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Posted By John Morgo On Jan 14 2012 @ 9:21 pm In Atlanta Hawks | No Comments
At some point during this compressed schedule, the players have to ask why on earth did they agreee to this?
One person who won’t have to worry about it is Al Horford. With a torn pectoral muscle, he’s out for about four months, or the entire regular season. I’ve always liked the grit Al provided, and that will be missed. Hawks officials haven’t (publicly) pushed the panic button, and official word from the team is that they’re not chasing a replacement. This will be an issue with everyone. That’s the combination of too much downtime immediately followed by not enough.
Besides Al, the Hawks are missing Tracy McGrady. T-Mac may be back later in the homestand. (Atlanta has the MLK game on Monday plus another home date on Wednesday). Marvin was out earlier in the week, but is in the lineup tonight against Minnesota. Atlanta’s been using Zaza in place of Al. He’s had 6 points, but down the stretch, it’s Radmanovic and Ivan Johnson who’ve had most of the minutes. If you checked in during halftime, you would’ve seen a big T-Wolf advantage, but in the second, Atlanta used a 26-2 run to take the lead in the fourth before settling in a back and forth rhythm. You have to like Atlanta’s resiliency. It wasn’t there last season.
I was typing this through the fourth quarter, and Atlanta has won it, 93-91. Ivan Johnson made two foul shots with five seconds left to give Atlanta a big victory. That’s the definition of stealing a game. They were down by 18 and still pulled it out. Joe Johnson had 25, and Jeff Teague added 20, but those 2 foul shots from Ivan (he ended with 10) saved it. For Minnesota, Kevin Love poured in 30 and Ricky Rubio had 16.
I like the word I used earlier. Resiliency. It’s a long season, and there will be plenty of games, and we will see if exhaustion comes about, but a resilient team shouldn’t be counted out.
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