Monday, April 30, 2012

Hawks Defeat Celtics in Game 1, 83-74

Hawks' forward Josh Smith getting the crowd involved
It was a great night in Atlanta as the Hawks came out on top against Boston in Game 1 of the first round of the playoffs. The Hawks came fired up from the start of the game & didn't look back. Atlanta consistently maintained a double digit lead throughout the game until Boston rallied in the second half but the Hawks were able to hold them off.

Hawks' forward Josh Smith was stuffing the statsheet with 22 points, 18 rebounds, 4 assists, & 1 block. Many critics were surprised with the way the Hawks were playing but no one in the Hawks' locker room was. It was just typical Atlanta Hawks basketball. 

Rajon Rondo had 20 points, 4 rebounds, 11 assists, & 4 steals. He was ejected in the last minute of the 4th quarter after "chest bumping" and screaming at an official. The league office is going to review this and a suspension is pending. Kevin Garnett also added 20 points and 12 rebounds. Celtics' guard Ray Allen was out due to injury and is uncertain for Game 2.

Everybody was doubting this Atlanta Hawks team. Every analyst on ESPN and TNT. Everybody had Atlanta losing in five or six games. But the Hawks want to do what the fans want them to do, which is to shock the world. 

Head coach Larry Drew has this team believing that they can win a lot of games in the playoffs. They have the potential to get farther than the second round. If Atlanta wins this series, they either play the Philadelphia 76ers or a Chicago Bulls team that is without star point guard Derrick Rose for the rest of the playoffs.

Hopefully the Hawks can come out with the same energy they did in Game 1 and come out on top in Game 2. Everybody in Atlanta should come out to Philips Arena and be apart of the Highlight Factory. "Come To Play" with your Hawks and watch their run throughout the playoffs. So until then, GO HAWKS!!!-Yuriy A.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Hawks Defeat The Clippers, 109-102

Johnson driving to the paint against the Clippers
Coming off a rough loss to the New York Knicks on Sunday, the Hawks come in facing a playoff bound and division leading Los Angeles Clippers. Both teams are hungry looking to build momentum heading into the playoffs this weekend. The Hawks came out with the last word.

The Atlanta Hawks collected a win on Tuesday night that was a key victory heading into the game against Dallas on Thursday and are looking to lock up homecourt advantage against the Boston Celtics in the 1st round of the playoffs. This key win was against an improved Los Angeles Clippers team that had Blake Griffin putting up 36 points. Nonetheless, the Hawks' will to win gave them the victory.

One of the huge contributions in the Hawks' win against L.A was Joe Johnson as he put up 28 points, 7 rebounds, and 3 assists. A long, fadeaway three-point shot in the fourth quarter by Johnson helped seal the game for Atlanta. The Hawks also received contributions from fellow star Josh Smith with 18 points and 10 rebounds. PG Jeff Teague scored 21 points. Second chance shots helped the Hawks build momentum throughout the game.

On the Clippers' side, Blake Griffin scored 36 points, 8 rebounds, 3 assists, and 1 blocked shot. PG Chris Paul added 34 points, 8 assists, and 5 rebounds. Despite the "Lob City" duo putting up these huge numbers, the Hawks still managed to put Griffin in foul trouble late in the game which was a factor.

The Hawks play the Dallas Mavericks on Thursday in their last home game of the regular season before they start the playoffs against the Celtics. The team with homecourt advantage is yet to be determined. Atlanta is looking to shock some people and show them that they can compete with the strong teams in the playoffs such as the Miami Heat and Chicago Bulls. Their 1st round showdown with the Celtics will most certainly be like the seven games series between them back in the 2008 playoffs when the Hawks took Boston to seven games.

Keep on looking out for more of my blogs as I update the Hawks' progress in the playoffs. Hopefully we can do some big things. So until then, GO HAWKS!!!-Yuriy A.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Hawks Defeat The Pistons, 101-96

Jeff Teague driving to the paint against the Pistons
I know I've been out for a while but let's get back to business. Good Friday was actually good for the Atlanta Hawks. A win against Detroit is giving the Hawks more momentum heading into the last two weeks of the regular season. It was a big night for PG Jeff Teague, who put up twenty-four points,  eleven assists, five rebounds, two steals, and one block. Josh Smith also had a good night with twenty-two points and twelve rebounds.

On the Pistons' side, PG Rodney Stuckey had twenty-seven points, three rebounds, & three assists. PG Will Bynum also contributed fifteen points off the bench. Detroit played hard all game long and even took the lead after the Hawks lead by twelve in the second half. This was a different Pistons team than the one that played Atlanta back in January.

The Hawks lead the season series with Detroit, 2-1, with one more game against each other to go. This game will be played in Atlanta on April 18th. The Pistons' playoff hopes have evaporated while the Hawks are playing for playoff position. They are currently the fifth seed.

If the Hawks stay healthy, they can finish out the last two weeks of the regular season strong and could do some big things in the playoffs. Players have stepped up through many injuries this season, even through the major loss of all star center Al Horford.

We have seen players such as twenty-seven year old rookie Ivan Johnson and Hawks veteran Zaza Pachulia step up in the absence of Horford. The contribution from the bench will be a big factor come playoff time and can win us a lot of games. Josh Smith has took his game to another level this season and doesn't appear to be slowing down any time soon. Head coach Larry Drew has his team thinking in the right direction and is looking like he has stressed winning to the team.

Keep on looking out for more Hawks blogs coming up and please post comments if you wish. Hopefully our Hawks can have a good rest of the regular season, post season and make a lot of noise. I know we can put the league on notice. So until then, GO HAWKS!!!- Yuriy