Tuesday, September 22, 2009

What I'm Looking For

What is the argument to support the opinion that the Hawks will win more games than last year?


thirdfalcon said...

All of our young players are a year older. Josh Smith had a slightly down year, as is the norm for players in the first year of their contract, and should have a better showing. Improved depth especially on the frontline. Nothing huge imo. They should finish within 5 games of where they were last year.

What I would like to know is what are the reasons the Hawks would lose more games than they did last year. What have we lost besides Flip Murry's defense?

bonitis said...

i do expect josh smith to improve, but i expect his improvement and the handling of said improvement to be extremely limited. same thing for horford. even if horford shows tremendous potential, the "handling of his improvement" is just as important/restricting.

to that regard, i say that having mike woodson as coach again will cause all individual improvements and personnel changes to have no appreciable effect on performance.

in short: same shit schemes, different turds. you wont find the requested argument here.

Drew Ditzel said...

they simply didn't overachieve last year with a decent amount of injuries and their two best players having down years and, at best, normal years.

you had a post earlier about how the hawks had to beat up on lower competition to get their wins which is true. and the argument could be made that since the lower part of the east will be better (at least Toronto and Washington will) that the Hawks record will slide.

but on the flip side, the hawks were not flukes last year. they did not randomly beat the Cavs and Celtics three times to give you a false sense of their record. that record reflected how good they were and now that same team (without Flip and his "defense") is a year older which should be a net zero loss or benefit for everyone but bibby.

you want to say they lose more to two or three lower east teams that is fine, but i have trouble buying the argument that less threes by josh smith and more depth in the front court is some how a negative.

Bret LaGree said...

Thanks for the quick responses, to which I'll respond briefly.


My biggest concern about getting to 47 wins again is the team's ability to replicate last season's three-point shooting. Everyone except for Joe Johnson had an above average or career year shooting the 3.


You hit on another point that worries me: the frontcourt are young and talented enough to expect improvement from but there appears to be little opportunity for them to have a bigger role in the offense. If they're all healthy and with Joe Smith replacing Solomon Jones they can be a key factor, collectively, defensively.


I thought the distribution of wins last season was more interesting than predictive and accurately reflected my experience of the season: the Hawks won a bunch of games they should have, games that in previous years they would have found a way to lose. That was a major step forward.

Josh Smith's potential is the greatest asset this team has. If he shapes even most of his abilities into a coherent package he can be an All-Star. Joe Smith's addition is a positive as long as he doesn't take minutes away from better players.

Also, Flip Murray's defense is only getting compliments in relation to Mike Bibby and Jamal Crawford. Now those two, they play "defense." I worry about them being on the court at the same time.

CRC said...

my buddy says:

I would have to say you got your starting 5 back with another year under there belt of playing together, you've added a prolific scorer in Jamal Crawford who is a great 4th quarter guy, mo evans is back, 8-12 guys is a difference between night and day I think Hawks win 50 games

CRC said...

I mean, whats the argument that they will win less?

Bret LaGree said...


You're kidding, right?

CRC said...

about my first post?

my buddy's argument is that now that the hawks have a deeper bench, the starters will be even better. I try to explain to him that the bench isnt that much better, and that even if it is woodson doesnt know how to use it, but he (my buddy) still says hawks win 50. He's obviously being overly optimistic as a fan but oh well.

Bret LaGree said...

No, the second one. I thought the argument as to why they'll win less had exhausted its audience here.

thirdfalcon said...

It's certainly exhausted me. But Bret is the one of the few people that give more reasons to think that than "Woodson's a bad coach". It's fine if you think that, but he's not kept the Hawks from improving so far. It just doesn't add up to me that he's going to keep them from improving this year.

dmorton said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
dmorton said...

What was the arguement that Hawks would win 47 games this time last year? There wasn't one but they did anyway. Fact is, Bibby's the only player likely to regress.

Here's a pipe dream I've been having all off-season, what are the chances Marvin becomes our #1? Slim to none, right? Well, those two games Joe missed Marvin showed something I haven't seen in a Hawk before or since. I may be romantasizing the performance a bit, but rather than take what the defense gives like JJ does, (mostly a tough shot), Marvin took what he wanted. He attacked the basket off the dribble, all the way from the 3 pt line, like LeBron does, and got to the free-throw line at will.

Obviously he doesn't have the court vision like Lebron, nor can he dribble as well, but he was only 22 last year, he's far from reaching his potential. Plus, he's talked about working on his dribbling this summer specifically. If that part of his game improves like 3pt shooting improved last summer, and his feel for the game better, I honestly think if Woody just replaces Iso Joe with Iso Marvin, it'll space defenses more for the rest of the team and Lord knows Marvin can get to the line unlike Joe which is the reason the Hawks will never go anywhere while he's our #1.

Now, can Marvin sustain that incredibly small sample size performance over the course of 82 games with teams game-planning against it? Will Woody even consider this strategy? Were the Bobcats and Bucks just really bad at guarding SFs? Who knows(well, some of those questions could be answered using stats but I'm too lazy for that). Woody obviously sees something in Marvin, else when Joe was out he wouldn't have ran their offense the way he did. But I think a simple philosphical change in using Marvin as the set-up guy who can score more effeciently than Joe will also give Joe easier and more efficient shots and keep our offense from getting stagnant when Joe's two point jumpers and runners don't fall. That plus the organic growth from Horford and Josh Smith could feasibly win us over 50 games.

Is this the most likely scenario? Probably not. But was us winning 47 games the most likely scenario last year? I'll worry about the reasons why we're supposed to be bad if we actually are in a couple months.