Archives For Anthony Tolliver

Anthony Tolliver took to Twitter today and asked his 25K followers to ask whatever they wanted. Here are some of the highlights:

Anthony isn’t a huge fan of Joey Crawford… or his mother.

Come on, Tolliver, get with the game; everyone’s heard the new Kanye album already.

AT was a huge fan of his Hawks teammates this year.

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Tolliver had almost no expectations of doing anything coming into this season; he was the last one to make the roster over Damion James and James Anderson. However, due to injuries, he found himself in the rotation for most of the season and was actually a positive asset for the Hawks in the playoffs.

Anthony Tolliver

The stats aren’t really kind to Tolliver and there’s a reason why: he wasn’t exactly a star player. For most of the year, he struggled with his shot and wasn’t a good enough of a rebounder to warrant him getting more minutes. At the time, the Hawks were mostly healthy in the front court, meaning his minutes were few and far between.

After Zaza suffered his Achilles injury, though, Tolliver’s minutes increased. Before the All-Star break, Anthony only played in 34 of 51 possible games and was only averaging 12 minutes per game when he did play. After the break, he played in almost every game and was averaging 20 minutes. Continue Reading…

The Hawks have a lot of decisions to make this offseason. From choosing a new coach to attempting to lure Chris Paul or Dwight Howard, GM Danny Ferry has a lot of stuff on his desk to tackle.

However, what’s to become of the lesser free agents that are currently still on Atlanta’s roster? While many are focusing on the big names, the Hawks will still need a group of solid bench players to fill out next season’s roster.

So who should they keep?

It’s already well known that the team wants Kyle Korver, so I will skip over him. It’s also likely that the Hawks will let go of DeShawn Stevenson, as he showed severe signs of decline this year and has a non-guaranteed contract. Ivan Johnson can still be tendered with a qualifying offer. Mike Scott and Shelvin Mack will be on Atlanta’s Summer League squad, and figure to be in the mix as cheap sign-ees over the summer.

The players I am most interested in are Devin Harris, Anthony Tolliver, and Zaza Pachulia. Not only are these guys still productive, but they are also likely to attract attention from other teams.

Starting with Harris, I think he’s still got a lot left in him if he can stay relatively healthy. (i.e. 60+ games a season) Despite battling injuries this year, he was still able to put up 10 points and three assists a game on good enough shooting percentages. He’s also a plus-defender and was one of the most important players on the Hawks in terms of on/off efficiency. With this class of free agents and the importance of having a serviceable back up point guard, Devin is likely in the market for a decent chuck of cash, around $5 million per season. Continue Reading…

RECAP: Hawks 104, Bucks 99

Bo Churney —  March 25, 2013

FINAL

MIL  (34-35) 99 – 104 (39-31) ATL

Key Performers:
A. Horford (ATL): 24 pts, 7 reb, 6 ast, 2 stl
L. Sanders (MIL): 15 pts, 12 reb, 3 blk
[FULL BOX SCORE]

This was a HUGE game for the Hawks to take. They survived Monta Ellis’ three-point barrage in the fourth quarter to comeback and win in Milwaukee, giving the Hawks a 4.5 game cushion over the eighth-seeded Bucks. The key in this game was mismatches, as Ersan Ilyasova couldn’t handle Josh Smith, and there was no way Larry Sanders was going to be able to make up for the mistakes of the guys around him. And despite Monta’s three threes in the fourth, the Bucks only went 5-21 from three-point range, as the Hawks looked invigorated after that terrible defensive effort against the Trail Blazers on Friday night. The Hawks have now won the season series with Milwaukee and only have 12 games remaining on the season; Atlanta would have to lose at least five of their remaining games for the Bucks to even have a shot to catch up.

Reaction Grades: [assessed 0-10]

Josh Smith: AJC reporter Chris Vivlamore asked Josh Smith about his career-high in seasonal three-point attempts on Saturday, and Josh responded in an even bigger way on Sunday… by taking five three pointers IN THE FIRST HALF! He didn’t take any in the second half, however, and Josh actually did a good job of attacking the basket when he saw he had a weak defender on him. His eight fourth quarter points were also very critical in surviving Monta’s consecutive threes. 8/10

Al Horford: Like Josh, Horford also helped out in closing the deal in the fourth quarter, as he had 10 points in the final period. This might have been one of his best all-around nights, as he also had zero turnovers to go with his six assists and he converted all of his foul shots. Well, now that I actually look at it, Josh had zero turnovers as well… HOW WAS THAT POSSIBLE??? 9.5/10

Kyle Korver: His three-pointer streak of 63 games is now the fifth longest in NBA history. He had a trio of triples in this game, and made of couple of key passes and hustle plays on defense. Pretty much par for the course: nothing really flashy, but a lot of key plays made in small areas to help propel the team to victory. 6.5/10

Devin Harris: Guess who’s hurt? Hurt again? Devin’s hurt… tell a friend. Devin did hurt his foot again in this one (an issue that Larry Drew said shouldn’t be too serious), but before that, we was tearing it up in his home state once again. In just 29 minutes of action, he had 16 points, including four triples. Hopefully, this injury doesn’t linger, because the Hawks can’t exactly make up for injuries any more. 7/10

Jeff Teague: Are the Hawks not allowed to have both of their point guards excelling at the same time? Jeff struggled mightily in the first three quarters, but as soon as Devin went out in the fourth, it was a completely different ball game. After starting out 3-for-9 with five turnovers, Jeff didn’t turn the ball over all in the final 12 minutes, and added six points and three assists. While I’m glad we finally got to see aggressive Teague… it would be nice if he could play that way more when Devin is also on the floor and attacking. 6.5/10

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As discussed last week, the Hawks run two high-low sets in order to free Al Horford for some easy baskets: the elbow pick-and-roll and the pin-down-and-slip. These two sets work remarkably well and are usually reserved for late game situations– they are the Hawks’ go to plays, if you will.

But what happens when opposing defenses figure it out? What happens when those defenses crack the code and stop Horford on the role or contain him off the pin-down? How do the Hawks respond and/or use other sets with similar starting patterns to deceive the opposition?

Well, clearly, there are a lot of questions and, as you might imagine, there are also a lot of answers. When the Hawks run these plays, there are actually a bevy of offensive options at their disposal; it just so happens that the preferred option is usually available. But as you’ll see in the video below, when that primary target is unavailable, there are other ways to beat the defense.

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FINAL

  PHI(23-37) 96 – 107 (34-26)ATL

Key Performers:

J. Teague (ATL): 27 pts, 2 reb, 11 asts
D. Wright (PHI): 20 pts, 9 reb
[FULL BOX SCORE]

There’s no better way to bounce back from a three game road losing streak than to come home, play a crappy team, and kick them around for 48 minutes. The Hawks overcame a sluggish start to blitz the 76ers and get back to their winning ways, which was a welcomed change of pace for John Jenkins, who turned 22 on Wednesday– no one wants to lose on their birthday. So happy birthday day, John. You’re lucky you played the 76ers and not the Heat or the Clippers or something.

Reaction Grades: [assessed 0-10]

Josh Smith: He played only 30 minutes, which is less than usual, but he scored 13 points and grabbed six rebounds, so no one’s complaining. His stat line was marred by the 4 turnovers, 3 of which came early during Atlanta’s putrid start, but he cleaned things up and worked his way into the paint for some buckets. He seemed to be comfortable converting that left-handed hook from the middle of the lane Wednesday night, but while his shooting was passable, his free throw shooting was once again pathetic. 1 of 6 from the stripe is just not going to get it done. 6/10

Al Horford: Another game, another double-double. Horford bossed his way to 21 points, 12 rebounds, and 6 assists. He shot 10 of 17 from the field, good for 58%, and continued to connect on those pick-and-pop jumpers. Quite simply, at the moment, Al Horford cannot be stopped. He’s playing like one of the best players in the NBA.  10/10

Devin Harris: Harris arguably had the highlight of the night when he took the Sixer defense on a ride, penetrating the lane and curling out on the other side to hit a forgotten Horford under the hoop for a slam. The pass was beautiful. Other than that, Harris’ game was mediocre. There isn’t much to talk about, really. 6 points on 3 of 8 shooting and 2 assists. 5/10

DeShawn Stevenson: No one knows DeShawn for any sort of offensive prowess, but on Wednesday night he played a very smart game. He made more than a few nice passes and spaced the offense enough for four open three point attempts. He only made one, but that’s besides the point. His impact wasn’t too palpable or anything, but he came on the court and made the right plays. Although having him start likely didn’t help the Hawks’ godawful, scoreless opening 5 minutes. 5/10

Jeff Teague: Aggressive Teague is the best Teague. He broke down Philly’s defense with relative ease and looked like he was partaking in a pre-game layup drill– literally he drove into the paint for three straight uncontested layups at one point; and then Devin Harris got one on the next possession. The Sixers were playing matador defense for sure, but Teague exploited the heck out of it. He shot 10 of 15 from the field and was excellent with Horford in the pick-and-pop. The correlation between those two playing well together and the Hawks winning is definitely a positive one. 10/10 Continue Reading…

NBA Preseason Atlanta Hawks at Indiana Pacers

AJC’s Chris Vivlamore reported yesterday that the Hawks have waived guard James Anderson and forward Damion James. Anthony Tolliver has made the team, and his contract will become guaranteed if he is still on the roster on January 10th.

Anderson being released is not a surprise. The Hawks currently have a surplus at his skill set. (3-point shooting) Anderson did have a bit of a sophomore slump last year, but the .391 mark he posted from behind the arc in his rookie year means that he will get a shot with another squad.

I did not foresee Damion being cut. I thought that the lack of depth at the SF position, combined with his decent showing this preseason, meant that he would have had a spot on the team. However, this roster move means that the Hawks will start the season with 14 players and an open spot, which will allow the team to make a pickup throughout the season, if they so wish.

Teams are allowed to have 13 players on the active roster. Seeing as he’s on a guaranteed contract and the Hawks aren’t playing him, Johan Petro will likely be the team’s inactive player for most of the season, barring injuries. If you are wondering why, here’s a link to Petro’s Basketball-Reference page, which shows he has negative offensive win shares for his career. (If you aren’t into analytics, let me express it this way: he’s not good)

The Hawks open the season at home versus Houston on Friday, a game that instantly got more exciting with the Rockets’ acquisition of James Harden from OKC. (More on that later)

Jeff Teague Rodney Stuckey

For their final tilt of the preseason, the Hawks (3-3) head up to Auburn Hill to take on the Pistons. (3-4) Some notes:

  • This is a huge game for Anthony Tolliver, Damion James, and James Anderson, as one of these guys is likely to be cut after the game. To be honest, I think AT and Damion are pretty secure, mostly because the Hawks already have 839 guards ahead of Anderson. Anderson is not a terrible player, but I’m was confused that the Hawks picked him up to begin with; he never really had a shot with all of the depth the Hawks have at that position.
  • The starting lineup tonight will likely feature Devin Harris again, which is something that I’m not exactly happy with. My preferred starting lineup at this point would be Teague/Stevenson/Korver/Smith/Horford, which gives the Hawks a good wing defender and an elite shooter to play with. Having Harris and Stevenson at the two and three just seems way too small. (which is noteworthy, considering the league has essentially turned into smallball)
  • For the other side, some fun players to watch for are Greg Monroe and Andre Drummond. Monroe’s lack of defense will be fun for the Hawks, but he’s also a very underrated offensive player. Drummond was selected with the ninth pick in the first round, and is a more traditional presence in the paint. (aka: he’ll probably be covering a lot of Monroe’s mistakes during the season)
  • The game starts at 7:30pm, and can be heard on 680 The Fan. (no TV again)