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Atlanta Hawks 100, Philadelphia 76ers 86 or efficient, boring basketball that I want to see again and again



Up to the Mike Bibby three pointer with a little over a minute to go, the Hawks had 42 possesions give or take an offensive rebound or two in the second half. They went inside at some point in all but 11 of those possessions. The predominant culprits in the 11 possessions where the ball stayed outside were Jamal Crawford and Joe Johnson. Joe was horribly ineffective when he refused to give the ball up getting fouled once, turning the ball over three times, and missing a jumper once. Luckily, Jamal was hitting his outside shot or getting fouled on this night, and like any night where that happens, Jamal forces you to love him. 

These little stats don't tell us much that we do not already know. Shockingly, Jamal and Joe like to shoot and over dribble sometimes. Still, tonight shows how efficient and easily the Hawks can operate with an actual inside out game. There was nothing flashy. No dominant performance. No one shot 90% from the field or scored at will. The Hawks played team basketball and team basketball only requires normal performance.It just takes one and half of the Hawks three main guards to hit jumpers and a willingness to pound the ball inside. Last night was so boring because it was not flashy. The Hawks out executed the Sixers. It might not sell tickets, but it wins games.

Jamal Crawford and Joe Johnson are great one on one players. If Jamal drives the ball, his ability to get to the line makes that style of play an asset to the team. Well spaced and executed isolation plays can be very effective with Joe Johnson. They guy has a knack to weave through most any defense. However, dribbling around without any offensive set is just bad basketball. It is bad basketball when they miss, it is bad when they make. The Hawks were either fouled or made a shot 20 out of 31 times the ball went inside at some point during the possession. The Hawks can play any number of styles. They can run and play half court. They can isolate and pick and roll. They can post up and drive the ball. The Hawks have the players to do all these things, but each of them is made more effective and efficient when the Hawks figure out a way to use more than one guy going down the court.

The Hawks are not a super star led team. The faster they realize they can be a super star team when they play with all five guys the better.

Victory Bullets

  • It felt like Dalembert blocked Josh Smith 15 times.
  • Why does Josh Smith not beat the defense down the floor every time? It makes the game surprisingly easy for him.
  • Jeff Teague actually played defense at the end of the second quarter and Willie Green still made the shot. It was like Teague trying actually helped the shot go in.
  • Once again, Teague looks perfectly capable in his short first half stint.
  • The way the PA announcer says Thaddeus Young almost made me ok with the fact that he scored so much.
  • When Mike Bibby is drilling jumpers, it makes you realize how much better this offense is and in a small way, why Jeff Teague does not get more minutes.
  • Joe Smith just put in the quietest 14 minutes you will ever see on a basketball court. I must have blacked out for each of his five rebounds.
  • If Marvin is going to continue to be a no show on offense, the least he can do is pull down nine boards. 
  • Can we stop running plays for Zaza? And I of course say that with the greatest of love and respect.
  • Back during the 72 reasons to get excited about the season, one of them was "Mike Bibby's jumper shot." Last night justified its place on the list.

Go Hawks!