72 reasons to be excited about the Atlanta Hawks: #12 the Josh Smith blocked shot

No one is going to confuse Josh for a great on the ball defender. Ok, fine, people confuse him for that all the time.

But most everyone really can rally behind Josh Smith's help defense. The man is a helping fool. He is so good at help defense he sometimes seemingly lets his man beat him so he can play help defense on himself. Seriously.

For Josh Smith, one step beat is not beat and wide open layups are rarely open. He can make bad defense, no matter who is playing it, look perfectly fine because when he is healthy and putting forth effort the man is a terror in the paint. It is like he is defending freedom down there.

The blocks are good but Ronny Turiaf is a surprisingly great shot blocker. Josh Smith is different. He blocks shots that should not be blocked. He make amends with blocks. These are blocks that are equal parts reconciliation and skill, and blocks like that do more than keep shots from going in. They inspire teams. They get crowds on their feet, and maybe most importantly they energize the guy that plays off energy more than anyone else on the team, the very guy who swats them. These defensive plays are self-reconciling, and that is pretty rare on the basketball court.

And when the perfect storm hits, where energy, skill, and opportunity meet, Josh Smith does something like this, and bring the whole damn house down.

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