Atlanta Hawks 99, Portland Trail Blazers 95 or see photo

boxscore

recap

First off, no reason for the Hawks to win this game. No reason except Joe Johnson decided to prove me wrong and go shot for shot with Brandon Roy and it worked because Josh Smith jumped as high as he could as much as he could and wore Velcro gloves in the meantime.

Seriously, how did the Hawks just win? That was an NBA haters delight. If I did not know the Hawks and Blazers were trying, I would agree. It was as if the fourth quarter was all that mattered, and the Hawks mattered most. I don't watch Portland enough to know how bad they played but since I know they are good I will assume it was bad because the Hawks were horrible for three quarters. They were not missing bad shots, they were missing wide open shots. The turnovers were less bad passes and more assists for the other team. The whole thing was horrible, but more than bad , it was weird because the Hawks kept staying in reach and then, before anyone knew it, Josh and Joe started quoting the game thread and said "screw it, let's be special." And they were, and the defense followed suit.

Second off, and I mean this in the best and most complimentary possible way, screw you Rudy Fernandez. When is the last time someone scored nine points on buzzer beaters in a loss? Now that we are done playing the Blazers, I have a new play for them, and it involves counting down from three and giving Rudy the ball.

Third straight freaking off, the rebounding by the Hawks is filled with the passion of a 1,000 enraged bulls. Period. End of story. Where did it come from? I have no idea, but like alcohol, I don't care.

Where should we focus? Joe Johnson's horrendous performance for most of the game or his dominating performance for the part that mattered? Marvin Williams ineffectiveness on offense or his perfectly necessary effort on defense? Mike Woodson understanding match ups for most of the game or not fouling Greg Oden at the end of regulation? Jamal Crawford being awful or winning with Jamal being said awful? Josh Smith's awesomeness or his really, really good awesomeness?

I stand by being number one in the power rankings is bad, but for one night, in one win, look at the plus side, this Hawks team might be for real.

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