Nice Start for the Second Month
146-115 over the Raptors to start the month off is not a bad way to bring in December. The Raptors were de-clawed in the first half after a monstrous assault on the boards by the Hawks and were rendered extinct by awesome shooting throughout. Picking up where they started last month is a good sign that the Hawks are focused, and beating a bad team should be a regular occurrence at the Highlight Factory this year.
What’s on my mind:
13 wins and 5 losses to start off the season… What, you won’t take it? Winning more than 70 percent of your games and almost 90 percent at home is a statement to say the least and a marvelous beginning to a long campaign.
In the locker room the guys are happy but not satisfied. They are ready to put the first month behind them and move forward, 146 points is certainly moving forward. Joe Johnson likes how the Hawks are progressing and is very confidant , “I think we can win the east , we just need to be on the same page.” Marvin Williams believes as well, “if we can win three out of five every time we will be fine.”
On the Losing
Losing five games is acceptable in any month of play. The games that hurt were clearly to the Hornets without Chris Paul and a severely undermanned Pistons team without Tayshaun Prince, Rip Hamilton or Ben Gordon.
To a man, all of the guys are on the same page about the defeats. Joe Johnson feels that the team has only been beaten twice ( by the Lakers and the Magic), while Jamal Crawford felt the games against the Bobcats, Hornets, and Pistons were all games that got away from the team, but should have been won.
Joe would rather have bad losses early than late, I’d agree
What to Watch For
- A few games got away when that could have made a 12 win month a 14 win month. The Hawks should make an effort to minimize the giveaway games
- There have been times when the ball stops moving and the guys go one on one too much
- When in doubt go inside. There have been a few nights where the outside shot did nto fall, however Al Horford and Josh Smith on the inside should be the answer for that.
Mo Evans and Marvin Williams have had minutes and roles adjusted. Mo likes the resiliency of the team and is dealing with his new role. He knows he will have diminished minutes and will have to make the most of the looks he will get at the basket. Marvin understands that he will be guarding a premier player most of the time he is on the court and likes that he’s gotten out of his shooting funk.
Month number two already looks promising, it will be fun to see how the Hawks finish out the calendar year.