Quick Thought: Instant Replay of Atlanta's most recent win over the Bobcats: The Hawks started slow, the second team came in and sparked the team then rode Zaza Pachulia and his 16 rebounds to victory, 116-96.
As the headline indicates, there were two standouts on the hardwood tonight for the ATL. Zaza Pachulia hasn't been his usual shot-missing, own shot rebounding, free throw making self the last couple of games, but he came to glass against Charlotte, procuring 11 defensive rebounds to add to his usual proclivity to offensively rebound.
The other was the entire second unit, who not only gave the Hawks the kick in the pants they needed (along with the lead) in the second quarter, they withstood a mini-run by the Bobcats and finished the job, as the starters got some nap time as only Zaza played 22 1/2 minutes among the starting five.
Larry Drew took the starters out in each half and left them out, again save for Pachulia. Josh Smith and Joe Johnson were still good, and Jeff Teague had a nice follow up to his gangbusters roll over Detroit Friday night. Seeing the second unit stay out on the floor throughout the pivotal 29-13 second quarter was surprising but effective.
Due to the egalitarian approach to minutes tonight, a whopping eight Hawks scored in double digits. The last was Willie Green, who buried a jump shot in a Reggie Theus like knowledge of what he needed to join the unit in the game's final couple of minutes. Only Kirk Hinrich was among the rotation players who didn't make the cut.
The Hawks had a Steve Nash like shooting line percentage-wise, going 52/45/91 from the field, threes and free throw line, respectively.
Teague is definitely feeling himself right now, holding his hands up and calling for the ball to control the offense and whipping some dang fine passes to the hoop. But the best pass came from Jannero Pargo on a lob to Marvin Williams, who was definitely feeling it. Marvin cut the baseline and Pargo put it in the only place he could have to convert the play.
It was the first series sweep of the Bobcats evah with Saturday night's win. The Hawks have now completed a series sweep against every team in the current NBA.
Taking care of business is what the Hawks have done against Detroit and these two games against Charlotte. The schedule bumps a little now with the defensive feisty Boston team on the road and fighting for a division title, which would give the C's home court advantage in the first round, possibly against Atlanta. Then the Hawks play suddenly drama-filled Orlando, and unless the Hawks make the third seed and Orlando somehow stops their slide long enough to stay in the sixth slot, the best matchup for the Hawks in the first round may not happen.