Sunday, October 03, 2010

Four Days Before the First Pre-Season Game Jamal Crawford's Mind Already Wandering

When I wrote this about Jamal Crawford on August 27th:
That Al Horford, Marvin Williams, and (to a lesser extent) Josh Smith are underutilized in the offense might mean that the Hawks could survive a trade made through clenched teeth for the expressed purpose of getting rid of Crawford lest he poison the team atmosphere.
I imagined something like what Michael Cunningham reported Saturday afternoon:
Jamal Crawford isn’t happy about his contract situation. It’s been obvious to those around him at Hawks camp that his demeanor isn’t the same. He’s being a professional but the enthusiasm is lacking.
An enthusiastic Jamal Crawford only contributes on the offensive end to begin with. What does an unenthusiastic Jamal Crawford do? Not pass halfcourt when the other team has the ball? Probably not. Not put in the work to learn and run a new offense, dominate the ball as he always has (including his career-best 2009-10 season), and make Larry Drew's job even more difficult? Possibly.

Crawford's desire for maximum financial security is perfectly understandable. His self-belief is key to his success. It is not his job to see himself as a 30-year-old, one-dimensional player no competent GM should sign to a long-term deal without knowledge of the terms of the forthcoming CBA. But Crawford was never on a good team until he was the fourth-best player on a team. That's down to an inability either to improve his weaknesses or recognize his limitations. He's not getting an extension from the Hawks. If he can't accept that, he'll only damage his future employment prospects.

"I’m just taking it one day at a time, being supportive of my teammates. I have the utmost respect for Coach Drew and his staff, that’s for sure. I try to do as much as possible without my mind wandering too much. [But] at times, you can 'overthink' it instead of just going with the flow."
We're still more than three weeks away from the start of the season, but that's not a promising sign.

No comments: