Thursday, April 26, 2012

Initial Feedback: Hawks Clinch Home Court

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.

Joe Johnson: Started cold but it didn't matter with the way the Hawks collectively were shooting in the first half.  Finished hot and got into double figures in only 24 minutes of action.  Was nice to see the starters get a lot of rest before Boston comes into town on Sunday. 5/10

Josh Smith: Incredible first quarter where he was nearly perfect from the floor and was a rebounding and assist machine.  Was 10-of-14 from the field for 23 points, and 1 rebound and 3 assists away from a triple double in a game that he only played 28 minutes. 8/10

Kirk Hinrich: Had some definite hot and cold streaks shooting but finished in double figures while playing the most minutes of any starter by a large margin.  Hopefully Pargo is back on Sunday to spell Kirk so his legs can stay fresh. 3/10

Jason Collins: Don't look now, but over his last 4 games Jason Collins has averaged 5.75 points and 3 rebounds.  Now if only he was putting up those stats as the third of fourth option off the bench at the 5 it might be more reason to celebrate, but perhaps he will show his worth battling Kevin Garnett. 2/10

Jeff Teague: This game showed flashses of the player we all wish Teague would become.  Someone who is both confident taking the open jumper and driving to the basket and finishing strong.  On fire from behind the arc, hitting 3-of-4. Didn't have to contend with Jason Kidd, and Rondo is a slightly better player than Rodrique Beaubois. 7/10

Marvin Williams: Marvin's hot shooting over the past few games cooled off tonight as he only managed 6 points on 9 shot attempts.  Hopefully it was just his rhythm being off due to the blowout and seeing the rest of his teammates throwing up bad jump shots once the game was out of reach. With a short bench lacking in true scorers Marvin will need to keep putting up 12 and 5 on 50.5% shooting (38.5% from behind the arc) like he has in April. 2/10

Ivan Johnson: Seriously, why is Ivan not starting over Jason Collins? Is it just a worry about him getting into foul trouble?  Left over bad feelings over his alleged chewing out of teammates leading to the suspension? Drago was going after everything with intensity tonight and even showed the touch on a few jump shots.  How fun would it be to have Ivan and Zaza coming in behind a healthy Al with Dampier and Collins only a memory? 6/10

Tracy McGrady: TMac was only able to score two points in limited minutes, but had 8 rebounds and 4 assists in his role as court manager of the second unit.  If we're only going to get a single basket each night from TMac, we can only hope it's always as emphatic a dunk as he showed tonight. 3/10

Willie Green: When he makes his shots he's not a bad option for the second unit.  Please keep making your shots. 4/10

Vladimir Radmanovic: Had a monster dunk and a sweet touch pass inside to J-Smoove in an otherwise quiet 9 minutes of action.  1/10

Jerry Stackhouse: With no Pargo, Stack got to see some minutes with the starters in the first half.  An atrocious showing shooting ended that experiment after only 12 minutes. 1/10

Erick Dampier: It was in total garbage time, but Damp did grab 4 rebounds in only 5 minutes.  Also was able to get in some practice delivering a hard foul to a guy going up for a layup.  Perhaps his most useful skill. incomplete

The head coach 
You lose potentially your best all-around player in the 11th game of a lockout shortened season and still finish 40-and-26 and with homecourt advantage in the first round of the playoffs.  Even if Larry Drew is a coach that no one else would want, that's a pretty good season. The injuries have been abundant (10 of the Hawks 15 players have missed time this season), and there have been some poor decisions made both by coaches and players, but this team is about to begin postseason play for the fifth straight season with a chance to do some damage.  The two losses to Boston were both close games (before the blowout win last Friday), and there's no reason to think that we won't see more close games in the upcoming series.  Game 1 tips at 7pm Sunday night in Atlanta. 7/10

A thought regarding the opposition 
Once Atlanta got out to their huge lead in the first quarter Dallas paraded out the reserves.  The Mavericks needed a Denver loss in order to have a shot at the 6 seed, and the Nuggets made sure their game with Minnesota was never in doubt winning by 29.  Instead the reigning NBA champions get to play Oklahoma City in the first round starting on Saturday.


dwayne.bracy said...

Joe Johnson: Started cold but it didn't matter .... What game were you watching James? You lost all credibility after the 1st sentence. Let's see Joe hit 3/4 (75%) to start the game and scored 9 1st quarter points, so started cold? He finished shooting 63% in limited action. Yea that really deserves 5/10, biased much?

Unknown said...

Bret set a precedence for being negative... everyone else just wants to follow suit.

James Goeders said...

Dwayne, you're totally right and thanks for calling me out on it. For some reason I remembered Joe being off in the first quarter and coming on in the 2nd (when in fact he didn't get back into the game until under 5 minutes left in the quarter due to the big lead). I guess I was too wrapped up in Josh's performance during that first period. I actually had most people with higher scores but was afraid I was being homerish due to the blowout score. It wasn't meant to be a slight to Joe, more that he didn't have to play the final 13.5 minutes of the game so there wasn't enough to go on.

dwayne.bracy said...

No biggie James, at least you're one of the few honest bloggers who can acknowledge an oversight.