Straight to the point - our three things
1. Old Fashioned Whooping - That's what this is called. No need for an over analysis of the game other than to say - the elements that have won every game save the Pacers game (where any team worth their salt would have had us down by 20 in the first half) were in effect. In a game missing Marvin, Oden, and Martell, this was still looking like a game of mirror images. Roy vs. Johnson. Horford vs. Aldridge. Well, score one for the Hawks as they continue to mow down all teams led by players we should have selected. You can never be mad at a game where you win by 20 AND every single player on each team touches the court.
2. Mo Evans Starting Streak/Marvin out of the lineup - 6-0; 12-1...this is actually getting scary. Could the Marvin Super Sub Strategy gain any more momentum?
3. Schedule - Let's be clear about what happened today, while not taking anything away from the victory. The Blazers played on Friday night, then flew to Atlanta and had to not only get accustomed to Eastern Time, but also had to play a 1PM (read: 10AM PST) game. Not sure why it was scheduled as such, but we can thank the NBA schedule makers for helping us out with this hard fought victory.
Game Recap - Hawks 98, Blazers 80
Str8 Butter Award: Joe Johnson
Let's just go ahead and mark it down - if Joe gets 30 for the rest of the home stand, we'll rename this award JJ's Str8 Butter Award. Motivation has been granted.
* Evans - A solid effort once again. At the risk of sounding redundant, let's see if we can get some stirring afoot for Evans in the starting lineup no matter what Marvin's health is for the remainder of this year and during the playoffs.
* Smith - No quibbles over the early jump shots as it seems that JSmoove just has to do a heat check during every game to see if his jump shot is falling and since it invariably is probably not going to be raining - we can then focus on what he does well and that's stuff the box score. Gotta love the jams and the oop to Horford.
* Horford - Not really a great rebounding game for any of the Hawks, but who cares - we won by 20.
* Johnson - Let's just call this game 'where letting Joe Johnson go one on one on anyone' happens.
* Bibby - Good game from Mike on the offensive end. Probably too many minutes in a game that we controlled. Would have loved to see him get some rest in the second half.
* Murray - A poor shooting effort, but again - who really is trying to nitpick this?
* Pachulia - Not the same rebounding stats, but he came in with the energy that we need from our bench. Pachulia as bench energy leader sounds good.
* Law - Attack young man, attack...rather that put this on Woody - the challenge has to be levied to you, Acie. Make your coach see why you should be on the court. Anytime Mario West is getting more minutes than you - you should take that as a personal challenge. PLEASE
* West - Ok, now that we've seen a stint of Mario in the last few games, so let's go ahead and start to pick apart West's game. Energy - check, Defense - check, Offensive Rebounding - Check...what to do once you get an offensive rebound when open at 4-6 ft - No Check. Please spend some time shooting the 4-6 ft lay-in.
* Jones - Garbage minutes, but maybe he's ready for rotation minutes in the coming games.
* Gardner - Thank you...garbage minutes for you means shoot the rock and show Woody that you have a skill that should allow you minutes when we aren't shooting well. Now, maybe you are worse on defense than Bibby, but for right now - let the 3s fly, young fella.
* Morris - Garbage minutes in a victory should equate to at least one smile...just one.
* Hunter - Inactive
We have already praised Woodson's coaching over this home stand. We also would like to say that playing Mario West too much is just begging for criticism as soon as winning and losing can be tied to it. Just saying...
Str8 Talk Love
Sorry, but I couldn't attend. Look for more on Tuesday...
Currently 39-28. Sticking with 47-35 as my prediction for the season's final record. I just keep looking at the schedule with the Lakers, Spurs, home and home with Boston, Orlando, Dallas, and keep thinking that we have about 6-7 losses in there somewhere. Keep proving me wrong Hawks. We have no problem with eating crow on this one.
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