The Atlanta Hawks is the team you try your best to like but they always disappoint you. With the talent the Hawks have assembled you would think they would be a legitimate contender in the east but that isn’t the case. Each year you think next year will be the year the Hawks will turn that corner but you never see them cut the wheel. This team is good enough to consistently get 4th or 5th seeds in the playoffs every year but if this franchise wants to cut the wheel it must blow this team up like Ray Lewis reading a dive play.
Fresh off of losing a 6 game series to the Celtics which they had home court advantage, Rondo was suspended for a game and Pierce had a bum knee. The Hawks losing is what we all expected.
Two years ago the organization had a chance to start the path of redemption when their star player Joe Johnson was a free agent. The Hawks organization was faced with a major decision let their best player walk for free or overpay their best player! What did the organization do? Overpay their best player, in the amount of 119 million dollars over 6 years. If your Joe you take the money I understand that wholeheartedly but the organization just locked themselves in a mediocre team for the next 6 years, well 4 year since he’s played out two of the years.
Besides being locked in for the Johnson contract the Hawks have a lot of the same pieces which is why the puzzle doesn’t fit. Josh Smith the athletic forward is playing the 4 spot when his style fits more of a 3 skill set minus the 3 point marksmanship. Al Horford who I believe is the best big man on the team is playing the 5 when he is clearly a 4. I already talked about my man Marvin Williams in a post a few weeks ago, he’s a 3 in he’s playing the right position but just imagine them having a star PG (Paul or Williams) besides him, this might be a different post.
The Hawks did draft Jeff Teague a few years back a promising young PG. Which is a step in the right direction. I personally think Teague and Horford if they can play him at the 4 and get a real 5 aka center on the team to help them. These two players would be who I build my team around in a perfect world.
The problem they will have completing the task is Johnson will be Damn near impossible to trade with 4 years left on his max deal. The only person you can trade that has value is Josh Smith. Smith is very versatile but we all know this team is just a solid team that will never turn the corner. With Smith gone the Hawks will be forced to play Horford at the 4, which instantly will make them a little better.
Because of Smith’s talent it will be hard for the Hawks to pull the trigger but sometimes less is more. Also, Smith only has one more year left on his contract so after the 2012-13 the Hawks will be at another crossroads. Will they continue to pay him top dollar or let him go for nothing if they want to improve they must trade him for valuable pieces.
The Hawks must make a move to shake things up so they can take the next step. We all know where this current team is headed, its like a broken record that only repeats the same part over and over and over again. The sad thing is maybe the moves in the past might have too much control over the future than the organization had hoped for.