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Showing content with the highest reputation since 07/12/2009 in all areas

  1. 29 points
    The world`s newest Hawks fan was just born this evening at 8:18pm. Little Elizabeth has already been featured in the stomach of my wife in one of the two playoff rally videos themed "True to Atlanta," where my wife said "True is the next generation of Hawks fans" while holding a sign pointing to her pregnant belly. My wife and I showed up at the hospital at 8am this morning with my wife wearing one of the Hawks playoff t-shirts. (I have photos but don`t know how to upload them here on mobile. No @Spud2Nique , not anything dirty or revealing.) Just wanted to share with y`all that the world of Hawks fans grew by one this evening, just in time for the Eastern Conference Finals! Go Hawks!
  2. 27 points
    On August 5, 1960 My beautiful, sweet wife and I exchanger our vows. Strangely enough, after 55 years, she's still putting up with me. We have 4 children, 6 grand children and one great grand son which I hope will become a Hawks fan. I know. This is not Hawk related but, when you've been married for 50 or more years, perhaps the moderators will allow you to post something like this!
  3. 26 points
    You are Howard's b~!tch. Glad you aren't on this team anymore. Howard shoving you was a passing of the torch, so to speak. In one shove, he did more than you did your entire career with Atlanta. You never fought back. You never pushed back. You are all talk. I don't even care that Howard was ejected. He has set the tone for this team and I hope that they are nastier hitting the final stride of the regular season and into the playoffs. Go Hawks! Ain't scared of Boston.
  4. 26 points
    Man I hope you guys appreciate how good this site looks and operates compared to that site!
  5. 26 points
    :offtopic2: This has nothing to do with sports. It's personal. But, I want everyone to know and invite everyone to come and be with us. On August 5th (Thursday) @ 7:00 P.M. my wife and I will be celebrating our 50th wedding anniversary. This will be @ Pilgrim Baptist Church in Hayesville, N.C. We plan a - renew your vows - with cake and goodies afterward. Send me a PM if you need driving directions. :whistling:
  6. 25 points
    Once a year the moderators of the Squawk allow me to defend my title of "The oldest rat in the barn." Well, I'm here - - - Again. If any of you posters want to claim the title, come on. Today I hit 82!
  7. 25 points
    It's Biblically bad here! I've been very lucky that somehow my area of Houston doesn't flood but my parents and siblings are all stuck in their houses in their neighborhoods and can't get out because of flooding on entrances to neighborhoods. I've been out doing boat rescues the past 2 days trying to save people who couldn't get out. Unfortunately my family are all much farther north than me and all of our major highways and roads to get there are closed from flooding. My in-laws lost their brand new house and pretty much all of their memories from boxes that had pictures and stuff. They had water all the way up to the 2nd floor and this thing went from looking like it would just be a regular rain storm to full-blown flooding in an instant because our bayous and reservoirs overflowed. Thanks all for checking in and for the kind thoughts. Please keep us all in your prayers as this is the worst flooding we've ever had and not sure there's an end in sight to the rain. They're releasing water from the lakes and it's making it even worse.
  8. 25 points
    The Atlanta Hawks led the Washington Wizards 87-77 after the third quarter yesterday, which isn't nothing as leads go, but, in its broad outline the game still had the feel of one whose outcome could go either way. The Hawks looked sharper, sure, but the Wizards had won the second quarter and gotten as close as three points in the third, and a tight, exciting, competitive finish between two of the East's best teams seemed plausible. Then each member of the Hawks grew four extra limbs and torrents of lava erupted from their roaring mouths and a pit opened up at midcourt and the Wizards fell into it and were consumed by the earth itself, and the Hawks won by 31. That's pretty much how it goes for Atlanta's opponents, these days. They've won 22 of their last 24 games. They are f***ing terrifying. Everyone who logs minutes for the Hawks is good. Not just in the sense that literally everyone but Kirk Hinrich who makes it to the NBA, by definition, is good at basketball, but also in the sense that every member of Atlanta's rotation causes matchup problems in some way or another. The Hawks never don't have a bunch of guys on the court who can shoot and move the ball and defend; they just keep coming, foul trouble and injury and heat-death of the universe be damned, more and more guys who can shoot and move the ball and defend, forever, all of them wearing red and navy. A defender leaves his man for a split second to rotate toward the hoop and head off a dribble-drive, and suddenly the ball is pinging around faster than your eye can follow it, like laser light through a mirror-maze, everybody scrambling madly to close out every corner of a hopelessly stretched-out floor, until it finds a guy, some guy, who the f*** is that guy, do they have eight dudes on the floor or what, and he's draining an open three, another f***ing open three, and every skeleton inside the other team turns to jelly in defeat. Defending the Hawks is as much a test of mental and psychological endurance as it is a physical challenge. Can defenders summon the energy and focus and commitment and sheer will to A) help contain the ball-handler, then B) anticipate the ball movement, then C) run like hell to close out on a shooter, then D) recover, rotate, and run like hell toward another shooter, all at a dead sprint, all the time, for 48 minutes, when there are shooters everywhere and it never works and after the first five minutes it starts to seem like nothing so much as trying to build a sandcastle in the actual ocean itself, like an interpretive dance whose meaning is "futility?" This is why the Hawks won the fourth quarter by 21 points last night. The Wizards, god bless them, were tired. Physically and mentally. In their heads, they were already back at the hotel, sobbing into their pillows. Still, even stipulating that all the Hawks are good, man, Kyle Korver is just unfair. My favorite play in that highlight reel isn't the slick behind-the-back pass to DeMarre Carroll on the break, or the sweet lob over the top to Al Horford for a dunk, or the bananas catch-and-shoot from 28 feet. No, my favorite is the simple corner three Korver hits at around 1:55. He loops along the baseline as Dennis Schröder sends an entry pass to Horford in the post; the instant Horford detects that the Wizards are twisted out of shape defensively, he fires the ball out to Pero Antić at the top of the key, and Antić doesn't even waste time rotating it to the next guy: he skips it right past Thabo Sefolosha to Korver in the corner. Look at the two Wizards, Bradley Beal and Martell Webster, as they recognize where the ball is going and both, simultaneously, sellout to get there. Their mingled desperation and despair. Even as they're flying out there—Hell no, not this time, goddammit not another three—they know they're beat. The shot rattling around for a second, before (of course) dropping through, is just a taunt, a troll move, one last glimmer of false hope. Ol' Kyle's been around for a long time—he played with Allen Iverson in Philadelphia what seems like a thousand years ago—but until he landed with the Hawks, he'd mostly been used to stretch the floor for guys who can't shoot. Credit the Hawks's braintrust with the mad-scientist idea of combining him with a bunch of other guys who can shoot, and letting him do stuff other than running to the wing with his hands in front of his chest; turns out, he's a nifty passer, a smart and credible defender, and can drive past a closeout to get himself in range for a floater. He's a real basketball player now that, at 33, he's finally allowed to be one. All the while, the threat of his shooting range still warps NBA defenses just as much as John Wall's speed, or Boogie Cousins's power, or tying all their shoelaces together, or an asteroid strike. And: he's Atlanta's fourth-best player. The Hawks are a nightmare. http://deadspin.com/my-god-my-god-the-hawks-are-a-f***ing-juggernaut-1678986975
  9. 25 points
    I've been on the Squawk 10 years. Which is coincidental considering what's going on with me and my family right now... The Squawk is my home and I feel like you guys are my family. Without going into detail, I'd just ask you to say a sincere prayer for me and my family - and if that isn't your thing, just keep me in your thoughts. Thanks guys.
  10. 25 points
    Jamison is being brought in to be mentor to the young and upcoming Elton Brand.
  11. 24 points
    I have a great sense of humor and even I'm offended by this. No one should ever joke about hiring Mark Jackson.
  12. 24 points
    think about it..... if BOSS didn't man up and bust in for that rebound and putback, we lose the game by one point and Pierce is again the hero with the game winning 3. We go back to Washington and most likely don't come out of there with a win. Especially with the crowd going nuts over Wall's resurrection and Pierce's heroics. But all that's not going to happen, because of one man's determination to NOT let it happen. THANK YOU BOSS!!!!!!!!!
  13. 24 points
    Sign up below here. Since many of you are so upset and hate the Hawks and Ferry so much and we're the worst franchise ever, please sign your names below to have your Hawksquawk account deleted, since you won't need it anymore. {/sarcasm}
  14. 23 points
    he put about as much effort into this as he did in his rebounding...
  15. 23 points
    To those of you who helped out with donations to support Hawksquawk. It was certainly a VERY much appreciated thing and I didn't want you all to think it was unnoticed. Also all of the very kind words of support helped out quite a bit. As some of you may know, I've been involved in an admin capacity with Hawksquawk for over 12 years now and for the most part there hasn't been many days where I haven't gotten on Hawksquawk either as a fan or as a moderator all that time. Dealing with the frustrations of being a fan, a mod, and an admin (functionality of the site) day in and day out for such a long time just kinda wore me out. On top of that I was dealing with a torn ACL and meniscus and the pain meds were making me a bit grouchy.Surgery went well and I'm on the road to recovery. The time away has been really good and I'm already getting involved with the development of our upgraded forum software that will hopefully be out before the season starts. Other than that I'm probably going to continue to take a break from being on here on a daily basis for a bit longer and then return around the time the season re-starts. I would like to thank @AHF and our newest mods @PSSSHHHRRR87 and @lethalweapon3 for stepping up and helping out with the site while I've been gone. It was nice to know that the site has been and will continue to be in good hands. And to all of you who sent really nice messages via PM or in the various threads that were created, please know that it wasn't unnoticed and was/is really appreciated. So as Bill & Ted would say, continue to be good to one another and I'll see you guys (and gals) around in the near future when we can get back to you guys hating me for being a :sun:
  16. 22 points
    I just found out 10 minutes ago that this site was back up.
  17. 22 points
    Free agent forward Kris Humphries has agreed to a one-year, $4M deal to return to the Atlanta Hawks, league sources tell The Vertical.
  18. 22 points
    Forgot to mention that he said the Hawks brass felt they needed to take a risk on Dwight. They feel if they can resurrect his career other big name free agents will take notice and start taking the Hawks seriously. Right now the Hawks can't even get to the table. I understand why they did this, and I've been saying all off season the Hawks need to take risk.
  19. 22 points
    Not sure why everyone is so upset. We've had the same exact team for 5 years now. You all are upset that we didn't maintain the status quo? We obviously weren't going to win anything as constructed. Kudos to Bud for shaking it up a bit. We addressed our biggest weakness, rebounding. Horford has gotten worse over the years and now has turned into a spot up jumpshooter. No thanks to 30M/year for that. Hello JJ contract all over again. He ain't getting any better and he sucked in the playoffs. Howard is the better player, better defender and will tremendously improve our rebounding, while also being much cheaper. He played with ballhog Harden for the last 3 years, they didn't use him on offense at all. I think he's going to see a resurgence here (if he stays healthy). Even if not, I'll take his 14/12/2 over Horfords jumpshooting and no rebounding. We were never going to win anything while facing that large of a rebounding deficit every game. Teague had peaked. He's not getting any better. Schröder's per36 numbers are already nearly identical to Teague and he's 22 years old. He has a lot more potential. No reason to have two nearly identical players splitting minutes. Instead we traded his one year deal for a solid young SF prospect and drafted another swing player. In addition, Horford was offered 5/136, let him leave if he doesn't want that from us. I'd rather spend the money elsewhere. The cap increases again next year and we will be able to spend again. The positive sign is that this new ownership is not bashful about spending money. I like where we are headed.
  20. 22 points
    I want to see Al improve before we commit. Sent from my SM-N910P using Tapatalk
  21. 22 points
    Congratulations and many thanks in advance to the Squawk's newest moderators: lethalweapon3 & PSSSHHHRRR87 Both of these guys are among our best posters and known for their level-headed approach to discussions on the Squawk -- in short, we are lucky to have them! @Dolfan23 and I have only so many hours in the day, and we are thrilled they are willing to help keep this site the absolute best for Atlanta Hawks discussion anywhere on the net. We are fortunate that they are a two of a larger number of very qualified posters on this site, so please don't take it as an insult if you weren't tapped and have an interest. You can feel free to PM any one of us if you would like us to keep you on the 'list' for future consideration. As with the rest of the mods on this site, both of these guys have other interests and obligations in life so let's try to make an extra effort to ease them into their newest role by playing nice. You can wait until they've gotten worked in and have their banning paddles at the ready before trying to bust their chops: Congrats and welcome to our newest moderators! @lethalweapon3 @PSSSHHHRRR87
  22. 22 points
    Being the oldest known Hawksquawker, I am allowed certain leeway occasionally.Everyone knows this has absolutely nothing to do with the Hawks, but I just wanteveryone here to know something that the Old Gray Mule is proud of - - -Today, my bride and I celebrate our 53rd wedding anniversary!I want to say to the big wheels here: Thank you for allowing me to post this.
  23. 21 points
    .... aaaaaand now .... a 19" bundle of joy from Atlanta, Georgia .... .... he measured in at a clean and ready 6lb, 14 oz .... .... the nurses haven't seen hands this big since some cat named Kawhi .... .... his court vision is electric, his passing (gas) is tremendous, and he literally came into the world dribbling ... ..... the doctor didn't smack him, he smacked the doctor, he's kg05! Hey, this thread is hawks related. He has a hawk inspired name. Plus he came just in time for us to watch last night's game. That's a real fan. Ah, this is the best I could do. I been up for 2 days almost.
  24. 21 points
    Thought I'd post this here instead of PMing since I think many would want to know. Wife and I evacuated yesterday morning from Beaumont based on what we thought we were seeing emerge. Hunkering down for the time being in a hotel room in Baton Rouge. We just got word that our county's emergency management office has issued a mandatory evacuation for our neighborhood in the last hour. Based on what I've learned from people who have lived in the area for a few decades, it's going to be a close call as to whether we get water in our house--probably more likely than not, but it's not a given either way. At least we're safe. Godspeed, brother Dolf.
  25. 21 points
    I swear it seems like I never see any of the current or even past players talk about winning a championship in Atlanta. Al, Millsap, Korver, etc. always sound so passive. Dennis seems more concerned about having a starting position. It's about time a Hawks player say they want to win a championship. You see superstars like Klay talk about if they don't win a championship it's a failure, stars like LeBron, Wade, and many more got that alpha attitude. I hope this new attitude spreads all over the team.
  26. 21 points
    Hi everybody, it's been long time since I was here last time. I am from Europe and I watched Malcolm a lot last couple of years. And let mi tell you: You got THE STEAL! This may be the best sign Bud ever did. By far. I don't have words to express how good this guy is. Someone said beast. Well, he is no beast, but I never saw US player in Europe so talented and smooth like him. First, he is great team player, true point guard, great passer (don't let 6 assists per game fool you, in Europe they count them differently), his court vision is incredible, and his shooting is... I dont know what to say. Maybe best thing about him is how easy he creates for himself and others and how cool he is in the clutch. In Europe crowd is very, very hostile, to say the least, when you play away they spit at players, throwing everything they got at them, threatening to kill them, they have those lasers always in the eyes of opponents and so on, for American fan is hard to imagine atmosfere like that...And Malcolm... He is like born to play under pressure. I don't know his shooting percentages, but when the game is on the line he always scores or finds the open man. I never saw him missed important bucket. I swear. So, to cut this short, Atlanta got the biggest steal ever, but they must use him right. He could easily be second best scorer on this team.
  27. 21 points
    DEMARRE CARROLL CONTRIBUTOR It wasn’t that long ago that I was really struggling to make it in the NBA. Early in my career, I would only get spot minutes on different teams. Being in that situation, scared of making a mistake that would cost me my job, I would always play tight and nervous. I didn’t feel like I had the ability to be myself on the floor. But when I came to Atlanta, things started changing for me. It didn’t take me long to find a role with the Hawks. Once I made it into the starting lineup, it didn’t take long — only a couple of games — to begin playing the aggressive style of basketball I’m known for now. I felt myself improve game by game, and by the time this past season rolled around, I was ready to unleash the Junkyard Dog. DeMarre Carroll As you might have already heard, earlier this week I agreed to become a member of the Toronto Raptors. It was a difficult decision, but when I considered all the factors, it was the right move for me and my family. I’m really excited about my future in Toronto, but it only feels right to say a proper goodbye to the city of Atlanta, which will always feel like a home to me. The Hawks organization — from the coaches, to the front office, to the fans, to my brothers in the locker room — gave me so much confidence in my abilities as a player, and it changed my life. Lots of guys have long careers in this league and never get to play on a team as successful as we were last year. Winning 60 games in a season is an honor that’s not lost on me, and I’ll carry memories from this past year with me forever. The biggest reason why I was able to play my best basketball in Atlanta is because of the organization’s player development. All of the coaches worked hard to make every guy on this roster better, and they deserve a lot of credit for our team’s improvement this year. Kenny Atkinson pushed me to take my game to another level. Darvin Ham shared the tricks he picked up during his long NBA career to help me develop my skills around the basket. And then there was Quin Snyder, who was the first coach who took me under his wing while he was an assistant here. Earlier this week I agreed to become a member of the Toronto Raptors. The big difference between regular NBA players and superstars isn’t just talent, but the way they train. Quin and I just kind of clicked right away when I came to the Hawks, and he began working with me to develop skills that I hadn’t really touched before. His belief in me built up my confidence so much. One thing he taught me during practice was this move where I dribbled between my legs into a spin move and then a step back jumper. It’s the type of shot you mostly see in video games. He told me that I could try the move during a real game, but if he got in trouble for it I’d have to wait until next year to try it again. After working on it for a while, I felt like it was game-ready, so I gave it a try … and I missed. So next thing I hear is Coach Bud on his feet hollering at Quin, “What the hell are you guys working on during practice?” Quin just sort of shrugged, and told me after the game that the move looked good … I just needed to hit the shot. Towards the end of the season, it felt right to try the move again and this time I made the shot. Then I heard Coach Bud yell, “Good job, Quin! That’s how you develop a player!” Coach Bud always had a way of coming around if you made a play. I appreciated Quin because he encouraged me to take risks, and that really meant a lot because no other NBA coach had given me that opportunity. I’m really going to miss the locker room. It’s a great group in there, and I know they’ll find success for a long time. Enes Kanter, DeMarre Carroll, Paul Millsap I hung out with Paul Millsap a lot while I was here, so I felt fortunate to be able to go through this process with him. This was the first time I’d ever been a priority during free agency, so I appreciated having him around to get advice. Paul’s a great teammate and I’m going to miss playing with him. I’m also going to miss getting to watch Kyle Korver shoot the ball. There was this one shooting drill we had in practice, and Kyle would just dominate everybody. It took me a while to even build up the courage to challenge him. I practiced for a couple of weeks and was hitting most of my shots, so I called Kyle over and said I was ready to take the throne. I told him I’m the Black Kyle Korver. When I looked into the crowd and saw those #5 jerseys and Junkyard Dog t-shirts, it meant everything to me. We each took turns putting up five threes, and when I made four out of five, he’d make five out of five. If I hit three out of five, he’d make four out of five. No matter how many times we played, Kyle always found a way to beat me by one if I missed a shot. He told me to try again next year when I was ready. Well, I’m telling him now that Black Kyle Korver will get his revenge. It’s on. Finally, to the fans, thank you especially. I will always be thankful for the way this city treated me on and off the court. This was the first time in my career where I really felt like a household name. I can’t describe how much it meant to me every time a fan would approach me in public just to say that they loved the way I played the game. You guys always made me feel like a superstar, so I hustled as hard as I could to play like one. When I looked into the crowd and saw those #5 jerseys and Junkyard Dog t-shirts, it meant everything to me. Without you guys, I really don’t believe I’d be the player I am today. Cavaliers Hawks Basketball When I was injured during the first game of the Eastern Conference Finals, I was really scared. I thought that the worst had happened. But what could have been one of the worst moments of my life became one of the most memorable. That standing ovation that the fans in Atlanta gave me as I got up off the court gave me goosebumps and it’s something that I’ll always remember. God bless all of you. I’m really proud of what we accomplished together. Best, DeMarre P.S. Toronto, I know you guys loved Jerome Williams back in the day. Well, get ready for JYD 2.0 to come to your city! I’m ready!
  28. 21 points
    Firstly, I would like to say congratulations on proving the haters wrong by beating the Bulls tonight. I feel like we (Memphis) and yall (Atlanta) are in the same boat. We both are in small markets (although I don't consider Atlanta a small market, but everyone else does), we are both young, energetic, and a both sleepers. I legitimately think yall can beat the Bulls in a 7 game series, but it will be tough. Joe Johnson and Jamal Crawford have really impressed me and I like what yall have going on on yall's team. No matter what happens in our games, the media will always try to downplay the significance of our wins and talk about what the other team did to lose the game instead of talking about what we did to win the game. We are extremely used to that by now, and I think yall are too. We just have to let our play on the court do our talking. I just came by here to congratulate the Atlanta Hawks on a great win, and good luck in the future! Here's to hoping for a Grizzlies-Hawks Finals matchup! :drinks:
  29. 20 points
  30. 20 points
    Getting a starting good center for a mid teen first is a steal. Great trade for us. Can we all give @NBASupes some dap here? Some outright love? All his insider talk was spot on!
  31. 20 points
    Trae is a different breed. Literally going to start keeping my hands under my face to prevent my jaw from dropping on the floor all game. 🤣
  32. 20 points
    Dwight Howard this year has been playing great but remains seen as a "Glorified Role Player" by some people because he has been averaging a "measly" 16 PPG. And about how he is just a glue guy who does the dirty work( he does, but I think he is more than that) So I did a quick google search and saw that he has been playing 28 minutes a game so far this season. A good decision since we have a strong bench and look to make a post season run. But if you do the math and calculate his current numbers by the amount of minutes he played in his first year in Houston (33.7 I chose this because even though he was coming off an injury, It is one year where played alot of games and was seen as a Top center), It jumps to 18.6 ppg, and this is with our current struggle on offense with feeding him the ball and getting him to his spots. By the end of the year IF he is averaging around 32 minutes a game (Horfords minutes last year), and we fully integrate him in the offense with pick and rolls post ups, and dump offs then he should definitely average close to another 20 and 10 season. I think we should all write a thank you letter to James Harden and the Rockets for convincing the league that Dwight Howard is another Tyson Chandler and allowing us to sign him.
  33. 20 points
    Hello to every Hawks Fan and every member of this forum !! :) I am a Hawks fan from Germany. My love for the Hawks grew 2013, when Dennis was drafted. I always was a big fan of Schröder, since i first saw him play i my hometown gym against some of my old teammates. At this time he played in the third german league. I always liked his style of play and his confidence and believed he can be a big time player. Since he was drafted by the hawks i watched nearly every game of atlanta and really became a Die Hard Atlanta Hawks Fan!! This team really got me excited! I still watch every game and am really looking forward for next season. Some time ago i started to read in this forum and now i decided to join the action and discuss with you guys and girl about our beloved hawks. So enough of my introduction. Lets come back to my headline. I really believe the Hawks are one of the winner of the offseason and improved their team overall and here is why...! 1) Howard is a big upgrade over Horford for our team: - Howard will be the much needed Big for us. He will improve our overall rebounding and take this big weakness away. Besides that he can be our rim protector that will make our defense deadly. Just image a defensive lineup with Dennis, Baze, Thabo and Sap. This will be one of the best defensive lineups in the entire league! - Horford was soft as hell and Howard will bang inside and get us the easy buckets and will make space for our shooters. - Howard is a media guy and finally atlanta will get some attention!! 2) Resign of Baze and making Dennis a starter: - These two players are our best young guys with the most upside. Baze is having the athletic abilities and added the shooting last year. He can be a very good player and iam looking for him to get better next season. He also is a very positiv energy guy, that always helps with team chemisty. I think him, dennis and howard will be a good connection. - Dennis of course is our guy of the future! With the starter minutes he can develop into an allstar! I can imagine he will have a breakout season and maybe will be a MIP candidate. I am also looking forward to his connection with Howard. These to can provide a deadly P&R, that will also give oppurtunities for our shooters. 3) Developing of THJ and our rookies: - It's the second year of him. He can absolve the whole offseason with the team and according to experience players under Coach BUD often improve dramatically in their second year. So maybe he will surprise us all and can be a scorer/shooter of the bench. - I also like our rookies. Prince can be the 3 and D player for us at SF that we need so much. Bembry can be another ball handler who will make plays and facilitate. These two just fit in our system and improve our weaknesses. 4) Jarret Jack! - Very good signing! He can be a scorer of the bench and mentor dennis! This can be huge.. just imagine what steph curry said in his mvp speech! I think BUD also signed him to help dennis develop. 5) Malcom Delaney: - also a very good acquisition with no risk. He was a very good player in europe and also a big time winner! I am excited how his game will translate to the nba. So i am really satisfied with the offseason by the hawks so far. I would be perfect if we can sign Humphries again or some shooting of the bench. But at this point iam very happy with the job the hawks organization has done. So this was my first post and i hope you will forgive me for my bad english and let me know how you think about the hawks offseason and this team.
  34. 20 points
  35. 20 points
    I often go to the sports sites and just stare at the standings ... I am blown away by this
  36. 20 points
    Brand said other good teams were courting him but he chose ATL because of Ferry and what he is trying to do. Said we will be as good as those teams that were courting him with his help.Korver chose us over othersBrand chose us over othersMillsap chose us at a bargainSources indicated we were the team Paul was interested in if he left LA (DOC ruined that tho)Lou chose us at a bargain last yearWe are beginning to be desired, no matter what the haters may say...the culture is changing, and this before we even play the season with BUD as our coach and smoove gone
  37. 19 points
    Find someone who looks at you the way Trae Young looks at John Collins!
  38. 19 points
    ...and I could not be happier. We have waited since Nique was traded to the Clippers for a true, honest to God MUST SEE TV superstar. That, my friends, is a long ass time ago. We're talking in that time period if you had a kid then or were a kid then you've grown up and out of the house with your own kids by now. Trae Young is an unreal. He can score one point in an entire half, shrug his tiny shoulders, and go back out there in the second half and put up almost thirty in a half. And in between those points he runs the offense gets double digit assists and literally forces the opposing team to change their defense just to stop one small guard. I haven't felt like THIS GUY IS MUST SEE TV since Nique was here. We can argue all day and night about what does superstar mean. It comes down to me to two things: can you see that guy as the best player on a championship team and is he truly BIG TICKET. Like, if you had a chance to go watch him you would cancel your plans and get there. That is what Trae Young is for us. He isn't a dunker. He isn't blocking shots or getting steals. He just hits shots like a mad bomber and passes off the rock like Nash 2.0. If you could combine Curry's shooting and Nash's passing you get Trae Young. And he is OURS Hawks fans. Enjoy every game you get to see from him. Trust me as one of the old timers here. You rarely get the true superstar in you lifetime on your favorite team. Enjoy it.
  39. 19 points
    Yes, Billy earned himself a statue, too. Sorry, Danny. Good evening, Friends! I am not just addressing all of you out there in Atlanta Hawks Nation, eagerly awaiting today’s season opener versus the Detroit Pistons (7:00 PM Eastern, Fox Sports Southeast and V-103 FM in ATL, Fox Sports Detroit) at Little Caesars Arena. By “Friends,” I also refer to individuals among us of the Quaker faith. If you’re not one, and you come across one, hug one. (WARNING: the following may contain perspectives gained from the Cracker Jack Box School of Theology. Viewer discretion is advised.) Around for over 350 years since its founding in England, the Quakers’ central tenet involves a belief that there exists a spiritual “light within”, a light which each human can internally access through experientialism, as opposed to relying on external, sacramental sources. Formally the “Religious Society of Friends,” Quakers got their name when their mid-17th-century founder, a dissenting English preacher testifying amid accusations of religious blasphemy, cited a magistrate judge who mockingly claimed he “bade them tremble” at what the founder asserted was “the word of the Lord”. The basis for “Friends” is a biblical reference in the Book of John, where The Notorious J.H.C. distinguishes his “friends” from mere servants. Associated with the Quakers’ signature wide-brim hats was the founder’s refusal to remove hats in court, or to comply with orders to be subservient or subjugate to laws that implied some divinely driven hierarchy among humans. It is why many Quakers grew to be acknowledged among the foremost abolitionists and opponents to slavery. It is also why they became one of the Protestant sects most rooted in pacifism. After World War II, the Quakers, many of whom were conscientious objectors, would become the first religious organization to receive a Nobel Peace Prize. The treatment of Quakers as heretics worthy of persecution was frequent in both the Old and the New World, where a Quaker convert turned colonial by the name of William Penn set up shop in the 1680s. The recipient of land as repayment of debts the King of England owed to his father, Penn granted 1,000 acres in his new Province of Pennsylvania to the Quakers’ founder, vowing to establish a colony where inhabitants were free from religious persecution and unjust imprisonment. He also planned and developed the capital of the future United States, the city of Philadelphia. Penn insisted that Quaker grammar schools be open to all citizens. His William Penn Charter School (1689), the first Quaker school in America and the school that, today, claims a strapping fellow named Matt Ryan as an alum, offered education to all races as early as 1770. Growing schools like Penn Charter began to build campuses outside of Philadelphia’s original city proper. Westtown School (1799) was built for coeds to live in West Chester, a one-day carriage ride away from the secular influences of Philadelphia. Friends Central (1845) moved out of Center City Philly to a sprawling suburban campus in Wynnewood in 1925. Beginning in the 1960s, notably with Power Memorial in NYC, DeMatha in suburban Washington, D.C., Evan Turner’s St. Joseph’s (of Hoop Dreams fame) outside Chicago, and St. Anthony in Newark, Catholic schools began recruiting and enrolling standout African American prep athletes, especially in the desegregating sport of basketball. The idea was to gain positive notoriety, local prestige and, in the process of building renowned athletic programs, perhaps some new adherents as well. The successful religious-based basketball programs became powerhouses on a regional, state, and even national scale. The movement to cast larger nets for basketball talent extended not only to religious schools like Philly’s Roman Catholic High, but the secular suburban ones, too. Wynnewood, in Pennsylvania’s Lower Merion Township, is home to not only Friends Central, but the public Lower Merion High School that Kobe Bryant and his many jersey-rocking stans have made famous. It was probably around the time of young Kobe’s prominence that Friends Central, and other Quaker schools, decided their athletic programs needed to get in on the act. The first future NCAA Final Four hero to walk the halls at Friends Central was a pogo stick out of Philly named Hakim Warrick. The Quaker schools ran independently from the state’s interscholastic hoop tourneys at the time, yet in 2001, Warrick helped snag the school’s first Friends Schools League title since 1974 before going on to become a legend at Syracuse. The next year, they drew future Arizona Wildcat Mustafa Shakur away from a Philly public school named coincidentally after William Penn. By the end of that decade, Friends Central was riding the skills of Philly-kid Amile Jefferson to the first of four straight state independent-school titles, drawing the attention of scouts at Duke University. Jefferson would go on to become a three-time team captain for a Blue Devils squad that won the 2015 NCAA title. No Dookie would ever appear in more games than Jefferson. Coach K and company didn’t return to this particular well at Friends Central, leaving the state’s 2016 Class AA Player of the Year, senior De’Andre Hunter, who was raised in Northeast Philly near his Under Armour circuit-ball teammate (Hawks two-way contractor Charlie Brown) to settle for a less-accomplished ACC program at the University of Virginia. But Duke was not done with Quaker schools from the Quaker State. Sports Illustrated, while producing a full-length documentary in 2018, claimed the Westtown School’s basketball team featured, “perhaps the greatest starting five in HS basketball history,” which is lofty praise, indeed. The towering center Mo Bamba commanded everyone’s attention, but it was the super-shy introverted kid, about five inches smaller, that Westtown’s head coach could not stop raving about. “Cam (Reddish) is the hardest working player I’ve ever had,” said Westtown coach Seth Berger to SI, “it’s not close… You’ll never see him try a move that he hasn’t practiced in the gym by himself… He’s the best offensive player I’ve ever seen in high school… unquestionably, the best combination of skill, size, athleticism, and intelligence.” More lofty praise for Reddish, 2018’s Mr. Pennsylvania Basketball, who grew up in gritty Philly-burb Norristown, same as Hawks coach Lloyd Pierce’s wife. Once more, Coach K was sold. Outside of high school hoops, Hunter and Brown trained together under Sean Colson, a former Philly prep star and journeyman pro who had a cup of tea in the NBA back in 2001, with ten-day contracts in Atlanta and Houston. De'Andre took Hakim’s and Amile’s college-championship legacy at Friends Central and turned it into a lineage. He led his UVA Cavaliers on a wild-and-woolly March Madness journey to the 2019 NCAA title while avenging an embarrassing loss when the top-seeded Cavs had to play the 2018 tourney without him. Another accented DeAndre of sorts, the Atlanta Hawks’ DeAndre' Bembry, mentored the college star, Brown, who followed him down the road from Friends Central at St. Joseph’s University. Now they may very well be teammates on an NBA floor. All of these local connections add credence to those who suspect Travis Schlenk, the Hawks’ GM and new Prez of Basketball Ops, must have aced a Chemistry class or two back in his own school days. Even better, Schlenk came away with a bachelor’s in something called Human Ecology, the interdisciplinary study of humans’ relationships with their natural, social, and built environments. But I posit there’s more involved than mere Philly roots when Schlenk and the Hawks maneuvered to pair these particular lottery talents with Atlanta’s growing stable of blue-chip pro-spects. Quaker schools are not into the whole proselytizing business. But both Westtown and Friends Central do require their students to attend a weekly “Meeting for Worship.” It’s akin to a collective for a Protestant church service. Except here, the Meeting of Friends and students involves sitting together, generally in silence, for at least a half-hour. Exceptions may include a Meeting leader who presents a query, or food for thought, as a point of initiation. Occasionally, after many minutes of pondering, an attendee will be moved by their “inner light” to stand and offer thoughts, or poems or songs, they find to be beneficial to the attending community. After that, it’s back to the silent treatment until the Meeting concludes. If you’ve managed to read this far, you’d know I’d be toast at these Meetings. If you’ve heard about Reddish, and Hunter, being a bit reserved for the types of players pro teams tend to gravitate toward, I may suggest that weeks after weeks of mandatory Friends’ Meetings will do that to you. The incoming first-rounders are mistaken by those not in the know as bearing some detrimental sense of passivity, of deference, of timidity that won’t fare well as the spotlight shines even brighter at this level. Schlenk was in the Warriors’ war room back in 2012, when Draymond Green fell into Golden State’s lap at Pick #35. He understands that there is room in this league for the more caustic, extroverted opinion machines like Green, when those teammates commit to improving their own game, conditioning, and leadership skills along the way. Travis was also in the draft room a year prior, when a decision to take the more reserved, withdrawn Klay Thompson at Pick #11 was at hand. Declining to pass up on either player was key to the bonanza of basketball excellence that would soon support the Warriors’ young, nifty-dribbling, sweet-shooting point guard star. Thompson, and the reigning NBA Finals MVP, could be categorized as the “strong, silent types” whose game occasionally makes all the noise anyone needs to hear. That “silent, with an emphasis on strong” characterization could very well be the future cases for both Hunter and Reddish, and perhaps 2018-19 All-Rookie selection Kevin Huerter, too. In Atlanta, for now, they can leave the jersey-tugging and flexing and crowd-rousing to 2019 All-Star candidates Trae Young and John Collins. If Reddish read his press clippings and hogged the ball during his stay in Durham, maybe Zion Williamson and R.J. Barrett don’t get enough chances to shine as play-finishers and become Top 3 picks in the 2019 Draft. Maybe the trio of frosh doesn’t outlast Hunter’s eventual Natty winner, UVA, to emerge with the ACC conference title, and advance to within a single point of the Final Four. Cam routinely deferred, stepping forward only when called upon in critical moments, and his team won 32 games anyway. Now, instead of a 6’6”, 270-pound rim-rocking behemoth at center stage obscuring Reddish, the marquee in Atlanta is for a 6’2”, 180-pound sprite who absolutely craves finding creative ways to share the ball with talented guys like him. For the lottery rooks, their common off-court tutelage brings even more to the table for the young Hawks. Quakers are well-renowned for their structured consensus-building and mutual decision-making process. The underlying assumption is the sense of a common humanity, pulling toward “unity” rather than “unanimity” when there’s a need to reach a resolution. The “Quaker-based” consensus model produces team members who are well-versed in the practice of active listening, ensuring that every voice, including those of dissenters, is heard and valued equally in discussion. Adversity looms for all young teams in the pros as they look to make the rugged, slippery climb toward relevance and contention. Rough stretches of quarters, of whole games, of whole weeks, await. Especially eager to face the Hawks, in the early going, are teams loaded with veteran players and highly experienced staff. Teams like the Pistons, a squad that broke even (41-41) under coach Dwane Casey in 2018-19 and secured an 8-seed, one that returns its star talents and most of its starters despite a 4-game first-round bludgeoning at the hands of their division rival Bucks. Fervent in their belief they’ll need vets couched around Blake Griffin (out until November, hammy and sore knee) and Andre Drummond to better compete, Detroit’s biggest offseason additions were Derrick Rose, Markieff Morris, and soon-to-be fellow tricenarian Tim Frazier. On draft day, they acquired Kevin Porter and veteran Tony Snell from the Bucks, then cast off the 19-year-old prospect, Porter, for a trove of Cleveland’s future second-rounders and cash. With eight regular-rotation Pistons having at least five NBA seasons under their belts (almost nine, had they hung on to our old friend Joe), they are a team that can stash youngsters like Sekou Doumbouya, Bruce Brown, Svi Mykhailiuk and Khyri Thomas, pinning their development to the team’s long-term hopes rather than their immediate ones. Highly regarded NBA rookies and sophomores in repetitive lottery locales like, say, New York, or Dallas last season, will be looked upon to seize the Singular Superstar mantle, solve challenges mostly on their own, and turn things around in ways their predecessor peers could not. They often must swim upstream against veteran squads like the Pistons despite, not so much with, the residual talents of flawed teammates that put them in this situation in the first place. Conversely, in Atlanta, Hunter and Reddish can demonstrate leadership through listening and collaboration, contributing to an even-keeled locker room. They will have a stern yet relatable taskmaster in Pierce bending their ears, and a host of veterans, including the venerable Vince Carter, to help get them acclimated with all the off-court rigors and on-court tricks of the trade. Barely a couple months younger than the 22-year-old Collins, Hunter enters the league with a maturity and composure one normally would not expect of his newbie cohorts. For Hawks fans in search of something a lot more tangible in the near term, the rookies, including second-round center Bruno Fernando, step onto the court as the team’s best bets to make immediate impacts on the defensive end of the floor, the side where the Hawks found themselves most woefully inadequate in 2018-19 (28th in 2018-19 Defensive Rating, 24th after the All-Star Break, 22nd in final 15 games of the season; NBA-worst 20.9 opponent points-per-48 off TOs). The young veterans like Collins (5th-best in 2018-19 NBA for Roll-Man Defensive points per possession, min. 40 games played), Young and Alex Len will be expected to continue making defensive strides this season. But the first-year performers could be the rising tides that float all the Hawks’ boats. While both will start tonight, as Huerter’s minutes are restrained due to preseason recovery, whichever of Hunter or Reddish does not remain in Atlanta’s precocious starting five could be one of the strongest rookie candidates for Sixth Man of the Year since the days of Ben Gordon. Surrounded by a host of experienced veterans, including Turner, Bembry, Jabari Parker, Chandler Parsons, Allen Crabbe and Damian Jones, the rookie reserve is sure to have a featured play-making role while also charged with inducing stops on the defensive end. There’s no certainty that the Hawks’ plans will bear fruit immediately, or even this season, in the form of a formidable postseason contender. Yet the consumer confidence in this team’s long-term potential, carried over from the promising close of last season, has arguably never been higher entering an NBA season. Fan skepticism around an NBA team coming off a 29-53 campaign, conversely, has never been lower. If the playoff payoff begins to arrive in 2020, at State Farm Arena, there will be a whole lotta quakin’ going on, in the ATL and beyond. In the months and years to come, if Hunter and Reddish have much to do with a sudden basketball breakthrough, with teammates discovering and embracing their “inner light” as they reshape themselves into legitimate contention, Hawks fans will have many a Friend to be thankful for. Just remember, before you hug any Quakers in appreciation for their contributions, they had absolutely nothing to do with oatmeal or motor oil. Let’s Go Hawks! (and you too, Five Stripes!) ~lw3
  40. 19 points
    Considering we're 4-16 I don't think it has slowed down too much. The problem is that 90% of the discussion is the exact same argument over and over and over and over again.
  41. 19 points
    Moose at 5M >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>. Olynyk at 12.5M.
  42. 19 points
    This is a warning! We will not tolerate transphobia on this site. Al Horford made the decision to become Alice and much like we asked everyone to do when@kg01 made the same decision, we expect everyone to use the proper pronoun while refering to each as "her" and not "he". Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  43. 19 points
    Never has a technical ever been so worth it and felt so good. Surprised Alice didn't tear a titty when he got shoved. Bitch ass.
  44. 19 points
    I've previously said that I don't think Tim's FG% is sustainable but that it has been fantastic so far this season. Let me break it down a little with some praise both for his accomplishments that will be a challenge to sustain and for some that I hope signal improvements that will continue to pay dividends for THJr: #1 - Tim Is Taking the Ball to the Hole A Lot More (Sustainable improvement) According to basketball reference, Tim has increased his shots at the rim by roughly 50% this season. Tim's career average of shots taken from 0-3 feet from the basket was roughly 20.5% coming into this season. Last season was a career high of 22.9%. This season THJr has 30.4% of his shots at or near the rim. That is a fantastic improvement. Those are the most efficient shots in anyone's arsenal (other than Kyle Korver) and have been Tim's best shot at a 66% rate for his career coming into this season. He has gone a step further and not only taken many more shots from that range but has shot a blistering 77.4% from that distance. While he is unlikely to finish the season above 77% shooting in this range, he shot 70% from there last season and the mere fact that he has taken so many more shots from that range while sustaining (and improving) that efficiency will pay big dividends. #2 - Tim Is Getting to the Line Better than Ever The best part is there is even more sustainable upside in terms of his free throws. Not coincidently, as Tim as taken a huge increase of shots at the rim his free throw rate has also made a huge jump. Tim's FTA/36 last season was 2.3. This season he has more than doubled that to 4.9 FTA/36. That is huge. If he can sustain the increased attempts, it will vastly help his scoring efficiency. In addition to the long-term upside, there is also short-term upside. Tim is shooting a Josh Smith-like 65.6% from the line this season compared to his career average of over 81% (with almost 90% last season). Those extra trips to the line will continue to drop points at a high rate of efficiency regardless but his FT shooting should regress to the mean in a positive way which will give an even greater impact to the increased FTAs. #3 - Tim Has Cut The Long 2 Attempts Down Dramatically As Tim has increased his most efficient shots, he has also cut back on the worst shot in his repertoire - the long 2. For his career, Tim took 15% of his attempts as two point shots 16 or more feet from the basket. He has more than cut that number in half this year, taking a measly 6.9% of his attempts from that distance. The long 2 has been by far his worst shot this season clocking in at 28.6% from the field. That number is unsustainably low for him but his smart reduction in attempts from this distance has mitigated the damage from that shooting and replacing those shots with ones close to the basket has resulted in a huge lift in efficiency. #4 - Tim Has Shot Out of His Mind from 2pt Range This one I question as sustainable but give Timmy props. Tim historically has shot 34% of his attempts from 2pt range shy of 16 feet. This season he has shot over 40% from that distance. He is shooting career highs from 0-3 feet, 3-10 feet, and 10-16 feet. Not only career high but killing it shooting 77%, 50% and 67% from these distances (previous career averages are 66%, 25% and 36% respectively). I don't think the massive improvements in the 3-16 foot distance is sustainable but a more modest improvement could be sustainable and would mean very nice things for Tim's present and future. #5 - Tim's Defense Continues to Improve You can see on the floor and it is reflected in the numbers with career highs in DRtg, DWS/48, FG% allowed, OPP PER and pretty much any defensive metric you want to use. The improvement in defense is absolutely a sustainable part of the evolution of his game. He was starting from the point of one of the worst defenders in the league and while not someone you'd use as a stopper against a team's best scorers, he is more than holding his own against his bench counterparts this season. The hard work in the gym this summer and the development he put in last season continues to pay off. In Summary I'm not going into any real criticisms of Tim's game in this post (you can find those elsewhere and I still believe them) but as the guy who was most disillusioned by THJr on this site, I felt it appropriate that I give him praise for some of the improvements we have seen so far this year. My message is that we have seen sustainable improvements in shot selection and to some degree of the very improved shot accuracy he has displayed on offense and the defensive success is a matter of effort and focus that he can likewise continue. Getting that play consistently from him this season should turn him into a very valuable source of offense off the bench this year and maybe even put him in 6th man conversations if he continues at the level he has shown in the opening 11 games. He has even has further upside from here with his perimeter shooting (that could alternately offset regression to the mean from some of his crazy good early numbers). If he can keep anything like this up, I am expecting a guy that Bud can play with confidence in the playoffs this season. That would be a welcome sight for all Hawks fans and could be enough to swing a series with one of the big games he has shown several times already this year in a critical moment against a tough team. Keep it up Tim!
  45. 19 points
    “Wow! All that offseason conditioning worked wonders for you, Shelvin!” ATLANTA! The New Atlanta! Real Housewives of… Atlanta! Preachers of… Atlanta! Love and Hip Hop… Atlanta! Say Yes to the Dress… Atlanta! Atlanta Exes! Atlanta Plastic! Big Rich Atlanta! R&B Divas: Atlanta! Little Women… of Atlanta! Take a sampling of the world’s most exquisite, cattiest, most loquacious, and most wannabe-popular women. Mix in a few of the world’s most trifling, most conceited, most wannabe-respected men, mostly of similar age. Place them together in lavish estates, three-plus-star eateries, and hotspot ultra-lounges. Then, manufacture some of the tawdriest, most outlandish, most superfluous interpersonal dramas among them, for the world to see. By all means, be sure to include input from their most psychologically challenged relatives! Take all of that, set it in a backdrop of… oh, say, Cleveland… and count the number of people who care using Jason Pierre Paul’s digits. Real Housewives of Toronto? Yawn. R&B Divas of Detroit? What is this, the 60’s? Boston Exes? I mean, aren’t they all by now, really? Scrap that. Instead, change your settings to the bright lights and warm, southern charms of The ATL. Now, sit back and watch as the eyeballs pop, watch social media platforms get set ablaze as viewers take sides with your characters, watch bloggers cover their mortgage payments by reviewing each salacious plotline of every episode, and watch ad revenues show up to your house in briefcases. Throw in fully-scripted shows like The Walking Dead (nice try, Fear The Walking Dead, but Hollywood zombies are a bore), feature a T.I. here, and a Tamar there, and you’ve got yourself a honeypot of diehard viewer demand. Taking just about anything remotely entertaining, and slapping “Atlanta” on the title, or placing Atlanta in the background, draws attention like no other city does these days. Not NYC, not Chicago, not even L.A. has drama for your mama quite like Atlanta does. On-air since 1968, the Real Hawks of Atlanta are kicking off the 2016-17 NBA campaign with a visit by the division rival Washington Wizards (7:30 PM Eastern, Fox Sports Southeast, 92.9 FM). Nearly five full decades in, the team has yet to find a recipe that best profits from their host market’s insatiable appetite for pro basketball. Back in the Hawks’ early days, this sleepy burg was merely the place where they filmed B-flicks like Sharky’s Machine: where else could you blast people out of skyscrapers and not trouble anybody below? But today, Atlanta has transformed into a truly glitzy, sprawling metropolis, and wherever the “Action!” is, it’s sure to draw the “Lights!” and the “Camera!” With the help of one media-savvy exec, the Hawks are beginning to understand how to surf the small-screen-media wave. Being victorious in the NBA remains the overriding objective. But if you’re not winning the whole shebang, at least figure out how to be entertaining. “Pokemon Go!” was the superheated craze of this summer. But the practice of capturing odd, random creatures from out of virtually anywhere and prepping them for titanic battles had already taken up new roots in Atlanta a few years before. For small-w wizard Mike Budenholzer to be pried away from his coaching incubator in the Alamo City, he needed to entrust two individuals. First, a general manager buddy who understood intricately how he operated and the type of hoop talents he desired. Second, on the court, Bud needed a monster. One that was tall, rangy, team-oriented, and athletic. And, as was the case for his boss in Texas, one young enough that they could conceivably, together, achieve their pinnacles of success and eventually ride off into the NBA sunset. The one he found in Atlanta already had a torn pec, and then tore another one, but eventually was refashioned into an annual All-Star, one that helped lug the Hawks kicking and screaming into the Eastern Conference finals for the first time ever. PLOT TWIST: What happens when said monster raises up and sulks off into the New England hinterlands, never to return? This was never something Budenholzer anticipated. Of course, The Notorious B.U.D. wasn’t expecting the GM pal tied to his hip to read The Best of Blanche Knott in a conference call with their bosses and get run out of town on a rail. And yet, he made the best of that situation, getting named Coach of the Year in the process, and now gets to call the shots as an executive himself. Bud never imagined that, in 2016, he’d be in front of a jury dealing with some BSDUI charge, thanks to a busted taillight from three years ago. But he came away from that trial smelling like a rose, and not just the Derrick variety. This coach has already demonstrated he knows how to bounce back when fate lobs a curveball. So, losing the two connections that made him want to leave a stable NBA environment and come to Atlanta isn’t going to deter him from his goals, now that he’s entrenched here. Manning the pivot throughout the Modern Playoffs Era of Hawks basketball was Al Horford, a name which roughly translates from Dominican to NBA-speak as “vapid, at best”. The All-Star center elected to depart from Atlanta and make himself appear interesting to the otherwise uninformed by donning Celtics green. Speaking of green, Horford’s longtime point guard, Jeff Teague, has long been more Bill Bixby and less Lou Ferrigno, and was shipped off to Indiana this summer for a first-round draftee. However, the exodus of these two postseason pillars has introduced new opportunities for the Hawks to widen their mass appeal. A homegrown big man who is as renowned for his defensive imprint and vertical leap as he is his teased for his atrocious free throw shooting? You’ll excuse Atlanta fans if they feel like they’ve maybe been down this path before. But Dwight Howard is a different beast. Especially this particular edition of Dwight Howard. He’s no longer deliberately chasing promises of rings, rigged slam-dunk contest titles, or MVP trophies, nor is he striving to live up to Superman-style expectations. As he approaches 31 years of age, his ticket to Springfield is just about printed and punched. But the Southwest Atlanta Christian Academy product has rekindled an affinity for his hometown in recent years, even if said town hasn’t returned the sentiments in kind. Howard recognizes the chance to win over Atlanta, and the larger NBA universe, lifting his Q-Score to levels not seen since he began charting Shaq’s path to NBA glory by guiding Orlando to The Finals. It was certainly a glorious time in the Magic Kingdom for Howard, in the days before his ill-fated insistence on joining forces with Kobe in Tinseltown derailed him and ushered the term “Dwightmare” into the public consciousness. It will take more than his notoriously saccharine smile to turn perceptions around, something Dwight recognizes. He’s out to prove he hasn’t lost a significant step, is willing to run the floor, is unselfish, and remains willing to work on his game for his team’s betterment. Escaping from L.A., Dwight met privately with Budenholzer, then the new Hawks coach in the summer of 2013, before settling on H-Town. Howard came away impressed, but unenthused. Since then, he has witnessed firsthand what talent whisperer Budenholzer and the Hawks’ capable staff has done in recent years with not just Horford, but also once-lukewarm prospects like Paul Millsap, DeMarre Carroll, Teague, Dennis Schröder, and Kent Bazemore, as well as glue-factory-bound vets like Kyle Korver and Thabo Sefolosha. Suffice to say, he likes what he sees. Once Dwight brings his motivated, inspired play to the game, it will show up on the floor. Fans should grow to appreciate a defensive team effort that doesn’t get Al-ligator-armed once it’s time to secure the defensive rebound and terminate opposing possessions. Despite the natural downturn to his formerly annual All-NBA career, Howard enters this season ranking first among all active players with a 29.1 D-Reb%., tops in total rebounds per game, and second in blocks per game. Last season, in Houston, there was a virtual black hole situated where the power forward spot was supposed to be, next to Howard. This season, he has Millsap, an Eastern Conference All-Star in the past three seasons whose own defensive efficiency peaked after he surpassed age 30. Together, a well-conditioned tandem of Millsap and Howard can take “one-and-done” defensive basketball to unforeseen heights. In both L.A. and Houston, Howard found himself overcompensating for a high-scoring star teammate that was too often spaced out (and not in a good way) when it was their defensive responsibility to keep opponents in check. Here, Dwight has players in the backcourt, and on the wings, that aren’t dropping 30 PPG anytime soon, but are willing to put in the effort to D-up their assignments. Especially in L.A., he had to deal with coaches that didn’t have his best interests at heart, save for big-man assistant Darvin Ham. Now in Atlanta, Ham sits right beside Budenholzer in that Torch Red-hot lead-assistant’s chair. In Atlanta, Howard won’t be left feeling like a Beaver where everyone seems willing to Leave It to him. Here, he can again be that toothy franchise face, but without having to carry undue weight and excess baggage. Coach Bud will see to that. “The factor was the coach, and the city,” Howard explained to Sekou Smith, Lang Whitaker and the intown NBATV guys a couple weeks ago while munching together at Mrs. Winner’s (yay, it’s back!) in nearby hood-burb East Point. “This is the guy I want coaching me.” Much further north, the lamestream national media is suddenly chomping at the bit to lionize Horford in the same way they fall all over one another for the exploits and soundbytes of diminutive over-achiever Isaiah Thomas. The ability to be transformed in the public eye from NBA afterthought to The Chief ver. 2.0 was certainly appealing to the Son of Tito. Still, the heat of the summer might have caused Al’s memory to melt, forgetting his 2015 playoff series against his new team. Because it was Dennis Schröder who came off the bench to serve Thomas a taste of his own trolling, who made the crucial plays on both ends of the floor to finish off the series, who spoiled what was touted as Losing Isaiah’s coming-out party, who left Boston’s self-made star feeling some kind of way after the final buzzer sounded on the mediocre season of the Sell-Tix. Instead of selling more playoff tickets at the Gahden, Thomas found himself selling wolf tickets, to Schröder. Have fun with that, Alfredo! Schröder’s late-season emergence allowed Hawks fans to reminisce over the days when Teague rose from the end of the bench to dance toe-to-toe in the playoffs with former wonderboy Rose. Now, it’s Dennis, bursting at the seams with promise as-yet-unfulfilled, who enters this season as the top-dog among Atlanta’s ballhandlers. Even better, he knows he’s about to get paid handsomely to come up like Paper Boi, right here and nowhere else. Schröder’s gung-ho attitude is best displayed by his maddening forays into the paint, where he can exploit his quickness to occasionally devastating effect. Teague certainly earned his All-Star mettle here in Atlanta. But whereas Jeff’s lasting image as a Hawk is The Blown Uncontested Layup, Dennis is known around town by a singular catchphrase: “GOT HEEM!”. His preseason connections on lob plays with Howard (I have dibs on the phrase “Dunke Schoen”) have certainly borne promise, and we’re likely to see this play more routinely than we did ever from the Teague-Horford combo. As was the case for Teague, the acclimation to the gold-coiffed 22-year-old Schröder starting full-time is bound to have its share of missteps along the way. More turnovers under higher-quality defensive pressure, misfired passes out of the paint, occasionally lackluster defensive effort. But as Teague exemplified in his latter seasons, to reach full Potential, you have to endure the Po’ part. Nothing says, “through the slings and arrows, we trust you”, quite like, “Guess what? Malcolm Delaney is your backup.” Coach Bud and the Hawks are convinced it will be worth going through more growing pains with Schröder, whose 36.1 assist percentage last season ranked 10th in the league and eclipsed Teague’s 34.4. Dennis is a privateer who is learning how to become Budenholzer’s main floor general. There will be no training wheels, though, to start this season. Schröder will get to go eye-to-eye tonight with The Best Point Guard in the East, a player who new Wizards coach Scott Brooks suggests is “as fast as anybody in this league, probably in the history (of the NBA).” While working through offseason rehab, All-Star point guard John Wall has had to tapdance around the perceptions of strained relationships between he and shooting guard Bradley Beal. Once touted collectively, including by themselves, as The Best Backcourt in the East, Wall & Beal have had to watch from afar as tandems like Teague & Korver, Irving & Shumpert, Hill & Stephenson, and Lowry & DeRozan, earned trips to the Eastern Conference Finals. They’ve had to watch up close as other teams won the Southeast Division, and as rival teams like the Hawks and Pacers rolled through D.C. while advancing in the playoffs. Somehow, the team with the world’s fastest baller always winds up a split-second too late, one productive play short, a few wins behind when it counts. Injuries have long hampered this pair’s development, but so, perhaps, has their coaching staff, and their headstrong interpersonal relationship. To turn things around and make NBA fans believe again, they must find each other more often on the floor to complete plays (Beal insists passing is a part of his arsenal now), and find some sort of kinship after the buzzer. Mutual disappointment could become a bonding factor. You want to build a team around lottery picks? Tonight, we present to you mid-tiered first-rounder Schröder, and second-rounders Korver, Kent Bazemore, and Millsap, tipping off versus Wall, Beal, and Otto Porter. The latter three were all plucked by the Wizards among the first three selections in their respective NBA Drafts. Three seasons now under their collective belts, the lotto trio has yet to surpass 46 wins, or reach the NBA’s Final Four. Washington GM (still!) Ernie Grunfeld cashed in mid-level first-round picks to round out the starting unit with center Marcin Gortat in 2013, and power forward Markieff Morris this past winter. Yet even that constellation was insufficient to return to the playoffs. Washington faced the sobering reality this summer that, no, hiring Kevin Durant’s high school towel boy plus his former coach in OKC was not going to endear him any more to his home-area NBA team. But at least they got free agent big man and former Pacer Ian Mahinmi, who is ready to… oh, wait, he’s out for another month with a meniscus tear. The Hawks have benefitted from players who make “turning the corner” look as easy as traversing around the Washington Monument. Meanwhile, the Zards have been, and remain, loaded with youngsters who have yet to fulfill their once-hyped promise (add in momentary Hawk Kelly Oubre, and Tim Hardaway’s former collegiate co-star Trey Burke to that mix), with a few reclamation projects sprinkled in for good measure (Morris, Andrew Nicholson, Jason Smith). Even without the KD2DC gamble paying off, they’re a bit hamstrung financially, already top 10 in salaries and primed to pay their current core even more guaranteed salary in the coming year. They’re relying heavily on stability and organic, internal growth to save the day, and they hope that Brooks is the taskmaster who can help them pull through. Until they start winning games, consistently, they have one division rival to emulate. A winning brand (regular season, anyway) through internal development, without blockbuster deals or big-splash free agent hires, has been the theme in this town for quite some time. The official brand for the franchise, though, is “True to Atlanta.” Hawk draftees Horford and Teague stayed True to Atlanta in every game, right up until the moment it was time to shed their jerseys and head home. As for the players that remain? Schröder, an enterprising fellow, opened a hookah lounge in Buckhead. Sefolosha followed suit this summer with a luxury sneaker shop up the street. Bazemore rebuffed offers from desperate middling teams and stayed put, making a nonprofit bonanza out of his summer hanging around town. Korver (with K-baby #3 on the way in another week or two) and Millsap understand as professionals that nothing’s guaranteed, especially in this brave new NBA world of free-flowing cash. But these veterans have repeatedly expressed appreciation for the Hawks staff and a desire to grow DNP-OLD and maybe even retire here. Add to that group ATLien Dwight, who has had as much of an offseason presence in his hometown as any player that was paid to be here during his time in the league. Hawks fans have never had an assemblage of players who could hold up a “True To Atlanta” banner, and genuinely mean it. This is a daffier collection of players than we’ve seen in seasons past as well. With the Jolly Brown Giant now in the fold, the Funny Farm will be on display quite a bit. Bazemore, emoji pioneer Mike Scott, and Schröder are all-in on the Baze Gaze stuff. Mike Muscala is always ready for a good beatbox battle, while I think Howard has finally given up on planking. It will be fun to watch this cast of characters engage their dour-faced coach, and deadpan guys like Millsap and jack-in-the-box rookie Taurean Prince. Need a big foreign dude still sorting out American culture for comic relief? Edy Tavares is your guy. Further, no one on earth loves the Hairdo Game more than Atlantans, and no team in the league brings more to that table than the Hawks. Fros, dyes, braids, man-buns: what’ll ya have? A caveat, though: all the fun, frolicking, and pageantry works best when you’re winning games. Millsap, Korver, Kris Humphries and Sefolosha are the Fun Police, around to help keep the comics in-check when needed. But there’s always the possibility that bad strings of losses will turn the goofy laugh track into “womp-womp” around the locker room. If you’ve watched any kind of show with “Atlanta” on the name, even that’s good news. Comedy can be fun, but Drama sells! Which way this thing goes will depend a lot on Atlanta’s perimeter production. No team in the NBA came close to the 2015-16 Hawks in terms of creating open perimeter jumpshots. Well over a quarter of their overall shots were wide-open (no defender within six feet at the time of the shot), a league-high and a testament to the quality strategizing of the coaching staff. Problem was, much like k.d. lang, the Hawks on the floor rarely capitalized. They created nearly four more wide-open three-point attempts per game than the mighty Warriors. Yet, by hitting them at a pitiful 35.3 3FG% clip (26th in NBA), they wound up selling themselves short, making just 0.2 more baskets per game from downtown than Golden State. The departed Teague led the team in overall three-point accuracy with a career-best 40.0% mark, while Horford just began extending his own range before bailing for the exits. While he was no J-Smoove, converting leading scorer Millsap into more of a stretch-four was often a stretch of the imagination (31.9 3FG%). The Hawks occasionally turned last season to Scott, whose on-ball defensive acumen and perimeter shooting (career-high 39.2 3FG%) improved at the right time. Alas, Scott (out today, anyway, with mild knee soreness) has one external fire to stamp out before he can be relied upon as a steady rotation member. The good news is, Korver (6th among active NBAers in eFG%, while Howard ranks 3rd; 39.8 3FG%, lowest since 2008-09) has enjoyed a full summer regimen to get his conditioning back up to speed, after the 2015 playoff injury by Dellavedoveonya slowed Kyle’s roll. It’s a similar deal for Sefolosha as well. As for Schröder, Bazemore, Millsap, and Hardaway, when it comes to perimeter shooting accuracy, there’s hardly any way to go but up. The early preseason returns were not promising (team 31.4 3FG%, 24th in NBA) in this regard. But while sorting out the whole iron-unkind thing from three-point territory, the team is building its early offensive identity as one that will pound away at their opponent’s interior (NBA-high 42.3 preseason paint PPG), on the strength of sound passing (NBA-highs of 19.2 preseason assists per 100 possessions, 70.5% of baskets assisted). Meanwhile, Atlanta aims to make life miserable for their foes not only inside (NBA-low 34.9 preseason opponent paint PPG), but also around the arc (NBA-low preseason 27.4 opponent 3FG%). Backup shooting guard Marcus Thornton was the last regular season opponent to nail 5 triples in a game versus the Hawks, matching Korver’s 5-for-10 output in a losing effort back in March. Thornton will try to help Beal boost the Wizards offense tonight from the outside... if he can get good looks. Preseason opponents managed just a 19.6 offensive rebounding percentage (4th-lowest in NBA), a far cry from the 25.4 O-Reb% (5th-highest in NBA) Hawks opponents enjoyed in 2015-16. Illustrating how little help Dwight had around him, the Rockets were the worst in this category last season (27.2 opponent O-Reb%). Howard and the Hawks can make each other measurably better. For what it’s worth, the Wizards were dead-last in the league in second-chance points in 2015-16 (10.2 PPG, eight fewer total points than Atlanta), and there’s little reason to suspect that should change tonight. Howard is not as nimble running the floor as his Atlanta predecessor, and is much more likely to diverge from Budball by going after a few easy putbacks. That means it’s incumbent upon Atlanta’s wings and forwards to get back in transition and help the guards stem opponent runouts. The speedy Wall, pushing the ball up the floor for the Wizards, should provide a good test for the Hawks’ transition defense. Like the Hawks, the Wizards are also going the Euro-ball route to secure a backup point guard. A 2012 Draft-and-stash Czech, Tomas Satoransky is getting his first taste of full-time NBA ball, and Brooks is fascinated by the 6-foot-7 guard’s ability to play three positions. As with the intrigue of the season-opening Wall-Schröder matchup, Satoransky against his fellow Euroleague standout Delaney should be worth watching. There’s not exactly a Murderers’ Row of NBA opponents leading up to the Hawks’ November 8 tilt in Cleveland, home of the reigning NBA champions. Treat it more like an Aggravated Assailants’ Row. After these Wizards, there’s an afternoon affair in Philly this weekend. Then it’s Boogie and the Cousinnaires and the Lakers back here, followed by a trip to D.C. and a quick return home to face those Rockets on back-to-back nights. After the Cavs, it’s Bulls, Sixers, heat, Bucks, Hornets, Knicks, Pelicans. A few back-to-backs are in this early mix, but it’s a schedule versus moderate competition that the Hawks can use to either find their bearings early, or alternatively stumble out of the gate. Despite a modest 48 victories, we watched in horror last season as fully capable Hawks teams blew far too many contests to teams competing without their star players, without their head coaches, without much of anything worth speaking of. The coup de grace arrived in the regular season finale, when our Fine Feathered Friends punted away the opportunity to maintain its clutch on the Southeast Division banner and claim an infinitely more valuable higher playoff seed. They did that in Washington, against the Wizards’ B-Team and C-Team, against the likes of Ramon Sessions, Jared Dudley, Nene, and Garrett Temple, all of whom are now scattered about in new basketball locales. That victory granted the Wizards left behind renewed hope for the future that lay ahead. Especially with Teague, Horford, and their nonchalant dispositions out of town, these 2016-17 Hawks won’t be in such a gifting mood. This roster may not win more games or advance further than their predecessors have. But leave no doubt, this group cares about winning, for this organization and this city, as much as any we’ve seen since at least the days of the Atlanta Air Force. That collective “True to Atlanta” consciousness, with winning basketball, would create great storylines as the season wears on. Even on the other hand, with more losing than we’ve grown accustomed to, the emotional effect would create fascinating sideline drama. Whichever way things blow, there’s a new reality dawning in the ATL, and these Real Hawks of Atlanta are destined to create Must See TV. Even better yet… Must See Live! Let’s Go Hawks! ~lw3 View full record
  46. 19 points
    Bud was just named coach of the year!!! Well deserved Our future is bright so long as we can keep him here
  47. 19 points
    On a more serious note, Dolfan donates a ton of time to this site and people need to show him the courtesy of not just running roughshod over the parameters that he gives. You just add work to his already loaded plate and basically give him the finger by repeatedly posting threads in the wrong place, etc. Not that everyone does this all the time, but it has been running rampant lately. Give him some help by putting a few second thought in before jumping into a hypothetical trade or the 5th thread on the same topic on the homecourt board.
  48. 19 points
    This is the first time since I registered on HS that I haven't felt like we could complain about our HC. This guy has done more with so much less than Woody or Drew ever had. Outside of Teague and Milsap Indiana just got beat by a bunch of role players.
  49. 19 points
    The all star game is the last game I would use to judge a player
  50. 19 points
    It's been a while since I did a Wretched Special...