Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Oh No, We Suck Again!

It's so much classier to quote Rob Schneider as Townie (and yes, I had to look that up on imdb.com) than it is to cite Fredo Corleone ("I'm smart! Not like everybody says... like dumb... I'm smart and I want respect!") or Yoda ("That is why you fail") after a lost weekend for the Hawks. Maybe lost weekend doesn't do enough to describe two blowout losses to the Charlotte Bobcats. Lost weekend makes me think of the Lost Generation and then I imagine Zaza and Josh Childress sitting in a cafe in Paris, trying to make sense of the relentless ennui of modern existence. There was no such glamour this weekend. The Hawks pretty much trailed the Bobcats wire-to-wire in both games. They lost the two games by 40 points. The most damning number I can muster is this: the Hawks didn't win any of the eight quarters against Charlotte over the weekend. And have I mentioned that the Bobcats were 13-24 coming into the weekend and played both games without Sean May or Ray Felton, while the Hawks had a basically full complement? So yeah, there isn't too much progress to report for the Hawks.

As best I can figure, the Hawks are a young team that is capable of playing quite well, but they struggle mightily with motivation on a night-to-night basis (and Mike Woodson threatening their playing time hasn't had quite the effect that it should have) and they don't respond well to adversity (see: Josh Smith tossing his headband and then giving the finger to the Charlotte crowd after one bad call).

The team is also very soft inside. Zaza isn't the same player he was last year. Whether that's because he's nursing some sort of injury or he just doesn't have the same fire he used to is an open question. Shelden Williams hasn't given the team as much as we all hoped that an NBA-ready lottery pick would. His scoring average was higher in November than it has been in December or January, so there isn't a lot of progress to point to.

The only good thing I can reference from the whole weekend was Marvin Williams finally getting off the skids with a 20-point effort in the blowout loss on Saturday night. So we have that going for us. Which is nice.

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