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Southeast Notes: Hawks, Crawford, Heat, Hornets

The Hawks have taken the league by storm this season and they can thank the Spurs for giving them the blueprint for success, writes Paul Newberry of the Associated Press. Atlanta, like San Antonio, created a team-first atmosphere in which ball movement is one of the major focuses. Point guard Jeff Teague has bought into the team’s philosophy. “I’m enjoying every minute of it,” said Teague. “We’re so unselfish. We don’t care about glory or accolades. It’s just a joy to play on a team like that.” The Hawks have won 35 out of their last 38 games and own a record of 42-9, which is the best in the entire league.

Here’s more from the Southeast Division:

  • The Heat are struggling on offense this season but the team continues to pass on adding proven scorers, like Jordan Crawford, to the roster, writes Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald. Crawford, who averaged 12.2 points per game during his time in the NBA, would give the team a much needed scoring option off the bench, but concerns about the 26-year-old’s maturity have turned Miami away. The Heat are scoring 92.4 point per game this season, which is second worst in the league.
  • Although the Heat have lost five out of their last six games and own a record of 21-29, which is good for ninth place in the Eastern Conference, the team remains committed to making the postseason, writes Ira Winderman of the Sun Sentinel. “Everybody can see the potential of our young group, and they’re getting great opportunities to play, for something, for the playoffs, with our veteran core,” coach Erik Spoelstra said. If Miami finds itself outside the playoff picture, the team has motivation to lose more games because its first-round draft pick will go to the Sixers if it doesn’t fall within the top 10.  The Heat have the 12th worst record in the league, as our reverse order standings show, making it unlikely that they keep their pick if they remain in this position at the end of the season.
  • The Hornets continue to push for a playoff berth and veteran Jason Maxiell has been key to the team’s success during Kemba Walker‘s absence, writes Tom Sorensen of the Charlotte Observer. Maxiell signed with Charlotte for the veteran’s minimum about a month before the start of the season and the 32-year-old has served as a mentor for the 10th youngest team in the league. The Hornets are currently in seventh place in the Eastern Conference with a record of 22-27.
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4 thoughts on “Southeast Notes: Hawks, Crawford, Heat, Hornets

  1. Z....

    I dont understand the narrative that the Heat are terrible, when you consider the fact that it seems like every game, there is someone else hurt, sick, or playing with either or those issues, or even both. Its comical at this point. Can we even go a game without an injury? And it hasnt been just a couple of guys either. Its been literally the entire team. Every time it seems like we are starting to gain some momentum, someone else goes down with an injury. Then, even with that being the case, its always 5-7 minute stretches of games that put us out of it. We could really use a wing player and/or something in the back court. Our guards have been abhorrent this season

    • marsh025

      the lack of any thing on the bench that can give us a boost is what’s killing us in those 5-7 minute stretches where we lose games. that’s when the bench comes in.
      Spo has to stagger his rotations so there’s at least two starters on the floor at all times until we can get a decent backup to come off the bench.
      Instead, Spo plays three D League quality guys and one or two other scrubs while the starters rest.

      • Z....

        Obviously, the injuries are part of that, but I feel like James Ennis should get more minutes. He provides the athleticism we desperately need on the wing, and seems to give us energy when he plays. I feel like Justin Hamilton should get more of a look as well, as he could stretch the floor, and is a pretty good passer and team defender

        Something else that annoys me is the passiveness we’ve seen all year from the whole teem. McRoberts was especially guilty of it when he was playing early in the season, but we see Bosh waiting too long to make a move, stopping the ball like Melo, and Napier looks like he has never played a basketball game in his life sometimes. We keep passing up opportunities, and stopping the ball when we do that. We could at least keep the ball moving in those instances, but instead, we hold the ball until the shot clock is winding down, and are totally flat on the perimeter

        • Thunda-Pig

          The injuries have been brutal for Miami, but if healthy and a couple upgrades they could make some noise. Their problem is they lack player assets (Cole, Napier, Ennis=yuck). Maybe a trade like this: link to
          Miami gets a upgrade at the 1 (at a great price) and a scorer off bench. Chalmers fits with Monta better and Barea is kinda redundant to Harris and Plumlee gets mins at 5. Suns move on with a happier team with minutes going to Dragic, Green and young guys. They get a future 1st rounder from Miami. Keep building assets. Anderson brings floor cap closer and get a second from Dallas. Anderson can be exchanged later for a dead weight contract from a contender for another 2nd. Miami would need to add depth at 4 and 5.

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