With Jeff Teague, Joe Johnson, Jamal Crawford and now Mike Bibby the Hawks have a back court that can score in just about every way imaginable. Three point shots, runners, dunks. drives, spot ups, pull ups, layups. You want your guard to score a specific way, the Hawks have a player that is probably pretty good at doing it
It remains to be seen whether that right scorer will be on the court at the right time and allowed to take the right shot while surrounded by the right players to mask what is probably the wrong defensive capabilities.
As excited as I am about the Hawks quality of offensive player on the depth chart, Joe Johnson remains the only all around player among the four. Jamal Crawford may provide improvement on both ends of the floor and Teague may find the desire and skill to thrive as an all around player, but at the current state of their game, this Hawks back court at best enjoys defense in the same way that I enjoy getting a hair cut. I will do it every once in a while so people don't judge and ridicule me, but it is going to happen as little as possible.
So why did the Hawks make sign Mike Bibby?
The organization knows he cannot play defense. You do not just forget that fact when you pledge 18 million over three years. It would be like
tendering a qualifying offer to Mario West, it would be like spending almost 70 million on someone who cannot score like Ben Wallace, it would be dumb. I mean Kelly Dwyer actually references Bibby's "league-worst defense." It is not a disillusioned Hawks fan's reality. It is plain reality. Mike Bibby makes teams worse on defense. If you need good defense to win championships, the signing of Bibby seems like a status quo deal. A lets try to hold on to this second round loss team move.
So I ask again, why did the Hawks sign Mike Bibby to play for them until he is 35? The answer is Jeff Teague. Mike Bibby is not the future of the Hawks point guard situation, Jeff Teague is. The back court Rick Sund has compiled will be at least as good as last year. It may be better. But yes, with Mike Bibby as a starter, the the Hawks may not get out of the second round. Rajon Rondo or Mo Williams will take advantage of our little 36 minute defensive lapse at the point guard position.
But Jeff Teague will have the chance to develop his very large well of natural talent under Bibby who I can rip for six paragraphs and then say without feeling the tad embarrassed because it is undeniably true, is a man who knows how to win. He knew how to in college and if not for David Stern and the refs during one horrible game against the Lakers, may have known how to in Sacramento. Bibby is a professional and a leader who has anchored the Hawks into the expectation that they should make the playoffs every year. His weaknesses are so apparent I often forget how the team has gone from out of the playoffs race before his arrival to a seventh game against the eventual champion to home court advantage in the first round. The Hawks are better with Mike Bibby, and as he gets older, that will not always be the case with him on the court, but it may still be as it relates to him on the team.
He is a six million dollar tutor who makes your star player happy and can hit three pointers like some people hit free throws. That is not a bad deal.
The signing of Bibby does not make the Hawks back court great, but at least for one year, it does make it good. And at some point, you have to trust the players you draft will develop, and in that sense, Mike Bibby is the rare guy that can buy a team time, make the other Hawks feel confident, and bridge the position for the future.