13-12! I love a parade!
For my money, Anthony Johnson has been a real key for the team in their recent purple patch. His assist and turnover numbers have looked like, gasp, a real point guard's numbers! He defends the position reasonably well, he gets the team into the offense, and he's good at running the fast break. The Hawks' offense is simply better when Johnson is on the floor. The offense that he provided last night was an unexpected benefit. He nailed a big shot towards the end of regulation and he had the dagger runner over Wee Chris Quinn in overtime.
I also liked Joe Johnson's game last night, as he had a number of big shots. He sent the game to overtime with a bucket in the final minute and his tough three-point play gave the Hawks the lead with a minute to go in overtime. That said, I banged my hand on the seat in front of me when Johnson dribbled out the shot clock on the Hawks' last possession at the end of regulation. For one thing, the Hawks got the ball in a tie game with 40 seconds to go; what the hell were they doing not trying to go two-for-one? Second, Johnson isn't quite quick enough to isolate and then break his defender down at the end of the shot clock. He's not Dwyane Wade. The Hawks ended up with a dreadful possession, leaving the Heat 15 seconds to win the game. I was positively convinced that Wade would dribble out the clock and get fouled, but the Hawks forced the ball out of his hands and Ricky Davis proved to be a hero. Thanks, Ricky!
Speaking of Wade, he seems like a nice guy and all, but I'm not overly juiced to see him in person because his game is all about marching to the foul line over and over again. There's not much that's appealing about 36 points with 20 from the line. It brings back all my bad memories of the 2006 Finals, which were one of the most frustrating sporting events I've ever watched where I didn't have a major rooting interest on either side. I had a slight preference for the Mavs because I like Mark Cuban and I'm sympathetic to Dirk as another athlete unfairly tagged with the "can't win the big one" label, so watching Miami win because of Wade's never ending parade to the foul line was galling.
Unrelated to Wade, I had a lengthy discussion with my brothers last night about what it would take to start a Hawks hooligan group. The group's name would be the Marietta Street Ultras and would specialize in San Siro-style placard shows (or tifo, if you prefer)in the upper deck behind the baskets.
Maybe some sort of mural of a bloodthirsty Hawk doing unspeakable things to a bobcat? We were undecided as to whether the MSUs would be an extreme right-wing or left-wing group. Liberal use of flares would of course be a requirement. Any suggestions would be appreciated.