February Review & Recap
February couldn’t have been uglier for the Hawks. Well actually it could have….but it wouldn’t have been by much, because the Hawks just had a terrible and dreadful February.
In February, the Hawks went 4-9 in the 13 games they played.
Wins: vs. Pacers (+10), @ Magic (+2), @ Suns (+2), vs. Magic (+5)
Losses: vs. Grizzlies (-19), vs. 76ers (-11), vs. Suns (-9), vs. Heat (-20), @ Lakers (-8), @ TrailBlazers (-20), @ Bulls (-11), @ Knicks (-17), vs. Warriors (-3)
As you can see, an ugly month.
The Hawks went 2-5 in their home court and went 2-4 on the road. Ugly.
You can also see that the margin in their wins aren’t big. In wins, they outscored opponents by an average of 4.75 points a game. In losses, they got outscored by an average of 13.1 points a game. Again, not pretty numbers.
I knew the Hawks would struggle in February, just because they haven’t shown this season (or past seasons) that they are able to beat teams with winning records on a consistent basis. As you can see from the schedule above, only 3 (Suns twice and Warriors once) of the 13 games are against teams with losing records. The Hawks went 1-2 on that. That’s already ugly. What’s even uglier is that the Hawks continued their struggle in wins vs. .500 or better teams, as they went 3-7. Again, ugly.
It just wasn’t a good month for the Hawks. Chemistry problems are arising, players are (or a player is) complaining, the Hawks had no players in the All-Star game, and oh yeah, did I mention that the Hawks got bit hard by the injury bug?
Month of March Preview
You have to think the Hawks will have a better month this month than February, right? I mean, how worst can it get?
Well, I can tell you that March is already not off to a good start. Like I posted earlier, Joe Johnson & Willie Green are out for the first two games of March (Bucks & Thunder).
But for now, let’s just look at how the schedule fares for the Hawks in March.
- They play a total of 19 games.
- 9 games at home. 1
- 0 games on the road.
- Out of the 9 games at home, only 4 of them are against teams with a .500 or better record. Not bad.
- Out of the 10 games on the road, 5 of them are against teams with a winning record and 5 of them are against teams with losing records. Not bad.
- The Hawks have 6 back-to-backs. Ouch.
- 1 back-to-back-to-back. Ouch.
- One 6 game road trip. Ouch.
From the looks of it, March is definitely not going to be easy.
A lot of players will have to step up and improve on their performance from last month.
- Joe Johnson only averaged 14.5 ppg while shooting 39% from the field. That’s not going to cut it.
- Jeff Teague only averaged 11.2 ppg, 2.8 apg, and shot a pretty low 42% from the field. That needs to improve.
- Marvin Williams only averaged a low 6.7 ppg while shooting 36% from the field. That’s not good enough.
- Kirk Hinrich only averaged 5.0 ppg and 2.2 apg while shooting 34% from the field. That definitely needs to improve.
- Josh Smith scored a team high 17.1 ppg but he shot a pretty low 41% from the field. Even Josh can improve.
I could list every single player in the team and say that all of them need to improve on what they did in February, if they want to have better results in March.
The Hawks are only 2.5 games ahead of the Celtics (7th seed) and the Knicks (8th seed). Who knows? If the Hawks continue to struggle, the Hawks may find themselves down to the 8th seed a week and a half from now (maybe even shorter).
The Hawks can’t afford to go down to the 7th or 8th seed, that will mean that they will have to face either Miami or Chicago in the first round, and you can already guarantee that’s a sure first round exit.
Hawks will post a record of 9-1o in March. I’m not sure if that’s a good sign or not, because I tend to be more optimistic about this Hawks team than I’m supposed to be….but I’m hoping they prove me right this time….or prove me wrong and post an even better record than 9-10.
Here’s how the schedule shakes out.
Mar 2: vs Bucks
Mar 3: vs Thunder
Mar 6: @ Pacers
Mar 7: @ Heat
Mar 9: @ Pistons
Mar 11: @ Kings
Mar 13: @ Nuggets
Mar 14: @ Clippers
Mar 16: vs Wizards
Mar 18: @ Cavaliers
Mar 19: vs Celtics
Mar 21: vs Cavaliers
Mar 23: vs Nets
Mar 24: @ Wizards
Mar 25: vs Jazz
Mar 27: @ Bucks
Mar 28: vs Bulls
Mar 30: vs Knicks
Mar 31: @ 76ers
What record do you see the Hawks posting in March?