The game with the Bucks was snowed out in January (even though Milwaukee made it into town), but it was made-up yesterday, the day before Atlanta’s regularly scheduled game with Denver. This resulted in an extremely rare back-to-back home dates for Atlanta (saw a stat in the paper about when the last time it happened, can’t remember it off the top of my head, and not really in the mood to go looking for it). However, Atlanta, after a good smackdown of the Bucks on the front half, put up a donut in the back. Denver used a 29-22 spurt in the second quarter to gain the lead and coasted from there, winning 102-87. Zaza Pachulia led Atlanta in scoring with 19 points and 10 boards (even though he started off the bench). Denver, which is the NBA’s poster child for addition through subtraction, continued their hot streak following the trade of somebody who went to New York. Nene had 20, and JR. Smith had 15. Denver swept the season series. Atlanta started Jeff Teague at point guard, and he was consistent in his inconsistency. This wasn’t one of his best games. He logged only twenty minutes, and had more points than assists (4 versus 2). The leading playmaker was Al Horford with 6. Denver did an excellent job in harassing Atlanta shooters. The Hawks shot 41.5% from the floor and 26% from 3. The Nuggets shot over 50% from the floor and exactly 50% from three. One team shoots well, and the other doesn’t. That won’t translate into wins. Judging from the minutes, Larry Drew seemed to realize he has a problem with his guard play. Kirk Hinrich played barely half the minutes, while Jamal Crawford earned his six man minutes, but his stat line is oddly devoid of impressive numbers. The guard play has to get better for the Hawks to contend for that four slot in the playoffs (and home court). The homestand continues with a game against Miami on Friday. I just noticed that, because of the Bucks make-up game, Atlanta is playing 10 out of 11 straight contests at home. This would be a perfect time for them to move up, if it wasn’t for their difficulty in playing consistent. With 3 games left in the stretch they are 3-5. (2-5 if you count just the home). Come to think of it, maybe losing home court wouldn’t be such a bad idea.
Getting ready for the NCAA’s this weekend. I have an entire rant on the tourney (main point, if the NCAA could get away with putting every team in and organizing an incredible financial windfall, they would), but I’ll let it go. I just want my alma mater, the Vanderbilt Commodores, to actually survive the first round, something they haven’t been able to do for the last few seasons.
About the Author
Written by John Morgo
John Morgo lives in Atlanta, GA where he has done broadcast work for CNN, The Weather Channel and Encompass Digital Media. As of right now, he does Internet play-by-play for Georgia Perimeter College and Norcross High School. With GPC, he is the voice of the men's soccer, basketball, and baseball teams.