As I completed my trip planning for both the inauguration and my annual ski trip (what recession - my unborn kids surely don't mind me spending their money...I'm just following the government's lead), I found that there was this game on, so I decided to watch it. A few things happened that I liked and a few that I disliked. Wanna hear it - here it go...
Note: All blogs over the next week will be spotty at best - Inauguration Rules The Roost, so if they are short or non-existent...check out real blog masters like Peachtree Hoops. (Bret, I'm sending you my 7.2 fans over the next week - let's talk about some profit sharing on the uptick in your ad rates over this period).
Game Recap - Hawks 97, Clippers 80
Things I Liked
1. And this is really 1, 2, and 3...Josh Smith made an effort to play INSIDE as an offensive and (somewhat) defensive player. The effort was worthy enough to ignore the occasional jump shot and trying to bring the ball up the court instead of the point guard. See, Josh - we don't ask much. Just play your offense from 15 ft in and I'm more than happy to ignore the things that are inexcusable when coupled with 20 ft jump shots we have at least 3-4 years of evidence that you are not proficient at. Have I mentioned before that Josh is my favorite Hawk since Dominique? If not, I'm saying it again. Not for you, but to convince myself that my favorite player is capable of being the dominant force I know he can be. The Clipper game was a start.
2. Acie Law IV in back to back games and making a small imprint. In these 5 minute spurts, I'm STILL trying to see what it is that makes this guy a semi-permanent fixture on the bench. He is not the savior, but he is a piece that I don't think will sink the ship if say...Mike Bibby gets hurt or traded or ...oh, signs somewhere else next year. Unless we think Claxton is the answer... (writing that messed up my day)
3. Joe Johnson making a semi-comeback from last night's game. Please find superstar Joe and re-connect him to the Hawks squad.
4. Flip Murray shooting well - I still can't understand his offensive strategy (which seems more like an exercise in ways for him to get up shots), but when it works - I don't complain (except in that in encourages it).
5. Random thought - I just love it when Coco comments on my blog. That doesn't have anything to do with this game. I just like dialoging with Coco (Bret too, but Bret doesn't have a cool name like Coco - oh, and he's not female).
Things I Didn't Liked
1. I just hate that I wrote Craig Claxton in this blog.
2. I also hate that Solomon Jones has not done much with his recent playing time, but I also disagree with Bret in this one respect - Solomon Jones is NOT the answer, but he could easily be useful over 5-10 minutes each game if he knew what he was in there to do, which is simply to play solid D (blocks and rebounds and not getting dunked on) to keep Horford, Pachulia, and Smith from foul trouble and to save their legs. I think you have to put some of his ineptness on the fact that he's not playing with those combinations and doesn't know what to do. Sorta like Acie - who is looking over his shoulder for the hook whether he does well or does poorly.
3. Speaking of Acie, what about that game said - Acie can't get any burn in the second half.
4. I've now officially gotten to the point that I get upset when Josh MAKES a jump shot b/c it will only encourage more. So, for all future non-under 5 second on shot clock jump shots by Josh - I will boo. For all under 5 second on shot clock jump shots, I will boo the person who passes him the ball if they had a reasonable alternative.
You can't reasonably expect me to raise the prediction based on a win over the Clippers. Maybe the Warriors, but not the Clippers.
Teague, Scott out tonight for Atlanta Hawks, Pero probable - It's your Saturday pre-game injury report! No word about potential resting from Coach Mike Budenholzer today, but the injury report is out and confirms ...
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