Saturday, March 17, 2012

Initial Feedback: Medium Fish Eat the Little Ones

Initial feedback: A completely subjective and immediate response to the events of tonight's game, featuring a comment and rating, the latter on a scale of 1 to 10, on every player who saw the floor and the head coach, along with ephemera and miscellany as the author deems necessary.

Your ratings and commentary, dear reader, are welcomed in the comments to this post.


Players
Joe Johnson: It's good to see that the pre-trade-deadline tendinitis has cleared up. 9/10

Josh Smith: After Rick Sund energized the fan base with the trade of a second round draft pick for cash, Smoove followed up with one of his most entertaining dunks of the year, a reverse 180 that brought back memories of Dominique. If Sund has stuck with the core this long, the Hawks need to stick with it through next season's playoffs. To trade Josh in the off-season or at next year's trading deadline without seeing what this group can do in the playoffs with a healthy roster would be a travesty. 8/10

Zaza Pachulia: Energized the fan base with yet another double-double. Did you enjoy the 7 assists? 7/10

Kirk Hinrich: It took 41 minutes of playing time, but 5 points and 5 assists with zero turnovers is a spectacular line for Kirk, relative to how he's been playing. With the Lakers trading for Ramon Sessions, Kirk will remain a Hawk through the playoffs. He's getting better, and we might see another impact performance in the postseason like what we saw against Orlando. He still has a chance to be worth two first-rounders if he can help the Hawks win another playoff series. 6/10

Jeff Teague: A performance that reminds you what Teague can do defensively when he tries. His 14 points, 5 rebounds, 4 assists and 5 steals against John Wall were impressive. As he watches Mike Woodson's treatment of Jeremy Lin, the sensation who doubled MSG's market capitalization in 10 magical February days, Teague should count himself fortunate that he has earned Larry Drew's trust. 7/10

Ivan Johnson: Had a monster dunk of his own, and for one play he looked like the fearless player who won a spot in the rotation early this season. That was before Drew's roller coaster minutes made Ivan start second guessing himself and hesitating with his offense. A modest 6 points and 2 rebounds in 15 minutes was his line for the night. 4/10

Tracy McGrady: Played only 9 minutes, which apparently wasn't enough for T-Mac to give his usual production. Had only 2 points and did not record an assist or a rebound. 2/10

Vladimir Radmanovic: Played only 5 minutes, so I won't bother with assigning a grade. Incomplete

Jannero Pargo: Not one of his more explosive scoring performances of the season, but this is exactly what you want from Pargo: 8 points, 1 assist and zero turnovers in 14 minutes. 6/10

The head coach
Drew should be happy that Woodson is back in business in New York. It means he's no longer a branch on a dead coaching tree. It will be interesting to see how the Hawks and Knicks perform down the stretch because both coaches have a limited opportunity to audition for a more permanent position. Can't give Drew too much credit for this performance against depleted bottom feeders. 5/10

A thought regarding the opposition
The trade of Nene for JaVale McGee helps both teams. George Karl may turn McGee into a better player than Nene, and the Nuggets obviously wouldn't ship out their franchise center for a project if he hadn't disappointed. But any transformation of McGee into a solid player was never going to happen in Washington, and Nene will instantly raise the team's professionalism. This failure of the Wizards' organizational culture reminds me how it took the Hawks organization way longer than it should have to realize (in two senses) the potential of Smoove, Teague and Zaza.

2 comments:

Ryan Murphy said...

The cash considerations are for buying Josh Powell out of his contract with a second-division team in Switzerland. Never doubt the master plan.

Buddy said...

Haha... hey that reminds me... I was really hoping the Hawks would bring back Hilton Armstrong. He's not a skilled player but he's a big body and athletic and he had some ok moments defending Dwight in the playoffs. Sadly we went into the luxury tax for Stack and Damp, so there's zero chance the Hawks take on more salary for the playoffs.