The theme of the night: this team is different.
"Two, three, four years ago, we'd have lost a game like this."Josh Smith:
"Maybe three, four years ago, we wouldn't have gotten this win. It showed the will and maturity of this ballclub."Mike Woodson:
"The last two years being in the playoffs has put this team in a totally different light. Now when they go on the court, they know they have a chance to win."John Hollinger:
Befuddled by Portland's zone defense for most of the first three quarters, Atlanta fired blanks and struggled to get shots near the basket. In a 24-minute stretch from the late first quarter to the late third quarter, Atlanta mustered only 35 points and fell behind by a dozen before rallying behind their defense and the play of Joe Johnson.Peachtree Hoops:
"Normally I'm happy when teams play zone because we have enough shooters," Mike Woodson said. "We had good looks but we couldn't knock them down."
...the rebounding by the Hawks is filled with the passion of a 1,000 enraged bulls.Greg Oden:
"There's so many of them in there. Once they get in there, they just smack at the ball."Nate McMillan:
"They won the game how they have been winning games: in the paint. I thought the defense did a good job keeping them out of the paint, but we didn't finish the plays with rebounding."Hawk Str8Talk addresses (among other things) the issue of attendance and fan involvement:
Atlanta Fans - it has been stated already that the fans haven't yet recognized that the Hawks are a good team striving to be great and greatness needs FAN SUPPORT! Well, in a half empty Hawks gym - the fans stood up in the fourth quarter and joined Josh and Joe in leading the Hawks to victory! Hairs raise on my head when thinking of the same outcome with the other half in the building. D-Wade on Wednesday...be there!The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly
Ken Sugiura has a nice note about Jeff Teague and the Teague/Woodson relationship.
Mark Bradley talks power rankings.
There's little discussion of the Hawks' decision not to foul Portland on the Blazers' final possession of regulation with the Hawks up 3 and 4.1 seconds left on the clock. I think the Hawks should have fouled. I think the Hawks should should should have fouled Greg Oden when he held the ball for about one full second on that possession. Not fouling gives Portland the chance to run one play that accomplishes its purpose and sends the game to overtime. Not fouling and switching on screens on said play leaves Al Horford chasing Rudy Fernandez 25 feet from the basket, trying to close out on him without fouling Fernandez by shooting. This is an example of inaction being the more complicated option.