dude.”

darrell starks

January 10th, 2013
5:31 pm

Stick with Big lineup and stop changing all the time, must build some continuity with starting five, by end of the season everyone will no there role.

Right now everything is discombobulated with the lineup change everynight.

GO HAWKS!!!!!!!!!!

Joe

January 10th, 2013
5:34 pm

Way Out???? Sign a quality BIG MAN!!!!! It is no secret…

darrell starks

January 10th, 2013
5:34 pm

How is Ivan not playing your best bigman of the bench ?

GO HAWKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Hawks Blog Legend Worldwide Clyde

January 10th, 2013
6:02 pm

The slump started when LD stopped playing Big Ivan.

That Pacers game at home with Josh Smith out was one of the best I’ve seen the Hawks play all year. Its been down hill ever since.

KevinM

January 10th, 2013
6:20 pm

We’ve seen our team play very good when Josh or Al were out.

Let’s see if that will fix this slump…..that or a slumpbuster might be in order.

And yeah, those earlier comments about Lou’s defense? Yeah, I saw Lou swatting with his arms at one of Irving’s drives last night while backing away…….good defense for sure.

Leave Ivan in the paint and see how many drive to the hoop. Reggie Evans 2.0

High-sider

January 10th, 2013
6:21 pm

Section 303 and O’Brien (FTPB),

Maybe I did turn off the “mobile theme” app on my smartphone; I not sure. I know one thing for sure and that is “it ain’t broke so I won’t be tryin’ to fix it.” [sic]

High-sider

January 10th, 2013
6:26 pm

^Correction: “…I’m not sure.”

Astro Joe

January 10th, 2013
6:40 pm

OB, again, my issue isn’t with the player, it is with those who think he is the answer to most of the problems with this team. Remember, he hasn’t played (nor been scheduled to play) in 100 NBA games yet.

prison mike

January 10th, 2013
6:45 pm

We need a big but have to hold steady. Meaning not to trade any of the 1sts unless it makes sense. We should land picks anywhere from 15-20. I’m expecting Houston to make the playoffs but it’ll be close. We are not 3rd seed caliber. The bigman candidates.

Mason Plumlee – much improved 4 year player, athletic.
Jeff Withey – 5 blocks a game.
Rudy Gobert – stupid potential, arms longer than Bizmack
Kelly Olynyk – Canadian playing at Gonzaga avg. 17 points on 67.5% shooting.

These are just mid round prospects and we need to bring them all in for workouts.

Mookie Blaylock

January 10th, 2013
7:35 pm

Fire LD.
Trade those bums Al Wh0refart and J-Airball

HueyFreeman

January 10th, 2013
7:38 pm

Lou Williams, suffocating defense, and last night do not go together. Lou is also not a PG and should not be the starting PG. He is capable of playing the position, just like Teague COULD play the 2, but that is not his natural position. Teague’s defense was marginally better but he his overall game was better. Lou does not need to be at the PG position to handle the ball or run the offense either. He is a scorer first and foremost.

Even if you take away all of Josh’s bad shots last night we still would’ve lost. Bottom line is the slump has been due to ill advised shots, rebounding effort, and defense. People here want to point fingers and scapegoat players…the coach is responsible for adjusting to the ill advised shots, rebounding effort, and defense of his players and the other team’s. The players are also responsible for their actions and decisions on the court.

Any lineup without Zaza at least 25 mpg and Ivan 20 mpg will suffer rebounding and in the paint the way this team is constructed. No reason to not start last night’s lineup every night, alternating between Korver/Lou/Stevenson/etc. depending on matchups. There are 6 guys capable of regularly playing and/or defending the SG position on this team, 7 if you included Teague.

No reason to get in a panic and start spewing crazy talk.

keith

January 10th, 2013
7:57 pm

“DEAL WITH THE ELEPHANT IN THE ROOM”

3 Things wrong with the Atlanta Hawks:
(1) Josh Smith
(2) Josh Smith
(3) Josh Smith

“The artist formerly known as SMOOVE must have his role changed in order for this team to succeed going forward……..

Sautee

January 10th, 2013
7:59 pm

“This is a slump we are going through,” center Al Horford said. “We have to overcome it.”

“How about stop worrying about we, All Star Al, and worry about me. go from the inside out.” – Rod from CP

Just for you Rod, from a couple of blogs ago Horford talking about the Timberwolves loss:

“I think we came out uninterested. Us, the guys who are playing, I’ll take blame for that.”

I guess you didn’t see that particular quote.

Melvin

January 10th, 2013
8:07 pm

If the Pacers lose tonight, the Hawks will be back in 3rd place again…. Go Knicks and Slimjr…

keith

January 10th, 2013
8:09 pm

“The wheels are about to come off…..This skid may hit 10 games total…Wizards are playing great Basketball right now…

If Larry Drew Benched just ONE of his leaders ie.., Teague, Horford or Smith. It would send a clear message that he’s in charge and they need to get it together…

Jeff Teague and Josh Smith are so inconsistent that they are absolutely unreliable..You can not trust either one of these guys.

Big Ray

January 10th, 2013
8:19 pm

Sautee,

Memories are short around these here parts.

Big Ray

January 10th, 2013
8:21 pm

That said….having a guy around who “takes the blame for that” isn’t nearly as good as having a guy who will actually “fix that.”

Big Ray

January 10th, 2013
8:28 pm

The way out of a slump?

Need a team that sucks worse than the Hawks to have a bad night.

For God’s sake, just don’t call a team meeting whatever you do.

Slimjr

January 10th, 2013
8:44 pm

Hey Melvin, looks like the Knicks offense is discombobulated? Looks familiar?

They sure do miss Raymond Felton..

Melvin

January 10th, 2013
8:46 pm

Hansbrough is not a Bball player. He’s a football player, better yet he’s a thug out there playing bball. This guy has no bball skills at all. Dont give me that hustle and heart crap. That excessive bumping, fouling and running into people is not Bball.

Slimjr

January 10th, 2013
8:47 pm

JR SMITH IS ONLY 6′5″. His vertical must be approaching 40″?

That windmill dunk on the backup 5 is a top 10…

14 pts scored by the Knicks? Only down 2? Wow..

keith

January 10th, 2013
8:51 pm

I sincerely hope that we are one of the teams that are giving GREG ODEN a long look…He will be a “low risk” high reward” kind of guy.. He will not command much salary..If he plays 5 years for you, he will have been worth the investment…

MIKE WOODSON is still a SCRUB COACH with Great Players…Just had to add that little tidbit of info..

keith

January 10th, 2013
8:54 pm

I Hope that our Big Guys are watching this game tonight…In particular, Al Horford..He could use some of Hansborough’s intensity…

Slimjr

January 10th, 2013
8:58 pm

Hansborough moves twice as quick as Al.No way Al can replicate Hansborough’s quick feet or intensity..

You can dream can’t you? lol!

keith

January 10th, 2013
8:59 pm

J.R.SMITH MAKES CLOSE TO $3 Mill. PER…………..

If J.R Smith is only worth 3 million, then Josh and Al combined should earn about 3 million…What a horrible pay scale they have in the NBA!!!

Melvin

January 10th, 2013
9:02 pm

Slimjr,

I suspect that J.R. will put up 25 shots tonight….

Melvin

January 10th, 2013
9:05 pm

J.R. @ 3 mil is super value for the Knicks. He worth at least MLE or slightly more. I would take him over Korver b/c his ability to scored the ball from anywhere on the court…

Slimjr

January 10th, 2013
9:07 pm

Keep feeding us Chris! You are a breath of fresh air Sir!

Whats coming out of that Hawks locker room with Coach Drew at the front door is another story..

keith

January 10th, 2013
9:08 pm

HAWKS FINISH SEASON BELOW .500

By my estimation, with this Roster as currently constituted, will finish the season below .500.
I Have this team winning only 15 more games going forward…….

Slimjr

January 10th, 2013
9:09 pm

Melvin, I here you…

No Melo tonight? He’ll gladly take his plus Melo’s shots..

Slimjr

January 10th, 2013
9:12 pm

Knicks have the #1 D?

Looks like the have the worst offense even after watching the Hawks play last night..

Just brutal tonight!

keith

January 10th, 2013
9:13 pm

If Philly gets a healthy Andrew Bynum back by the All-star break, they will catch us and push us into the 9th position….

Slimjr

January 10th, 2013
9:17 pm

9th?

That would be disastrous…

Knicks 0-7 from 3 pt land..

Grandmaster JeJe (GM)

January 10th, 2013
9:22 pm

If KG never said those things to Melo, according to Doc, then why did Melo and KG talk on the phone the next day?

Grandmaster JeJe (GM)

January 10th, 2013
9:24 pm

As keith said, LD isn’t in charge

Zero charisma, no respect from his players

W.R.Terrell

January 10th, 2013
9:38 pm

LD may tweak the starting lineup again, i’m going to inspire him if he reads these blogs. Starting lineup should be ZAZA, IVAN, LOU, JJ or DEVIN and I would suggest MIKE SCOTT over the “Smoove”, simply because he makes an attempt at guarding his man. I’m not saying that lineup will win a lot of games but I am saying they will at least make a pure attempt with hustle, focus and aggression. The best thing for the “Smoove” and Al to do is watch from the sidelines and see players who are HUNGRY. Al and JT have picked up some bad habits playing with ISO Joe, and the “Smoove” , Marvin lost his game completely and I doubt if he ever recovers. Marvin’s talent were wasted yielding to players whose talents were not really superior to his. Bad coaching can kill a player and LD is simply BAD!!!!!

O'Brien

January 10th, 2013
9:48 pm

Good read from Grantland about Cousins;

But there are serious reasons to worry about Cousins’s development, and they go beyond his attitude. I’m not a Cousins skeptic or doubter yet, but he should have shown us more by now. This is a center who has never shot better than 45 percent in a season, normally an inexcusable level of inaccuracy for a big man who takes so many of his shots near the rim. (Note: He’s also taking a career-high 5.6 long 2-point jumpers per 40 minutes while making just 29 percent of them; he’s shot an acceptable percentage on those shots in his prior two seasons, but even a hit rate in the high 30s on such attempts basically amounts to sabotaging a team’s offense if someone takes them in high volumes.)

His defense is a deeper worry. The Kings have been worse with him on the court for two straight seasons, and allow a higher shooting percentage on attempts in the restricted area when he’s in the game, per NBA.com. He too often plays defense like a lazy or showboating boxer, arms at his sides, standing straight up, uninterested in expending a ton of energy. He reaches and swipes at ball handlers instead of sliding along with them. He’s also habitually lazy in transition from offense to defense, and not only because he enjoys arguing with referees when they don’t bail him out of a crazy post move.

http://www.grantland.com/blog/the-triangle/post/_/id/47208/regardless-of-a-seattle-move-the-sacramento-kings-are-still-open-for-business/

Grandmaster JeJe (GM)

January 10th, 2013
9:49 pm

Mike Scott over Smoove?????

LMAO

I hate on Smoove for his BS all day all year, but this is probably the dumbest most idiotic statement I have ever seen