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Preview and Game Thread #4: Atlanta Hawks vs Cleveland Cavaliers

Atlanta Hawks 10-11 Season Game #4



Quicken Loans Arena
November 2, 2010, 7:00 PM
Sports South, 99X FM, Pre and Post Game Show 680 The Fan, NBA Audio League Pass
Probable starters:
Mike Bibby PG Ramon Sessions
Joe Johnson SG Anthony Parker
Marvin Williams SF Jamario Moon
Josh Smith PF J.J. Hickson
Al Horford C Anderson Varejao

Hawks Injuries: Pape Sy (back), Mo Evans (knee) are out

Cavaliers Injuries: Antawn Jamison (knee) questionable Mo Williams (groin) is probable

SB Nation Cavs Blog: Fear the Sword

Game Preview:

The Hawks come into the game as the last remaining unbeaten team in the Eastern Conference. This is the second time in the last three seasons that the Hawks have began the season by winning their first three games. They also come into tonight's matchup with Cleveland riding a two game winning streak on the road which equals the high from last season. Any chance the Hawks have of bettering last seasons 53 wins will have to be by being a better road team. It is early but these games still count and it is big to check them off now.

Milestone Watch: Joe Johnson needs four assists to move past Lou Hudson and into 10th place on the Hawks all time list.

The Cavaliers come in at 1-2 having blown a 14 point half time lead against Sacramento last time out. This team no longer has LeBron but it does get back Mo Williams tonight for the first time this season. Antawn Jamison is questionable with a sore knee so the Hawks may not have to deal with him tonight.

Keys to the Game

Rebound, Rebound, Rebound. The Hawks need to control the boards against some athletic bigs in Anderson Varejao and J.J. Hickson. Al Horford and Josh Smith both have better offensive games but will be challenged on the defensive glass particularly by Varajao. Transition defense will also be key as it always is with the Hawks, getting back first and then rotating out to shooters should be a priority.

Joe Johnson should provide one heck of a problem for the Cavs tonight as Anthony Parker will most likely have a tough time matching up with him. Getting into the motion offense early and into a rhythm while keeping the turnovers down should give the Hawks a chance to come away with another road win.

Go Hawks!