|Team||Poss||Off Eff||eFG%||FT Rate||OR%||TO%|
|ATL||90.6||1.25 ||59.8||51.5 ||23.3||14.3 |
|MIL||90.6 ||1.16||54.5 ||35.1 ||27.3 ||15.4|
It's a measure of the Hawks progress that back-to-back road wins can impress so little. On the spectrum of where this franchise has been, things are pretty good. On the spectrum of playoff teams, even just on the spectrum of Eastern Conference playoff teams, there's little immediate evidence of things about which to be optimistic.
On consecutive nights the Hawks have allowed 1.21 and 1.16 points per possession to the 22nd and 23rd most efficient offenses in the NBA. Atlanta's only good defensive quarter last night, the third, coincided with Charlie Villanueva picking up his fourth foul, leaving the game, an Milwaukee attempting to run their offense through Keith Bogans.
Mike Woodson may try to fold the fourth quarter in with the good third quarter: "We finally woke up and started playing after halftime. And that was the difference." but the Hawks gave up 31 points in the fourth and held off the Bucks only through the fairly improbable trifecta of Josh Smith making six of six free throws, Joe Johnson geting a 30-foot prayer and a fall-away 12-footer from the baseline to fall when he could not break down the Milwaukee defense at all off the dribble. The Milwaukee defense.
"We can’t keep playing uphill like this. It takes so much energy to come back like that and we end up running ourselves ragged just to get back into games. But every win is so important for us right now. We just have to get them any way we can."That's going to be hard to do when your starting point guard can't guard anybody and your starting power forward can play 39:29 without deigning to guard anybody suggesting, once again, that Josh Smith's minutes are governed by the bruising of Mike Woodson's ego rather than what's happening on the court.