Closing Out The Magic, Hawks Fandom And Lang Whitaker

ATLANTA, GA - APRIL 28: A fan hold up a neon green sign with the words "Kryptonite" written on it during Game Six of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals in the 2011 NBA Playoffs between the Atlanta Hawks and the Orlando Magic at Philips Arena on April 28, 2011 in Atlanta, Georgia. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

This is where I write about how happy I am to have been wrong. I was correct in predicting that the series against the Magic would end in six games however, I didn't have the Hawks winning. That is how it is with this team and these players sometimes. You never really are sure what to expect. My reasoning was the way Atlanta ended the season. I wasn't sure that a team as up and down as it was and that lost its last six games in rather dubious fashion could simply "flip the switch" and pull an upset in the first round. It is one thing to beat a team as a No. 1 or No. 2 seed but to actually take home court advantage from a lower seed is impressive in itself. I learned something from this series and I will remember it always. After all this is my team and it pained me to pick against them. 

Several years ago, I was just discovering the internet and all of the wonderful information that is placed at our finger tips. The Hawks have been my team since my youth and I credited them as the reason for my discovery of the game of basketball. Those that know me understand how much of my life has revolved around the game. I watched each and every night but I didn't follow the team the way I do now. At the time I had no idea what a beat writer was so basically I obtained all of my Hawks knowledge from the game broadcasts. The internet changed all of that. I soon discovered that you could find a lot of information out about your favorite team from many different sources. In my experience there was two voices that rang out louder than everyone else's when it came to the Hawks. One is none other than our own Jason Walker who as you all know very well has covered this franchise for several different outlets. It is a really big honor for me to be writing on the same website as Jason now. 

The other big voice belonged to Lang Whitaker who used to write at Hawks.com and now an editor at SLAM magazine in addition to many other projects. After the Hawks victory last night, Lang wrote what I consider to be an excellent article about his devotion to this Hawks franchise. I have to mention it because I consider this to be essential reading for anyone that is truly a fan of this franchise and has followed it through the years. 

I didn’t write about the Hawks because I was looking for attention; I did it because the Hawks are what I know. I grew up in Atlanta, watched Hawks games as a kid, went to Hawks games as a teenager. Even after I moved to New York, I watched every Hawks game I could get my eyes on. This was my team, these were my players.

This is much of the same way that I look at this currently. I didn't grow up in Atlanta but this is my team and I feel very lucky to be able to write about this franchise in as good a community as Peachtree Hoops. I don't write about this team for attention. I write about this team because I am a fan at heart. It is nice to know that someone as plugged in as Lang Whitaker to the NBA is still a Hawks fan at heart. 

You may very well be asking yourself what is the point of this post? Well the point is that this Hawks team isn't perfect. They may not win a championship anytime soon. They may make questionable personnel decisions but at the end of the day they are still my team and I am going to continue to write about them to critique their flaws and celebrate their victories. 

I didn't hear anyone but Jason Walker actually predict the Hawks to win this first round series against the Magic. None of the so called NBA experts gave the Hawks a chance. Even now many are predicting this second round series as to be little more than a formality. Are the Hawks capable of winning this series? Of course they are as anything can happen. Will they? Well that is a another question? On that note I will leave you with more of Lang's words. 

I don’t know if the Hawks are going to beat Chicago. I don’t expect them to, but then again, maybe it’s better to manage my expectations. Because with these Hawks, you really never know.

I don't know if they will win either but I will be watching, and that is the point. Isn't it? 

Go Hawks!

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