Got a pretty good collection today of news and notes today. We are going to start with a couple of pre-game items from before the game last night.
"He has shown he can knock down that shot consistently, so why not use it to his advantage?" Drew said. "Because they are going to go at him at the other end. They are going to put him in the post and bang him. ... He is not a reluctant shooter anymore. He knows that's his shot. He's comfortable taking that shot. And more than anything he's confident."
We are not shy with the Al Horford love around here and nor should we be. If you haven't read it, then click on the above link to Michael Cunningham's story about Horford and his improved shooting.
The above quote is from Alan Hahn's Newsday story and apparently it got a few Hawks fans thinking out loud about Carmelo Anthony. Being the great beat writer that he is, MC went and kicked over what rocks he could find on the situation. Rick Sund wouldn't comment and that shouldn't surprise anyone because he never comments on the subject of trade rumors.
In short guys I would love to see something substantial but in all likelihood the Hawks aren't in any of the Melo discussions. I am sure they called to see if there was anything they could get involved in as I am sure just about every team in the NBA did. Melo didn't name Atlanta as one of the teams he would sign an extension with and I don't know if the Hawks would be willing to part with the players that it would take to obtain him. Forget about any thoughts you have of Denver taking Joe Johnson because if they trade Melo then they want salary relief, draft picks, and a good young player.
"With everybody back, it seems that the flow is a little different. We just had no chemistry throughout the whole game."
They never looked comfortable or sure of what they were supposed to be doing on the offensive or defensive end of the floor. As far as the chemistry goes, well read my game recap.
"I just thought it was a total collapse of what we had been doing so well in the first three quarters," coach Larry Drew said. "We did not respond in the right way, which we had been doing for the most part of our success on the road."
The Hawks weren't exactly playing well in my opinion those first three quarters but were able to grind enough that it looked like they were going to win the game. That was before the wheels came off in the fourth quarter.
Al Horford scored one-third of Atlanta's 15 fourth quarter points. He took two of Atlanta's 22 fourth quarter shots. Josh Smith attempted more three-point shots in the fourth quarter than Al Horford attempted shots.
If that isn't the definition of a failed game plan then I don't know what is.
The Hawks had been moving the ball well enough to get good looks and got solid play inside from Al Horford for three quarters. But when things fell apart in the fourth quarter, the team started relying on Josh Smith jump-shots to get them back into the game. Predictably, that failed miserably.
Losses like this make you wish for a back to back.