Now that the Hawks have completed their western road trip let's take a look back at their performance. The trip was filled with highs and lows but in the end the good and the bad were somewhat balanced on the libra scale.
The offense is running smoothly and not Smoovely, no Hawks fan has yet to scream "NO" this season and Atlanta has scored more than 100 points in every game. J-Smoove's replacement Paul Killsap was killing the opposition and filling the stat sheet like Josh Smith averaging more than 22 points 9 rebounds 4 assists and 2 steals. Al Horford was also solid and his partnership with Millsap is working well in the frontcourt. In the backcourt Jeff teague did a good job running the offense and Korver did what Korver does.
As good as the offense was, the defense was just as bad. Atlanta gave up 100 or more points in every game and allowed the opposition to shoot better than 40 percent behind the 3 point line, the Lakers, Kings and Nuggets made a combined 33 threes on 81 attempts. Part of the bad defensive numbers is because of the fast pace coach Bud favors but there is a lot of room for improvement.
Free throws ! Atlanta did a good job getting to the line but only converted at a 64 percent rate compared to the opposition's 82 percent. The biggest culprit was Paul Killsap, as much as he was killing the opposition from the floor Millsap was killing the Hawks at the free throw line shooting a Josh Smith-esque 66% going 18 for 27, that's only 8 percentage points better than he shot from the floor where he made 23 of 39 shots for 58 percent. Atlanta took 9 more free throws but got outscored by 5 points at the line, granted home teams usually shoot better at the line than road teams but 64% is too low.
Offense : 7/10
I wanted to give them an 8 but the missed free throws cost them a point.
Defense : 4/10
That's what you get for giving up 100+ points in 3 straight games.
Overall : 5.5/10
The Hawks outscored the opposition by 1 point despite loosing 2 games, a couple more free throws and they could have easily gone 3-0. For the sake of comparing Atlanta to San Antonio, the Hawks and Spurs have played two common opponents in the Lakers and Nuggets where the Spurs went 2-0 and the Hawks 0-2. The Magic are coming to the highlights factory on Saturday and hopefully the highlights won't be open threes for them and missed free throws for us. Thanksgiving is around the corner so it's time to put our swiss cheese defense away and replace it with a turkey bone, as coach Bud is getting wiser with every game he should find a solution sooner rather than later.