Hawks 98 Magic 90
Due to a hectic schedule, I watched this game on tape broken up over several irregular and brief windows of opportunity. My viewing experience made it impossible to watch with any sort of discerning eye or form a coherent thought (or even what typically passes for coherent thought in this space). Which is a shame because that was a fine win Saturday night.
The best Atlanta players played the most minutes and in combinations that made sense. (Mike Woodson even appeared to make an effort to get Al Horford on the court when Dwight Howard was of the court.) The Hawks built an early lead, squandered it fairly rapidly, but fought back from behind twice in the fourth quarter and eventually finished off a good team.
The win may do little more than engender another bout of false, minor optimism but it was a tangible, positive result and the rare occurrence of such accomplishments must still be marked as the organization slowly gains in stature. By which I mean from pathetic to bad.
The Playoff Odds calculator this morning sees The Drive for 35 as irrelevant. The current target for the East's final playoff spot is up to 37 wins yet the 30-39 Hawks have a sixty-percent chance of getting there. Playing three weeks of basketball slightly above .500 is the goal.