Atlanta Rolls to 6-0 Start
This season sure is turning out fun to watch. Apart from Josh Smith's injury which will sideline him for 2-4 weeks, everything is going Atlanta's way. The additions of Maurice Evans and Flip Murray are certainly a big reason why, giving the Hawks more depth than they've had in many seasons. Combine that with a healthy Mike Bibby, a rejuvenated Zaza Pachulia, and the experience and confidence that they got from their first round 7 game series with the Celtics last season, and its clear that this 6-0 start is no fluke. 4 of their 6 wins have come on the road. The Hawks only won 12 road games all last season. They're largely doing it with great defense. Their latest game, against the Chicago Bulls, was the first game where they have allowed 100+ points, with a 113-108 win. Another big factor is the confidence they have to finish out games. Many of these games have been close in the 4th quarter, and are games that over the past several seasons, they would have lost. They aren't panicking now and letting games get away like they used to, they know they can hold off opponents, and even come back from 4th quarter deficits to win. With this win, they remain one of 2 teams left unbeaten, the other being the Los Angeles Lakers. And I have seen they are finally starting to get some attention and coverage on major media web sites. After years and years of being the laughing stock of sports sites, its great to see us finally earning some respect. Now the Hawks will face their toughest challenge of the season, as they bring their 6-0 record into Boston in a rematch of round 1 last season, a place where the Hawks lost all 3 playoff games they played. I guarantee that a win tomorrow would make people start thinking about the Hawks as not just a playoff team, but a deep playoff team and possibly even a championship caliber team. The Hawks certainly think they can beat anybody, and with the way they've started this season, I'm believing it too. And I'm loving watching every minute of it.