The last time the Mavs met the Hawks, Dallas got a rude awakening after their season-opening stomping of the Cavaliers. The upstart Hawks served the Mavs a 101-94 defeat in which they came on strong and outscored the Mavericks 33-25 in the fourth quarter. The Hawks broke a four-game losing streak against the Mavs in that win. They will face Dallas for the last time this season in today's game.
Break up the Hawks
Don't call them upstart anymore, because the Hawks are actually looking like a legitimate team for the first time in a long time. They have the fourth-best record in the East at 15-13 and have won five straight. During that five-game stretch, they are averaging 106 points per game and allowing 98.6. They have topped 100 points in three of their last four games after going on a streak of 15 games without scoring in triple digits. In other words: Atlanta is hot right now, and the Mavs had better be ready for a surprisingly explosive offense.
Marvin Williams can play after all
The Hawks have taken more than their fair share of flack for passing on Chris Paul and Deron Williams in favor of Marvin Williams in the 2005 draft. For a team that has been in need of a solid point guard for some time, either one of those players would likely have lifted the Hawks up from lowliness and brought quite a bit more prosperity than they have experienced in the last two seasons. Pair that with Marvin Williams' slow development over his first two seasons, and the Hawks are more than tired of hearing about it. But, at long last, Williams is turning into a solid player. In those five-straight Hawks wins, Williams is averaging 20.6 points and 5.8 rebounds on 58 percent shooting. He's become a solid asset to a team that looks bound for the playoffs and even though the Hawks could use Paul or Deron Williams more, Marvin is looking pretty good. Speaking of needing a point guard...
Anthony Johnson is looking good
Remember when the Mavericks traded Anthony Johnson last season for a pick that ended up being Nick Fazekas? The Hawks were grilled yet again for trading a pick away for a player that didn't look to be worth the sacrifice. Funny thing is, Johnson has been a key part to the Hawks' current winning ways. In his last five games, Johnson is averaging 13.4 points, 8.2 assists and is shooting 52 percent from the floor. He is shooting the three well and is becoming the strong veteran distributor the Hawks need to make their system work.
- Josh Smith has to be the league leader in block-to-dunk combos.
- Somebody clip that bird.
- This kid's got nothing on Bentley Green.
Random useless fact
In 1971, the Hawks made the confusing choice to switch to green and blue uniforms. Thankfully, it only lasted one season.
-Scooter Hendon, Hoops Nerd