The Atlanta Hawks return from the All-Star break began with a thud before last night’s emotional win in Boston. As a result, the Hawks are sliding in this week’s Power Rankings roundup.
The Hawks have been in a stupor since returning from the All-Star break, suffering heavy defeats at home (Miami) and away (Orlando) in games that Dennis Schroder either missed entirely (suspended for the Heat visit after returning to the team late from Europe) or was forced to come off the bench (losing his starting spot to Malcolm Delaney after showing up late for the team bus). Yet we can understand if you missed any of those developments while you continued to process the wild rumbles that Atlanta offered at least four future first-round picks to both Indiana and Chicago in an attempt to join the trade bidding for Paul George and Jimmy Butler. It sounds like we should expect #eventhehawks to be aggressive in the late-June trade market, too. Friday, meanwhile, serves up Kyle Korver's return to Atlanta for the first time since the early-January trade that sent him to Cleveland. Korver is shooting 52.5 percent on 3-pointers for the Cavs after shooting just 40.9 percent from deep this season as a Hawk. #betterlooks
NBA.com’s John Schuhmann follows Stein’s lead and drops the Hawks three spots to No. 15.
It was a bad start to the post-break schedule for Dennis Schroder and the Hawks. Schroder was suspended for Friday's game against Miami because he got back from the break late, and he began Saturday's game in Orlando on the bench, because he missed the team bus. The Hawks lost both games (falling to 5-8 within the Southeast Division), shooting 38 percent and turning the ball over 35 times. One of the only players who has shot worse from 3-point range over the last month than Schroder (10-for-44) is new teammate Ersan Ilyasova (14-for-65).
Atlanta moves up one spot in Matt Moore’s rankings for CBS Sports.
Ah, the Hawks. The NBA team version of the smiling shrug emoji.
Kurt Helin drops the Hawks four spots this week to No. 13 in his rankings at Pro Basketball Talk.
The Hawks looked more than rusty in the two games since the All-Star break, shooting 38 percent in them combined with an average of 17.5 turnovers. It didn’t help that Dennis Schroder was suspended for one game (visa issues getting back into the country after the break) then didn’t start the next game because he missed a team bus. They are poised to face a team like Toronto or Washington in the first round, I don’t see the consistency from the Hawks to think they could threaten in one of those series.
Finally, Atlanta drops four spots to No. 13 in Jeremy Woo’s rankings for The Crossover.
Will the real Hawks please stand up? Atlanta hasn’t resembled the defensive-minded unit we watched wreck most of the East in January. They’re playoff-bound, but still have to play Cleveland three times, Golden State, San Antonio, and a handful of other tricky games. I’m not convinced yet that this is a team with a chance to win a first-round series.