Justin Holiday went undrafted in the 2011 NBA Draft. After a couple of seasons overseas, and a couple of stints in the D-League, Holiday finds himself on a Hawks roster that has All-Stars, and other players trying to find their place in the NBA. Holiday is also most notably fresh off of a championship season with the Golden State Warriors.
Sure, Justin Holiday didn't play a huge role in the Warriors' title run, hardly any role at all. That does not mean that the 3rd year pro has no value. At media day, Holiday said everything you could want a player to say, but in listening to him say these things, you could tell he meant them.
In his NBA career, Holiday has had very little playing time. In 2012-13 with the Philadelphia 76ers, he averaged just 15.8 minutes per game. In 2014-15 with the Golden State Warriors, Holiday averaged 11.1 minutes per game on a team loaded with wings. While he has never cracked over five points per game, Holiday is efficient when he does get time in a game. Per 36 minutes over his two NBA seasons, Holiday has averaged 13.3 points per game.
Those numbers mean something when he is added to an Atlanta Hawks team where he could see serious minutes, and even work his way into the starting lineup. Holiday believes in the Hawks and the talent they have this upcoming season. "We're good. So many pieces, so many guys can play on this team that I think it's not going to be much of any drop-off in first team, to second team, or whoever plays," Holiday said. "There's a lot of guys who like to work and like to be after it, and like to compete period, and that's on both ends of the floor. I'm really happy to be here and be a part of it."
Holiday feels that the depth of the Hawks could play into their advantage in a big way. "I think we're as deep as anybody else, really. And I guess speaking on what happened in Golden State, that's the reason why we did what we did last year, and that's another reason why this team here did what they did last year."
The depth, on top of the style of play, specifically team-oriented basketball, has Holiday believing that the sky is the limit for this Hawks team. "I think it's personally the best way to play. One, it keeps everyone feeling like they're involved, and it keeps everyone in that team mindset as well," Holiday said. "You know you're going to get the ball, but you're not really worrying about yourself, you're looking for the next guy so that type of basketball is not only something I think I'm able to adjust to coming from where I came, but it's the basketball I want to play and the type of player that I think I am. So, it does well for me overall."
Perhaps the most telling thing that he will be a great Hawk, was when Holiday said, "I think I defend multiple positions pretty well, obviously I think I can improve in that area, but I'm a guy that is going to compete, who will compete regardless of practice, game, I'm going to give you everything I have defensively, offensively, and I'm going to put the team before me, I think the team matters a lot more than myself and that's me being completely honest."
That's the type of guy that has made contributions to the Atlanta Hawks over the years, and based on what he spoke about at media day, and his potential, we could see some pretty good things out of Justin Holiday.