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Hawks October/November Thread

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Wednesday's Hawks News: Korver: 'My best basketball is still to be played'

5:48 AM ET

Korver on summer mindset: ‘My best basketball is still to be played’: Kyle Korver wasn’t himself. The fact that the Hawks’ sharpshooter did not perform to his lofty standard last season nagged at him. How long did the somewhat down year bother him? Only “all … summer … long” he said as he dragged out each word for emphasis. The fix went so far as to involve the installation of a mirror in the garage of his offseason home. -- The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

An early look at what the Hawks’ playing rotation will look like: At least early in the regular season, the Hawks’ final exhibition game was an indicator of what the playing rotation will look up. Past the starters of Dennis Schroder, Kyle Korver, Kent Bazemore, Paul Millsap and Dwight Howard, coach Mike Budenholzer has always preferred to use 10 players (blowouts one way or the other notwithstanding). In the preseason, after the return of Millsap, he played Mike Muscala, Malcolm Delaney, Thabo Sefolosha, Tim Hardaway Jr. and Kris Humphries. -- The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Much has changed between Wizards and Hawks, but some expect a ‘chippy’ opener: The 2015 NBA Eastern Conference semifinals seem like a distant memory. Many of the principal characters who starred in the drama have since changed alliances. The man who called “Game!” will soon retire and the point guard who clotheslined Bradley Beal wears a new uniform, too. Still, Beal has not forgotten about the bad blood between his Washington Wizardsand divisional rival Atlanta Hawks. -- The Washington Post

No love lost for Wizards with new-look Hawks: Key pieces may have changed between the Wizards and Atlanta Hawks, but the core players still here remember what transpired the last few regular seasons -- and in the playoffs -- before Thursday's opener. The Wizards missed the playoffs last season but if it weren't for John Wall's broken hand and wrist they were in good position to unseat the No. 1 seed in the 2015 postseason. It was during that series that Bradley Beal took over for Wall, who'd missed three of the games before they lost in six, and dealt out 22 assists and increased his scoring, too. -- CSN Mid-Atlantic

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Howard set to make hometown debut vs. Wizards

6:10 PM ET

ATLANTA -- The Washington Wizards will try to ensure the Atlanta Hawks' Dwight Howard Era gets off to a rocky start when they meet in the season opener on Thursday.

Howard was the biggest offseason acquisition for the Hawks, who hope to return to the Eastern Conference finals and beyond. Atlanta signed the 6-foot-11 center to a three-year, $70 million deal in the offseason after incumbent center Al Horford took less money to sign with the Boston Celtics.

Atlanta went 48-34 last season, finished fourth in the Eastern Conference and was swept by Cleveland in the conference semifinals. Washington went 41-41 to finish 10th in the East and missed the playoffs.

The Hawks are hopeful that the 30-year-old Howard, a native of Atlanta, can revive his career. He averaged 17.8 points, 12.7 rebounds and 2.1 blocks over his 12-year career, but slipped to 13.7 points for the Rockets last season.

"Playing at home, where people have great expectations for what is supposed to happen here, sometimes it can get a little nerve-racking," Howard said. "For me, I just try not to think about it. I just try to approach it as though it's any other game. But I know this city. They have their hopes real high on us and on me."

It's a new start for Washington, too. The Wizards fired coach Randy Wittman and hired Scott Brooks, who spent six seasons at Oklahoma City and took the Thunder to the NBA finals in 2011-12.

The Wizards are led by guard John Wall, who averaged 19.9 points and 10.2 assists last season, and Bradley Beal, who averaged 17.4 points while dealing with hip and leg issues that limited him to 55 games. Beal showed he was fully recovered in the preseason, when he effectively distributed the ball and had very few turnovers.

"Us as players are coming in with a mindset of whatever we have to do, getting it done," Wall said. "It's an all-new beginning for all of us, so we want to get off to a good start with a new coaching staff and new group of players we have on the team."

Washington is also expected to start Otto Porter, Markieff Morris and Marcin Gortat. The Wizards are hopeful that Morris can become the 3-point shooting threat the team has been missing.


The Wizards also expect to see second-year player Kelly Oubre Jr. take big strides forward and be a key player off the bench. He should play more than he did a year ago, when he averaged 11 minutes.

The Hawks had their starting five on the court at the same time in their final two preseason games. Atlanta will start Howard, forwards Paul Millsap and Kyle Korver and guards Dennis Schroder and Kent Bazemore.

Schroder will be the starter at point guard after veteran Jeff Teague was traded to Indiana. Malcolm Delaney will be the backup at point.

The Wizards play their first two games on the road, going to Memphis on Sunday, before playing at home on Wednesday against Toronto. The Hawks travel to Philadelphia for a game on Saturday afternoon.

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6 hours ago, tl;dr said:

Howard had 19 rebounds in 1 game tonight against Gortat (a solid C). 

Horford has 12 in 2 games.

I definitely think Howard is better than Horford.

They're both averaging 11 points. So much for that offensive prowess...

How long before I can go back and troll the Celtics fans? 

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