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Preview and Game Thread #12: Miami Heat @ Atlanta Hawks

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Atlanta Hawks 09-10 season Game #12

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@ Atlanta-hawks_medium
7-3
9-2
Phillips Arena
Nov. 18th, 2009, 7:00 PM
Sport South, Hawks Radio Network, NBA Audio League Pass
Probable starters:
Mario Chalmers PG Mike Bibby
Dwyane Wade SG Joe Johnson
Quentin Richardson SF Marvin Williams
Michael Beasley
PF Josh Smith
Jermaine O'Neil C Al Horford

Hawks Injury Report: None

Heat Injury Report: None?

Blogging With the Enemy: Peninsula is Mightier

Predicted bane of the Hawks existence: Daequan Cook

Game Preview:

The Hawks were better than the Heat last year. That seven game series brought out the worst in Atlanta and led to some blowouts. It was a close series (in respect that it took seven games), but the Hawks were not lucky to win it. They had more fire power. In the worst of ways, it was why seven game series are played. Five games can allow lesser teams to sneak by, especially against ones that lack focus, but on the whole, seven games produce the rightful winner.

The Heat's great start has been a bit baffling to me. I will fully admit at the start of the season I could see Wade getting shut down for the year to ensure a good lottery position as easily as I could see Miami competing for the four seed. But at least over their first 10 games, they have proved me wrong. One reason is Dwyane Wade is awesome. And another is Jermaine O'Neal is not dead.

The last two games have been the first fuel to my fire with a near loss to the winless Nets and a blowout loss to the Thunder last night. I am perfectly willing to concede the Heat will out perform my low expectations for them, but it will still happen by way of Wade carrying the load almost complelty.

Don't get me wrong, D Wade can beat the Hawks in one game in any contest, but the facts are, the Heat were not as good as the Hawks last year, the Hawks are a better version of themselves this year, and this game is at home with Miami on a second game of a back to back.

We can call it a big game, and we should. This is a division rival coming off a seven game playoff series. It is main competition for a playoff spot, and plain and simple, Atlanta dislikes Dwayne Wade. We should want to win this game, and if we don't, I can already tell you to tip your hat to Mr. Wade on your way to throwing said hat at the Hawks' players for blowing a big time win.

Keys to the game:

  1. Keep Wade off the free throw line.
  2. Hand in Daequan Cook's face.
  3. The Hawks play into the reality that they are better at four positions on the floor, and only their best player is the odd man out.

Comment of the Blazers' game thread:

While I appreciate the six people who rec'd my post telling you to rec post, I refuse to award your non verbal sarcasm. So we have a three way tie. All garnered three rec's and a thumbs up.

"I heard Juan Howard posted up Moses."- Erihury
"A premature Woody if you will." - Mr. Sanchez
"Joe Johnson stars in Man of Fire, rated R." Duff_Man

Go Hawks!