Glass Half Full?

This is in response to a comment that I replied to on 3/7/2020. Someone said how the Hawks will have “playoff talent” next year. My initial response was “you dont know if next year we’ll have playoff talent. And just because you have playoff talent doesn’t guarantee you playoffs or getting past the first round”. Then another person said again that we will have playoff talent. They went on to say that Clint is playoff talent, we have cap space to sign talent, then asked “why do you think that we won’t have playoff talent”. Then they said I must be a glass half full guy. Here is my response:

“You’ve not read any of my posts or seen any of my videos or listened to my radio show (Around The ATL, if you have Spotify, Spreaker, IheartRadio, look it up). Right now Clint isn’t playing, injury is lingering, you don’t know how many games we will see him. You don’t know who we are getting in free agency if any, or who will be drafted and how they will play or if they will play (Zion was drafted first and only started playing a month ago). Just because you add more players to mask issues this team has had for two years doesn’t mean that it will be enough to actually win all the winnable games we have lost by 10 points or less. It might prevent us from being blown out by 25 or more. We have playoff talent now with the east being so week. Six days ago there were only 6 games between the Hawks and the 9th seed and 9 for the 8th seed. Now we are 11 out. Four months went by before the team won 2 in a row, then we did it multiple times, but we can’t win 3 in a row. Why all of a sudden are we going to have an offensive strategy and defensive strategy in the 3rd year? Why wasn’t it created and implemented in year one? Year two? What will be the reason he was “holding back?”.  No, it doesn’t exist. Either we have an offensive and defensive set of plays being coached and the players are not listening (which is bad) or we don’t have one at all (which is worse).

Individual talent can only mask coaching but so much, as evidenced by the fact we have Trae having one of the best 2nd seasons in NBA history and John Collins destroying everybody since he has returned. We are not a 46 loss team, despite the foolery of the first month and a half of Alex ghosting as a starting center, John missing 25 games, injuries, people who should have never been signed were taking up roster spots, Trae didn’t have a backup, etc. To just never play defense all year is unacceptable and your GM finally came out and said it per the Monday night game. Then you again have a game against the same team that just destroyed you and it’s still ok for most of the fan-base. It’s not ok, and you better believe that impending free agents are watching what is happening. How many times to we have to hear “guys just didn’t have it”, “no energy”, “weren’t ready to play?”.


The coaches main job is to make sure players are ready to play and to compete, to play the game to win, even if you have the worst talent in the league (which we do not). Any team can beat a team with effort. Cavs beat Denver last night even though they only played 7 people while Denver played 10 and Denver is the 3rd seed in the West, and the Cavs have the worst record in the East. Too many times this team doesn’t play with full effort the whole 48 minutes. Last night was not a 2nd of a back to back, the average age of this team is 24, how are they tired (which is not an excuse, back to backs have been scheduled for 30 years and remember, we just won a back to back not two weeks ago). This was a revenge game, at least it should have been, for being embarrassed Monday and your GM saying it was unacceptable. But no, you basically play the same way again. Yes, players are complicit up to a point when it comes to lackluster games, but they’re allowed to do it if the coach keeps them on the floor.


He is the head coach. And don’t say how this is just his second year as a head coach. That’s true, but he has been in the NBA since 2007. 2007-2010 player development for the Cavs. 2011-2013 he was a coach with Memphis. 2013 to 2018 he was a coach with Philly. Eleven years, thousands of scenarios, hundreds of hours of film, practices. He developed the reputation of being a developer of talent and defense. Remember all the good things players he worked with and coached said about him when he got the Hawks job??


He is the head coach. Players can’t play if they’re not in the lineup or in rotation. If players are playing bad, take them out (how do you let Dedmon and Trae shoot 2-17 from three?). If guys “don’t have it”, take them out, like Hunter. Put in Goodwin or Vince or anybody. That’s decision making. We don’t play defense. Players don’t have discipline. There is no accountability. We don’t know how to play pick and roll defense, how to play off screens, we never box out, fast breaks are many times a nightmare. And it’s not a problem for anybody, because it keeps happening, for 2 seasons now. We don’t have real offensive sets, nobody ever cuts to basket or change position on perimeter. We create traps on Trae because of this, because everybody knows that we have no ball movement. We never post John Collins, not enough to affect the game, don’t even try with anybody that has an advantage on their man. We finally started playing zone defense but its not consistent (won the Dallas game because of it, I was there, I watched). I’ve been saying for 2 months if team isn’t going to be taught defense, play zone to mitigate weaknesses. They were able to come back in the Dallas game because of it. Just because the talent level may improve does not guarantee anything.

The 2017 season Denver missed playoffs and they were a 46 win team. All the talent Philly has and they are 6th in the East and have no shot at a title. Blazers have Dame (one of the best in the league), CJ and Melo (still a bucket) and Whiteside (giving you 16 points and 14 boards a game) and they are 10th in the West. At a certain point, the coaching staff has to be put in a position of accountability overall for the team not competing. Don’t you get tired of watching the team look like this? I have said, team could go 0-82 but if they played hard, did all they could to win, played defense, did their best on offense, and still lost, I’m good with that. I’m not good with looking like we have in most of these losses this season. That’s fixable”.










Listen to Around The ATL weekly. Follow us on IMTM Worldwide Radio on Facebook and Instagram @imtmworldwideradio for show schedule. Listen to past episodes follow the Around The ATL pages on Spotify, Spreaker, IheartRadio and Please share!!!!!


Episodes 52 and 53 of our 1 year Anniversary show feat Bob Rathbun and Steve Holman

Bob Rathbun

Steve Holman

Episode 72 feat Dominique Wilkins

Episode 86 feat special guest Jameelah Johnson, sports journalist that covers the Atlanta Hawks and Atlanta Dream

Episode 85 where we had a spirited hour long discussion on the current Atlanta Hawks season in the second hour of the show, we had to take it to overtime to finish.

Leave a Reply