Tuesday, March 3, 2009


Listening to other broadcast teams (read: different from IBR and THHF) around the league is to hear the same opinions and takes on each of the Hawks players. Now, we know how it works---they buddy up with people from the visiting or host organ-i-zation or have someone do that for them---and blammo---instant information about the other team---that and the gameday media guide assembled by the under appreciated and overworked media relations team--that's right, fellas---the HHB has your back!

For the Hawks, the following takes are universal:

  • Joe Johnson is underrated AND a 3-time All-Star.
  • Al Horford is great---what a great young player (this will be replaced eventually by what a great veteran player he is).
  • The team has taken a step forward with Proven Veteran Point Guard Mike Bibby.
  • Ronald "Flip" Murray has been a great addition to the team.

There are others, but here is the one that has been most relevant lately:

  • Marvin Williams, while not being in the same class as Chris Paul and Deron Williams, has really begun to blossom.

Now, we're not saying these takes are incorrect---but it is funny to hear broadcast teams in the East and West with almost the exact same take on each player.

In Mustache Marvin's case, it's definitely true and then some. Every Hawk fan's worry about Williams previous to this season would be could he ever find a way to make an impact on a team--well, make that a positive impact.

Williams has done that and more---by using a blend of moves to the hoop, running the floor effectively, and expanding his range on his jump shot (Marvin's Jumper---Now with 30% more Range!). It is routinely stated now that he has hit more 3's this season than in his career combined prior to this season.

What's really special though is that he does it completely within the flow of the game--hardly ever forcing a shot he shouldn't take. His game high 28 points last night in the Hawks 98-89 handling of the home team Wizards was a portrait of his growth, complete with a very impressive Pick-6 (ok, 3) when Marvin stepped in front of a Wizards pass, intercepted, ran the floor, made the right move and got fouled and finished.

All of which makes the arguments that Peachtree Hoops, Hoopinion, and Str8talk have been posting about the Hawks late game decisions to isolate Joe Johnson and eliminate the many options the Hawks now have to deliver the late game daggers.

For the second night in a row, the Hawks have been extremely democratic and efficient, to the point where it seemed Joe Johnson made a conscious choice to get some shots up to get his points into the teens before the bout was finished. Still, Joe proved his wonderful ability to light this offensive fuse, evidenced by his own playmaking ability to the tune of a (shhh) whisper quiet 13 assists.

Yes, the Wizards are not good---a lineup with only Antawn Jamison to call notable and a (14-46) record is evidence to this opinion---but the Hawks fought off a late arrival (7am) and the emotional letdown of a hard fought, high attention game against the Cavs the night before to play the game the right way and win the game they should win, even on the road. After watching this same team lay an absolutely rotten egg at Philips against the Clippers, this should not be tossed aside.

Hot Coffee:

After watching Anderson Varejao, who is as bad a shooter as there is among players who get regular minutes in this league, hit a pair of ridiculous shots to help beat the Birds the night before, seeing Andre Blatche hit some off balance wonders made the HHB think that maybe someone on the Hawks had made the basketball gods take revenge on the team. Blatche started 4-4 in the first quarter, but fortunately the mojo couldn't continue the whole game, going 2-6 for remainder of the game.

We are loving it---because Al Horford has made himself a part of the offense. He still rushes some things and needs to be aware to pass out of the post lest he become Kevin Willis II, but it makes things even more open outside when Al can be a positive factor on the offensive end.

We made Caron Butler a key player for the game last night (Check our Twitter Hitters for our Key Players predictions)---and we don't mind saying we were right! Butler's hammy tightened up and couldn't play, making the Hawks job a lot easier on the defensive end. He is tough on the Hawks with his aggressive play---

The HHB is injured from patting themselves on the back---Ace bandages and other relevant thoughts are welcome in the Comments area.

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