Archives For Kyle Korver

The Hawks were in Washington on Tuesday night for the first game of a four-games-in-five-nights stretch and walked away with the win, 106-102. Jeff Teague led the way with 28 points and Mike Scott came up big off the bench with 17 points and seven rebounds, with 12 of those points coming in the fourth quarter.

The Hawks took a 41-39 lead into the break, but it was an uglier first half than the scoreline indicates. The referees were prominently involved on both ends, and when the teams weren’t being fouled, they were turning it over. There were 18 fouls called in the first half, split evenly between the two teams, and the teams combined to turn the ball over 23 times. Both teams shot under 40% in the first half, including a disastrous 1-for-7 performance from DeMarre Carroll and a combined 2-for-14 from the Wizards’ Paul Pierce and Bradley Beal. The two point guards led the way for their respective teams; Teague had 10 points and John Wall had 13 at the half.

Atlanta cleaned up their offense in the second half and continued to force turnovers from the sloppy Wizards guards. Wall and Beal accounted for 13 of the 25 Wizards turnovers and the Hawks took full advantage, scoring 32 points off of those 25 turnovers. Atlanta finished with 13 steals and 6 blocks, including a season-high four steals for Carroll. Continue Reading…

The season is young, but the next four games represent a critical part of the Hawks’ schedule. The Hawks will face two assured playoff teams (Washington and Toronto), another playoff contender who happens to have the best player in basketball so far this season (New Orleans and Anthony Davis), and a divisional rival that the Hawks have already played this season and lost to on fluke circumstances. (Charlotte, a terrible offensive foul call, and a banked-in Lance Stephenson 30-footer)

Luckily for the Hawks, they will host three of these four games in Philips Arena. In short, they need to capitalize on that.

The Hawks have lost some close games this season and could easily be 8-3. But as Buddy Grizzard pointed out, that record wouldn’t really matter; the Hawks have played like a mediocre team so far this season. Has part of that been because of DeMarre Carroll’s injury at the hands of JR Smith? Sure, but if the Hawks want to prove that they are good and not just average, these next four games give them the chance to do that.

Here are some things that I want to see from the Hawks this week that I think will improve the team’s chances against a schedule that is about to toughen up.

  • MORE HORFORD (MOREFORD?)
    Horford has been solid in his return from his pectoral injury last season. However, his presence within the team’s offense and his minutes have been reflective of a player that suffered a season-ending injury the year before. But I think around now is when Coach Budenholzer and the Hawks should start to ramp up Horford’s involvement in the offense. As of now, 40% of Horford’s shots are long 2s. He is shooting an other-worldly 55% on those shots, but Horford has the ability to operate as a play-maker and scorer off the dribble and in the post. He can give more than what the Hawks’ offense is having him do at this point. Continue Reading…

Al Horford had one of the worst games of his career on Wednesday night against the Jazz. He was missing shots and playing terrible defense; nothing was working for the two-time All Star. Horford quickly redeemed himself on Friday night, scoring the first seven points of the game to spark a wire-to-wire victory for the Hawks over the Miami Heat.

Horford opened up with two jumpers, including a corner 3 to get the game going. He then drew a foul on James Ennis — who was starting for the injured Dwyane Wade — and converted both free throws. The Hawks then followed with a Kyle Korver 3-pointer and a Thabo Sefolosha dunk, opening a 12-1 lead on the Heat and setting the tone for the entire game.

“We came out with a sense of urgency and played well in the first quarter,” said Jeff Teague, in what is probably the most generic Jeff Teague quote of all time.

The real story from the Hawks in this game was the superb balance that was exhibited on offense. Eight different players scored at least 10 points, including a 12-point, 5-for-5 performance from Shelvin Mack off the bench. This was a much needed performance from Mack, who had scored just 10 points on 3-for-15 shooting all season before his mini-explosion. Continue Reading…

Paul Millsap needs to undergo a name change.

The Hawks starting forward had a slight wardrobe malfunction on Wednesday night, which saw his jersey initially misspell his last name as “Milsap”. His jersey was replaced with a correct one before the first quarter ended, but the damage had been done and this would forever be the night that Paul was known as “Milsap”. He made sure that the fans would not forget it either, as Millsap had recorded a double-double by halftime, recorded a huge dunk that ended up on Sportscenter’s Top 10 Plays, and finished with a monster stat line of 30 points, 17 rebounds, three assists, two steals, and two blocks to lead the Hawks to a 100-97 victory over the Utah Jazz.

The first half saw little to no effective defense being played, as both the Hawks and Jazz were getting whatever they wanted on offense. The Hawks were more dependent on jumpshots, while the Jazz were being extremely effective at clearing out Millsap and Al Horford from under the basket to get easy shots at the rim. Halftime saw Mike Budenholzer adjust against his former assistant Quin Snyder, as the Hawks were able to more effectively shut off the lane and force the Jazz out into long 2s, of which the Jazz still made relatively often.

The two teams continued to go back and forth all the way until the final minute, where Kyle Korver hit a deep 3 out of isolation to give Atlanta a 98-97 lead. The remaining three Jazz possessions ended with a blocked shot attempt, a turnover, and a horribly missed 3-pointer thanks to great defense from Korver, and the result was an Atlanta Hawks win that put them over the .500 mark at 4-3. Continue Reading…

Dennis Schröder’s play so far in the 2014-15 season has been a revelation.

Schröder scored 12 points in the fourth quarter as Jeff Teague sat on the bench to lead the Hawks to a 91-85 victory over the Knicks. Schröder also chipped in four dimes and four rebounds in 28 minutes of play, the most playing time he has received all season.

Paul Millsap finally snapped out of his offensive woes, scoring 19 points on 3-for-4 shooting from 3. Millsap’s play was particularly strong in the the third quarter, where he scored 12 of the Hawks’ 26 points to help give the Hawks a 64-59 lead.

The Knicks out-shot the Hawks from the field, but the Hawks continously attacked New York’s interior, resulting in a 28-12 free throw advantage for Atlanta. More impressive was that the Hawks made 27 of their 28 attempts from the charity stripe, which has been a spot where the team has struggled over the last several seasons. The Knicks, on the other hand, compounded their lack of attempts by only making seven of their 12 attempts.

Kyle Korver survived an 0-for-8 shooting stretch to tally 17 points on the night. Continue Reading…

The Hawks’ double overtime loss on Friday night to the Hornets was a disaster. It would be easy to say that the Hawks would enter crisis mode had they lost to the Knicks the following night.

Crisis averted.

Kyle Korver scored a season-high 27 points on 6-for-9 shooting from 3-point range to propel the Hawks back from a 13-point halftime deficit to win 103-96. Korver also chipped in three blocked shots, which was part of a stronger defensive effort from the Hawks in the second half. After allowing 61 points in the first, the Hawks only allowed 35 points in the second, as the Knicks recorded more shot attempts than points over the final two periods. (13-for-38 shooting)

This game really was the tale of two halves, as the Hawks were absolutely dreadful on both ends of the court in the first half. Notable first half stats include 35% shooting, allowing 61 points and nine offensive rebounds, and recording only six assists. The defensive effort is what concerned Coach Budenholzer the most.

“We were more focused on our defense,” said Budenholzer on the difference between the two halves. “I didn’t realize we only had six [assists] in the first half or what we finished with. Defensively is where our focus was tonight. We have to continue to get better there. The offense will come.” Continue Reading…

Hawks Fall to Raptors 109-102

Bo Churney —  October 29, 2014 — 4 Comments

The NBA’s season opener brought the Hawks to Toronto, where they faced off against the Raptors in Al Horford’s return to regular season basketball.

The Raptors used a 9-2 run at the end of the second quarter to take an eight-point (60-52) lead into halftime. They would not relinquish this lead and instead built upon it in the third quarter. 11 different Raptors scored in the third quarter, allowing Toronto to build a double-digit lead that left the Hawks scrambling for ideas.

Toronto continued their run at the start of the fourth quarter, with their lead ballooning to as many as 19 mid-way through the period. However, Mike Scott and the Hawks re-found the 3-ball late in the game and quickly chipped away at Toronto’s big lead. A DeMarre Carroll layup that was goaltended with 35 seconds left made it a 105-101 game in favor of Toronto and the Hawks quickly fouled DeMar DeRozan to send him to the line. DeRozan missed both free throws, but jumped to just the right spot off the miss to grab the long rebound. DeRozan was then fouled again, making both attempts on the second trip to the line and essentially dashing the Hawks’ comeback hopes.

Horford looked good in first regular season game since December 29, but he was still rusty and tentative with his jumpshot. The result was 6-for-15 from the field for 12 points. Despite that, Horford still played well in the other facets of the game, grabbing a game-high 13 rebounds, dishing out three assists, and block three shots. After the game, Horford said he started to get into a rhythm in the fourth quarter, and it showed when he sank back-to-back jumpers that helped the Hawks cut into the large Raptor lead. Continue Reading…

The Bulls technically won this game 85-84 after Jimmy Butler hit a 3-pointer at the buzzer.

Which is nice for Chicago fans. It’s nice to win games. The problem with this for me is that the Hawks gave away this preseason game long before Butler’s 20 point fourth quarter.

Why am I almost completely ignoring the fourth quarter? Because this is the preseason and Joakim Noah, Jimmy Butler, and Pau Gasol leading a 20-point, fourth quarter comeback against John Jenkins, Jarell Eddie, and Adreian Payne doesn’t inspire much in terms of what we should expect from this Atlanta Hawks team. (besides that the Hawks clearly care more about resting their main players)

Here is what I did takeaway, though: Atlanta’s starters (sans Jeff Teague and Paul Millsap) and main bench players dominated Chicago’s rotation. The offense was not very efficient, but they were getting good looks, not turning the ball over, and scoring enough to overpower Chicago’s anemic offense.

Al Horford put up four points (2-for-6 shooting) in 16 minutes, but he also had six rebounds, two assists, and a steal. He looked like his usual great self on defense and was progressing the offense by immediately running defensive rebounds up the floor. His jumper is still a bit short, but that is something that should progress as he gets more meaningful minutes on the floor. Horford had a plus-12 rating for the game. Continue Reading…

After 10 months on the sidelines due to a pectoral injury, Al Horford finally returned to action on Tuesday night for a preseason matchup with the Miami Heat.

But it was an inauspicious return for Al Horford, as Chris Bosh won the tip, scored a layup, made a jumper and recorded three rebounds in the first three minutes as the Heat opened on a 14-0 run. Bosh’s two baskets on Horford during that run looked effortless and Horford’s baseline turn-around was well short and unconvincing.

You can’t lay it all on Horford’s plate, however, as the entire starting unit played the first quarter in a listless and disinterested manner. Jeff Teague’s layup and free throw, a pair of threes from DeMarre Carroll and Kyle Korver and a short jumper and layup by Paul Millsap was all the offense the starters were able to muster in the 1st as the Heat built a 31-16 lead heading into the second quarter.

Horford showed signs of life in the second quarter, assisting Mike Scott on a dunk and hitting a 13-footer. However, James Ennis, a player whose rights Danny Ferry traded to the Hawks’ division rivals, made a dunk and hit a corner three to counteract Horford’s positive efforts. Continue Reading…

Not at his position. (which is center) Not in the division. Not in the East.

In the entire NBA.

CBS Sports once again did their Elite 100 players in the NBA and the three man crew placed Horford in the 13 spot among NBA players.

Here’s what the Eye on Basketball had to say about Horford:

The reality is that Horford in many ways is what Noah is billed as. He’s an all-around center. He’s able to score on his own out of the post, from mid-range, and even dabbled with the three-ball before the injury took him out last season. He’s a smart and commited defender, versatile and long. Horford’s passing is brutally underrated and he can create separation with his screens. Oh, and in any season where he’s played more than 30 games, he’s never averaged less than nine rebounds per 36 minutes.

That’s a lot of hype for the Hawks’ center, who missed the majority of last season with a torn pectoral muscle. Horford is usually criminally underrated in such rankings, so seeing him this high is somewhat surprising.

Joining Horford in their top 100 were Paul Millsap at 35, Kyle Korver at 52, and Jeff Teague at 63. Assuming those four players live up to these rankings, the Hawks should find themselves in contention come playoff time.