Archives For Jeff Teague

The Hawks allowed the Magic to score 31 points in the opening quarter, showing signs that Atlanta’s prolonged defensive slump may still be alive and result in the team’s first four-game losing streak of the year.

Thankfully for the Atlanta fans, the Hawks’ defense finally showed up in the second half, as Orlando was held to just 31 points over the final 24 minutes of the game as Atlanta cruised to a 95-83 victory.

Paul Millsap finished with 25 points, 11 rebounds, three assists, and four blocks in leading the Hawks to the win. Millsap’s play was extremely vital in the first half when the Hawks were struggling; the power forward had 18 points and eight rebounds in that half alone, which helped keep the Hawks within five points when the buzzer sounded to end the second quarter.

In the third quarter, the Hawks’ defense really started getting the Magic’s offense out of rhythm by forcing bad shots. Orlando became so frustrated that they started taking almost any shot they could get, which resulted in 3-point attempts early in the shot clock by shooters who probably are not suited to take those attempts. However, thanks to some good defense of their own, the Magic maintained a three-point lead heading into the final period.

After Dennis Schroder hit a 3 to open the period and tie the game, Orlando went on a 7-0 run and things were looking bleak for the Hawks. However, the offense that the Hawks have been winning games off of all season finally showed up in the fourth quarter, as Atlanta got the ball moving, created open shots, and connected on those opportunities to open up a 24-3 run that finally buried the Magic. Continue Reading…

A Festus Ezeli dunk with 3:23 remaining in the third quarter was part of a 13-3 run to close the quarter, leaving Golden State up 83-64 en route to a 114-95 victory over the Hawks in Oakland, Ca. Prior to Ezeli’s dunk, Draymond Green dropped off a pass before bowling over a stationary Pero Antic. The absense of a whistle would be a theme throughout the night.

Throughout the first half, the Hawks were plagued by defensive miscues. Golden State’s first basket came on a Justin Holiday layup. Kent Bazemore worked a give-and-go with Al Horford for a layup and nobody picked up Bazemore’s man, Holiday, in transition. With the Warriors up 5-4 with 8:45 remaining in the first, the Hawks were confused about assignments on an inbounds play. DeMarre Carroll left Harrison Barnes to pick up Steph Curry, who was completely unguarded at the 3-point line. Curry got it to Barnes for a corner three and an 8-4 Warriors lead.

With 6:15 remaining in the first, Jeff Teague made zero effort to get around a Bogut pick, and Curry hit the resulting wide-open three to put the Warriors in front 17-13. Then, with 2:53 left in the first, Barnes got a dunk off an inbounds play as Paul Millsap was caught unaware by a back screen. That put Golden State up 22-18. On the very next Warriors possession, Carroll picked up Andre Iguodala in transition. Millsap stood around guarding nobody as Barnes cut down the lane for another dunk and a 24-18 GSW lead with 2:30 remaining in the first. Moments later, Antic cheated toward the three point line as Curry came off a Marreese Speights pindown screen and Iguodala instead passed it to Speights for an uncontested dunk and a 26-22 Golden State lead with 1:15 to play in the first. Continue Reading…

Even with Kyle Korver out to injury and Al Horford out for rest purposes, the Atlanta Hawks hung on to Monday night’s game against the Sacramento Kings to get the 110-103 victory.

The first quarter of this game helped signify that it would be a close affair all night. The Kings were shooting well and playing with pace on offense. DeMarcus Cousins was a load early on both offensively and defensively; at one point, he blocked shots on consecutive Atlanta possessions and simply made the Hawks look silly in their offensive attempts. Thankfully for the Hawks, DeMarre Carroll and Paul Millsap were able to make shots and take advantage of some mismatches, leading to the two scoring eight points a piece in the quarter.

The Hawks started to pull away in the second quarter, largely thanks to the play of one Jeffrey DeMarco Teague. Teague’s agressive play, combined with the defensive intensity of Kent Bazemore, allowed the Hawks get an advantage, resulting in a 53-47 lead at halftime.

The third quarter was a repeat of the first… almost literally. The Kings won the first quarter 29-28 and they won the third quarter by the same score. Jason Thompson and Andre Miller started making their impacts in this period, as their play sparked a 16-7 mini-run by Sacramento that allowed the Kings to stay in the game. This run was despite DeMarcus Cousins nearly having a meltdown, as the former Kentucky product recorded four turnovers, four fouls, and one technical foul in the period. Continue Reading…

Hawks Destroyed in Denver

Bo Churney —  March 11, 2015 — 1 Comment

Well that was not exactly the way the team wanted to start off the road trip.

The Atlanta Hawks went into Denver on Wednesday night and were absolutely demolished by the Nuggets, losing by a score of 115-102. The Hawks were saved from an embarrassing score by the team’s garbage unit, who went on a 24-1 run in the fourth quarter to make the game a little interesting by cutting Denver’s huge lead to just single-digits with about a minute to go.

However, that one run was not indicative of what really happened in this contest. The game was similar to the Hawks win against Sacramento on Monday night, only in reverse and seemingly worse. The Hawks had problems making shots and executing on offense throughout most of the game while Denver was not missing from the field, regardless of the difficulty of the shot attempt.

The first quarter appeared to be a fluke, but it proved to be a sign of things to come. The Hawks committed silly turnovers like stepping out of bounds twice and missing a few open 3s. Atlanta was getting some decent looks inside the perimeter, however, shooting 9-for-14 on 2s during the quarter. This combined with Denver’s 60% shooting from the field seemed to show that the Hawks could rebound later in the game. Continue Reading…

The Hawks opened the game with two straight DeMarre Carroll threes and didn’t stop shooting until the final buzzer, running up a season-high 130 points against the Sacramento Kings Monday night at Philips Arena. Each of the five starters shot at least 50% as the Hawks rang up 42 assists, tied for the fourth-highest total in Atlanta’s history. Atlanta hit 20 3s, a franchise-record for a single game, and notched their 50th win of the season, marking the first time since the team moved to Atlanta that the Hawks were the first team in the league to reach 50 wins.

The Hawks came out firing in the first quarter, assisting on 12 of their 13 field goals and shooting 57% in the quarter, including five 3s from Carroll and Kyle Korver. Korver had been struggling since the All-Star Break, shooting just 31% from 3 and 32% overall since the extended time off. Korver finished 6-for-8 from 3 as the Kings lost him numerous times in transition and in the half court offense. Korver has recently said that his shooting troubles date back to before the break, so this big game should do wonders for any issues through which he’s been working.

Atlanta scored 76 points in the first half, their highest total in a half all season, racking up 25 assists along the way. The Hawks shot 62.5% from the field in the first half, including 12-for-19 on 3s, as the ball continued to find open shooters while the Kings scrambled on defensive rotations. Continue Reading…

The Hawks are definitely in for the long haul. And with Mike Budenholzer being a disciple of the Spurs organization, resting players on the second game of a back-to-back is not surprising.

Losing to the Philadelphia 76ers after having a 16-point lead, however, is not a great showing.

The Sixers rallied against the shorthanded Hawks in the second half, limiting Atlanta to just 31 points of offense over the final 24 minutes. The Hawks — sitting Kyle Korver, DeMarre Carroll, and Paul Millsap — had absolutely nothing to give in the second half on offense, shooting just 11-for-40 (27.5%) from the field and only getting to the foul line six times.

The Hawks’ two remaining starters, Al Horford and Jeff Teague, were the big culprits in the collapse. Horford missed his final seven shots from the field, a few of the them badly hitting off the front of the rim and another that completely missed the rim altogether. Meanwhile, Teague was having problems with Philly’s quick and athletic defense, yielding four turnovers in the 17 minutes he played in the second half.

Horford was not the only one to have problems hitting the rim. John Jenkins, who started for Korver, opened with second half by missing the rim on two 3-point attempts. Mike Scott had similar “success” in the second half, as he also fell victim to an airball on a wide-open attempt. Continue Reading…

This Week In The Southeast, the Atlanta Hawks have clinched their way to the playoffs and that means they’re ready to coast the rest of the regular season, the Wizards have finally finished their regression to the mean, and the Heat and Hornets race for the playoffs is starting to heat up. The Magic? Well…they’re a team that plays basketball.

Atlanta Hawks, 49-13, 1st in the East, 2-1 this week ATL

Two big things for the Hawks happened this week. To start things off they clinched the playoffs already and it’s March. They also unveiled a statue of Atlanta Hawks legend, Dominique Wilkins, and had one of the greatest throwback nights in recent memory. They took on the Cleveland Cavaliers that night and managed to look pretty good against a team many people believe should have the advantage over Atlanta come playoff time. Of course, Atlanta couldn’t finish the week undefeated when they decided to rest starters to the Philadelphia 76ers and lose. Hey, the 95-96 Bulls lost to the expansion Raptors and who’s not to say that this Hawks team are the 95-96 Bulls?

Washington Wizards, 35-28, 5th in the East, 1-2 this week WAS

It’s hard to believe the Wizards were at one point the number one team in the Eastern conference, and a favorite to win the the Southeast Division. Their slide appears to have found a happy medium and Washington has regressed to a mean that fits around what they were last season. Just good enough to maybe make some noise in the playoffs, but just mediocre enough to not give you any real hope. This week the Wizards beat the playoff hopeful Miami Heat, and then they lost to the Bucks and Bulls.

Continue Reading…

Is Jeff Teague a good defender? Most NBA fans probably think of Teague as a below-average 3-point shooter who thrives on drives to the basket in Atlanta’s spread-the-floor offense. Fewer fans likely realize that, as of this season, Teague has elevated himself to elite status as a defensive point guard.

With all the recent talk of “analytics” versus the “eye test,” Teague’s defense presents an interesting case study. The numbers tell us that Teague is an elite defensive point guard. Of 79 point guards rated, Teague ranks fifth in defensive real plus-minus per ESPN.com. In 2013-14, the season in which ESPN.com introduced the stat, Teague ranked 28th out of 69.

This single-season improvement is confirmed by NBA.com’s player tracking stats. According to data gathered via SportVU optical tracking cameras installed in every NBA arena, opponents shoot 3.2% below their season average when guarded by Teague. Last season, opponents shot a fraction of a percent better. Continue Reading…

The Rockets were without James Harden and Dwight Howard, but were still deadly enough to nearly take out the Hawks with a barrage of shots in the first three quarters. However, the Hawks rallied behind a hot crowd in the fourth quarter and completed a 18-point comeback to win 104-96.

“Seems like we were constantly trying to dig ourselves out of a hole,” said head coach Mike Budenholzer on his players. “The last one I think we went down 15 with nine or ten minutes left in the quarter and they found a way to make one more run to get over the hump.”

The Hawks came out of the gates extremely sluggish, as Jeff Teague’s lack of attention on the opening tip led to an easy layup for the Rockets instead of the Hawks taking possession. This sloppy play persisted throughout the first quarter, punctuated by nine Atlanta turnovers, which resulted in a 31-22 Rockets lead after 12 minutes of play.

“I didn’t like our focus coming out,” said Budenholzer, who was assessed a technical foul in the first quarter.

The Rockets continued to pile on in the second quarter, with Jason Terry and Terrence Jones combining for 21 points in the period. The Hawks interior defense on Jones was non-existent and Terry kept punishing the out-of-position Hawks by nailing open 3-pointers.

“They were doing a lot of great things offensively,” said Al Horford, who scored 18 points in the game. “It kept us guessing a lot of the time. We prepared for playing against, you know, like James Harden and everything and it kind of changes how you’re going to approach the game.” Continue Reading…

Hawks Outlast the Magic

Bo Churney —  February 28, 2015 — Leave a comment

This looked like it was going to be a blowout and quite honestly, this game should have been a blowout.

The Hawks were leading 21-5 early in the first quarter and were firing on on cylinders. Paul Millsap had 11 quick points, hitting three 3-pointers in about a one minute span in the opening minutes. Everyone was passing well and flying around on defense. Even as the Magic started to pick up their own pace, the Hawks still maintained a double-digit lead into the second quarter.

And that is where the wheels nearly fell off the wagon.

The Hawks’ second quarter can best be defined as a disaster, as the Magic outscored Atlanta 29-14 over the 12-minute frame. The Hawks shot 5-for-19 from the field in the quarter and turned the ball over 11 times. 11! The Magic, to their credit, were doing a good job at forcing the sloppiness and they capitalized off of Atlanta woes by shooting 50% for the quarter, including hitting four 3-pointers.

Whatever Coach Budenholzer said at halftime worked, as the Hawks only turned the ball over one time in the third quarter as they regained control of the game. The ball movement was crisp and the team countered the 11 turnovers from the previous quarter with 11 assists in the third. Jeff Teague, who was 0-for-6 from the field in the first half, also finally got his motor running, going 4-for-4 from the field for nine points as he was finally able to capitalize on opportunities in the lane. Continue Reading…