Monday, December 29, 2008

Ahhhh Yes---Ain't That Fresh?

Anticipation---It's Worth the Wait

While watching the latest installment of "We Own This Joint" authored by the Good Birds over the Bulls (129-117, you filthy animals!), the HHB made note that, unlike season past, we anticipate the beginning of every game this season. Good anticipation, like the kind just celebrated around Christmas. The stockings have been full of winningly good times this season.

In the Official HHB High Definition Viewing Center, the digital always makes sure we see the starting lineup for every game this season. It has brought a very confident feeling when we see the following:

F- Josh Smith (5th Year)
C- Al Horford (2nd Year)
F- Marvin Williams (4th Year)

and then

G-Joe Johnson (8th Year)
G-Mike Bibby (11th Year)

When we see this lineup, we think stability, growth, and most importantly winning. And this is just what Bird Watchers have been saying since Pete Babcock tore apart the last winning team in the franchises history ( if you need to look it up).

When Pete tried to rebuild with a young everything, it inevitably came crashing down on itself because none of the players knew how to win, to prepare, etc. So when Billy added Joe Johnson, and then last season bringing in the most important piece in the Veteran Point Guard in Bibby, it has all come together.

So now, when we see that lineup night after night, it brings us to a very happy place, one where we don't have to share our fruit cup.

Anyway, here are some other thoughts on the game against Chicago:

---Derrick Rose is indeed sick, and it moved Dominique to such verbal bouquets towards the rookie, that Nique admitted on the air that he was "all over him". This comment was so close to a known message board phrase that involves "riding someones (use private part euphemism here)" that we are sure that at some point this season, Nique is going to make a comment that makes someone at Fox uncomfortable, but makes us laugh hysterically. Remember, as Homer Simpson once mused, "It's funny, because it's true."

---After watching a (to put it nicely) loose effort from Josh Smith in the OKC game and a sloppy beginning from Smoove against Chicago, Smith got tangled up in one of "those" players, Andres Nocioni. And by tangled we mean frustrated and angered by the man's presence.

Nocioni is one of "those" players because they are the guy that riles you up and gets you out of your game with his flops, his energy, and his attitude. Dennis Rodman is the first ballot HOF on this list of "those" guys, with Bill Laimbeer wearing the blazer with him as well. Among current players, Nocioni and Leon Powe are a couple of quick ones that come to mind, and I am sure HHB readers can supply more.

If the intent was to disrupt Smith, it worked, because it completely derailed the laissez-faire attitude Smith had been coasting along on and got him on the attack for a barrage of drives to the basket that led to (8) field goals, (9) free throw attempts, and (5) assists.

And BTW, the Bulls were -15 with Mr. Nocioni on the floor, worst on the team. Thank you, Andres!

---Nobody is a bigger fan than the HHB when it comes to Al Horford, but we have also been a fair and balance observer when it comes to the Godfather's growth and development as a player. We still believe he is hasty and doesn't get tall enough around the basket, meaning that he doesn't go straight up when around the hoop, leaving his seven foot wingspan more like 6 foot and getting his shot contested and blocked too often.

We have also noted his hesitancy around the basket on defense, so as not to obtain too many fouls early in the game which finds him a seat. This has led to a flurry of uncontested shots around the basket and left Al a little submissive on the defensive end.

So it seemed in the second half, though the numbers don't prove it out so much statistically, that Zaza Pachulia was outplaying Al during the Chicago game. Woodson stuck with Zaza later in the fourth than normal, especially since Horford only had (2) fouls, and we felt he made the right move there. We also feel as if he didn't stick with Zaza too long either, bringing Horfy back in to close out the game.

--Oh, and Joe Johnson is the man, did we tell you that? Some of the quietest 41 points you'll ever see. And if he could ever get over his phobia about Technical Free Throws, he might have had a career high in this one.

Let's see---messed around against OKC (that's HHB for Triple-Double) and then popped the 40 cork on Chicago. It will be a felony if he is not an All-Star this season. He is still great, the Hawks are too, and there are few players as complete in the league as Johnson.

If Florida's Nick Calathes wants to know who he needs to emulate in the NBA to make it work for his career, he should sit down to watch Joe over and over again.

One last quote from the ATL AllStar:

"The guys were saying I should keep the ball and go to the free-throw line,'' Johnson said of the last minute, when the Bulls had to foul. "But all that mattered to me is that we won the game."

Hey Sacramento, thanks for the Bibby!

We said it at the time the deal was done last season, when BK stole Mike Bibby for Shelden Williams, that it was the point guard we had been waiting for.

So, how's Shelden Williams doing? Answer: Not much.

While we leave the advanced stat work to geniuses like Peachtree Hoops to manage, Shelden has posted a 16.85 PER, but the sample size is so ridiculously small, it can't be trusted. He is averaging 3.7 ppg and 9 MPG in the games that he has played, he has DNP'd 11 games this season.

The HHB is pulling for Shelden to have a good career in the NBA, though we knew from the first time we watched him in person that he was destined for backup duty in the NBA.

When you can't get off the bench behind Jason Thompson in SAC and can only get 6 minutes in a 108-63 blowout, it might be tough to score a second long term contract there, Shell.


The Official Baby of the HHB thinks everything from McDonald's is called a nug-get. Fries, burgers, whatever--it's all nug-gets.

Imagine his fun when he sees the real live version of the Nuggets in High-Def (hint, hint SportsSouth) as the Hawks try to lock down the remaining game of a very successful homestand (6-1 so far).

We have yet to see the Chauncey Billups led version of the Rocky Mountain Highs, but you can't argue with their success, being first in the NorthWest division and sporting a hefty 20-11 records, success generally attributed to the deal that brought Billups back to DEN for Allen Iverson (or hadn't you heard?).

Let's Go Hawks!

The HHB is still in shambles from the chaotic Christmas at the HHB Headquarters. Comments are always welcome in the Comments Sections--being sassy is always encouraged.

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