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Preview and Game Thread #7: Denver Nuggets @ Atlanta Hawks

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Atlanta Hawks 09-10 Season Game #7

Denver_nuggets_logo1_medium

@ Atlanta-hawks_medium
5-1
4-2
Philips Arena
Nov. 7th, 2009, 7:00 PM
Sports South, Hawks Radio Network, NBA Audio League Pass
Probable starters:
Chauncey Billups
PG Mike Bibby
Arron Afflalo SG Joe Johnson
Carmelo Anthony
SF Marvin Williams
Malik Allen
PF Josh Smith
Nene Hilario C Al Horford

Hawks Injury Report: None.

Nuggets Injury Report: Kenyon Martin is out with a leg contusion. Probably the most painful sounding injury that happens regularly in sports. JR Smith is suspended.

Blogging With the Enemy: Denver Stiffs

Predicted bane of the Hawks existence: Mr. Big Shot

Game Preview:

I have an inflated view of Chauncey Billups. So anytime he plays the Hawks, I am filled with fear and dread. So today has been a lovely Saturday of vivid images of Mr. Billups reigning threes and acting like it is no big deal.

But for normal people, this game represents a challenge for the Hawks that they could easily meet. The Hawks return to the comfort confines of Philips Arena. Both teams are coming off back to backs. But luckily for Atlanta, the Hawks did not play hard when they were in subsequently did not need to play for very long. And only one rebounding machine is available for the Nuggest since Kenyon Martin is out.

Denver can score, and they can score in bunches. Carmelo Anthony apparently grew tired of being really good over the summer and decided to become awesome. So far in this young season, it is tough to get a feel for how good or bad the Hawks are on defense. It will be interesting to see how much the Hawks' defense just rises to tougher competition, is unlucky playing against hot shooters, or represents a serious weakness for the team. Because if it is a plain, old weakness, expect the Nuggets to bounce back from their poor showing last night and put up a serious number.

Coming off last night, this game seems a bit hopeless. But as the guys at Denver Stiff's point out, the Nuggets had a very similar effort (against a better team but whatever). NBA teams lay eggs. The professional part of the game means you move on. No reasons the Hawks cannot pull out a win and continue there very acceptable start to the season.

On completely random note, for the basketball fan in all of us, I demand at least 6 minutes of Teague vs. Lawson.

Keys to the game:

  1. Make Melo settle for jumpers. It hurts George Karl's feelings and while Anthony can still fill it up out there, a game of jumpers eliminates many other ways he could hurt you.
  2. Don't let Nene own. I could see it happening, and it would be bad.
  3. Joe Johnson don't be selfish but be good. The Hawks best match up on the floor lies with the Hawks best player. Take advantage but take advantage smartly.

Go Hawks!