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Official Hawks January Game Thread!

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January starts with 5 roadies on the west coast...Suns, Blazers, Clippers, Lakers and Nuggets.

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For the Atlanta Hawks, John Collins Keeps Getting Better

 

by Chris Guest9 hours agoFollow @drcguest

Soaring Down South  


 

The Atlanta Hawks might’ve picked the steal of the draft when they selected John Collins 19th overall out of Wake Forest University.

As has been stated previously, Collins is a dark horse NBA Rookie of the Year candidate and is probably 4th in the pecking order behind the breakout performances of Ben Simmons, Jayson Tatum and Donovan Mitchell.

Despite not putting up the flashy numbers of Simmons and Mitchell and not having the all-around impact on a playoff-bound team like Tatum on the Celtics, Collins is quietly putting together an excellent first season in the league and should be bound for a First-Team All-Rookie selection at the end of the year.

Ever since missing two weeks with a shoulder injury, JC has picked up right where he left off by rebounding and dunking with malice, and improving his all-around game with solid performances in the final weeks of 2017.

As we approach the halfway mark of the Hawks’ season, it has become clear that Collins is an important building block for the future, as he already looks to be one of the best players on the Atlanta Hawks and myriad statistics back up this claim.

Collins is up to 689 minutes played in the 2017-18 season, which ranks as fifth on the team behind only stalwart starters Taurean Prince (1125), Dennis Schröder (1065) and Kent Bazemore (1025) as well as sixth man Marco Belinelli (866).

A rash of personal fouls early in the season for JC (at one point he was leading the league) curtailed his minutes to start the year, but he has scaled back that jittery rookie behavior and turned into a solid defender who can control himself without resorting to silly fouls.

As was the case last time we checked in on his stats, Collins is first on the Hawks in Player Efficiency Rating, which is a measure of per-minute production normalized to provide a league average of 15. JC clocks in with a magnificent 21.2 PER, which paces the Hawks by more than 2 points and is 25th overall in the league and easily the highest among rookies.

When Collins is on the floor, the Hawks are a completely different basketball team. As the most threatening pick-and-roll finisher on the team, Collins draws a lot of attention, and his usage percentage has also increased since early in the season, as he is now 4th on the Hawks in usage at 20.2 percent, behind only Schröder (29.3%), Bazemore (21.7%) and Belinelli (21.5%).

In fact, Collins (along with his fellow 2017 draftmate Tyler Dorsey) should really have the ball in his hands more, so he can work on his all-around game and perhaps work on his midrange shot, which has looked pretty good so far in his young career.

Another of Collins’s major strengths on the offensive end is his innate ability to fight through traffic and nab offensive rebounds at an impressive clip. JC always seems to be in the right place at the right time to grab boards on the offensive end and provide his team the opportunity to score some second chance points.

Collins has a whopping 90 offensive rebounds on the year, which is first among rookies by a wide margin and clocks in at 11th overall in the league – an impressive feat for a rookie. With those 90 OREBS, which is also first on the Hawks, Collins has an enormous 15 percent offensive rebound percentage, which puts him at 5th in the entire league alongside elite rebounders like DeAndre Jordan and Andre Drummond.

JC is not just a one-trick-pony rebounder on the offensive end though, as his lethal finishing puts him in exclusive company in terms of field goal percentage as well. Of Collins’s 142 made field goals, which ranks 5th on the Hawks, 62 of those are dunks and his field goal percentage is sky-high as a result.

Among qualified Hawks, Collins is leading in field goal percentage with a muscular 59.7 percent – only Miles Plumlee in just over 300 minutes and roughly 180 fewer field goal attempts has a higher FG% of 61.0.

That 59.7 FG% ranks Collins 4th in the NBA in that category, and his 11.3 points per game ranks him 5th on the Hawks. A combination of solid production in terms of scoring and incredible efficiency makes Collins a valuable asset for any team – and one of the best players on the Hawks.

Coming out of the draft, JC was not lauded as a net positive on the defensive end. However, through the first 36 games of the season, Collins has been remarkably solid defensively.

As expected, his A+ rebounding also extends to the defensive end, where his 21.1 percent defensive rebounding percentage is second on the team – only behind Dewayne Dedmon’s 27.5%, who has played 200 fewer minutes than Collins and has been out with an injury for more than a month.

Combined with his offensive rebounding prowess, Collins’s total rebounding percentage of 18.0% places him at 15th in the NBA – again, an amazing number for a rookie through the first 36 games of his career.

Another area of expertise for Collins has been his shot-blocking, as his 32 blocks lead the Hawks and his 4.1 block percentage is tied with Serge Ibaka for 10th in the league.

Overall, Collins has been perhaps the Hawks’ best player, and his 120 offensive rating per 100 possessions is 2nd on the team behind only surprising rookie Tyler Cavanaugh at 128. Collins is also one of 6 Hawks with a net positive rating per 100 possessions, as his +8 rating is highest among qualified players on the Hawks.

Collins also has the highest win share total on the Hawks with 2.4, and his nickname of John the Baptist (coined by Hawks TV play-by-play announcer) is easily the best on the team.

JC is shaping up to be the face of the Hawks franchise, and the promising start to his career only cements his status as a future star for the Hawks.

m2Falcons, Drew4719 and jayu70 like this

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On 1/1/2018 at 3:35 PM, blkbigdog35 said:

I'm just hoping that Bud starts to increase Collins minutes and for God's sake I would rather see Dorsey than Delaney.

agree let Dorsey get his feet wet

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I was thinking Suns, nuggets and Lakers. I know they got the blazers at home but in Portland with lillard back will be tough.

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5 minutes ago, blkbigdog35 said:

I was thinking Suns, nuggets and Lakers. I know they got the blazers at home but in Portland with lillard back will be tough.

It's hard to win in Denver, that altitude plus it'll be the last game of the trip.

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1 minute ago, jayu70 said:

It's hard to win in Denver, that altitude plus it'll be the last game of the trip.

True didn't realize it was the last stop. That game may get really ugly.

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Posted (edited)

You've gotta be ******* kidding me. I can't even believe how badly we just self-destructed. A few minutes ago I felt great about starting off the road trip with a W. then that happened.

this team is maddeningly inconsistent. There are times you see the potential and times where it's just dumb baskball being played by the guys out there.

Edited by Drew4719
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6 minutes ago, Drew4719 said:

You've gotta be ******* kidding me. I can't even believe how badly we just self-destructed. A few minutes ago I felt great about starting off the road trip with a W. then that happened.

this team is maddeningly inconsistent. There are times you see the potential and times where it's just dumb baskball being played by the guys out there.

Yeah just a total meltdown, definitely need a closer on this team.

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On 1/2/2018 at 11:38 PM, blkbigdog35 said:

Yeah just a total meltdown, definitely need a closer on this team.

The Hawks need more talent, period - that's what we are shooting for. 

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On 1/2/2018 at 6:04 PM, blkbigdog35 said:

Yeah curious to see how they handle this trip.

gonna be tough tonight

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Dennis had a serious brain fart in that Sun' game but he's trending upwards from the start of the season.

Making good decisions with the ball
During the month of November, Schroder averaged 6.6 assists (11th most in NBA) and 3.4 turnovers (9th most in NBA) per game. The result was an assist-to-turnover ratio of 1.9, which ranked in the bottom third of NBA starting point guards for the month.
During this stretch, he struggled in the PNR (pick-and-roll) actions when his first option (scoring at the basket) and second option (passing to the screener) were not available. Not all of the blame can be placed on Schroder as he must rely on the players around him to find the open spaces when he breaks down the defense. But Schroder still must take care of the basketball and limit live ball turnovers that result in easy transition scores for the opponent.
In December, Schroder’s game changed as he nearly cut his turnovers is half. Importantly, he didn’t cut his turnovers by playing more passively. His scoring continued to be strong, his assists increased from 6.6 per game to 7.0 per game and he turned the ball over just 1.6 times per game. The result for December, and assist-to-turnover ratio of 4.3, which ranked first among NBA point guards who started more than five games in December. In a less-is-more approach, Dennis is showing more restraint by trusting his teammates on the floor and making the easy pass to the shooters on the floor with him. Sometimes passing up a decent shot for himself, he is finding better opportunities for his teammates.

 

Improved Play on Defense
This season has been a struggle for the Hawks in general on the defensive end of the floor. Through the end of November, Atlanta ranked 26th in points allowed per game, 29th in points allowed per possession and 27th in defensive rating. During the month of December, the Hawks defense was better: 23rd in points allowed per game, 20th in points allowed per possession and 18th in defensive rating. Again, the defensive improvement was a team effort but improved defensive play by Schroder was an integral part.
Through the end of November, Schroder posted a defensive rating of 114.9, the worst defensive rating among all NBA point guards. In December, his defensive rating improved to 107.2 which ranked him in the middle of the league among NBA starting points guards. While the Schroder’s defense, and the Hawks’ defense in general, still must get better, December was certainly a step in the right direction.



Isn't this what we want to see? IMPROVEMENT and DEVELOPMENT from a young player in his weakest areas as the season progresses.

https://twitter.com/peachtreehoops/status/948932066917453824

Drew4719 and blkbigdog35 like this

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I am away from my house at my sons aau tourney so cant watch can someone update here and there

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Report: Hawks to guarantee Taylor, Cavanaugh

 

Jeff Siegel

MSN  


 

Jaime Valdez-USA TODAY Sports

Two non-guaranteed contracts will be sticking around

Per a report from ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, the Atlanta Hawks are planning to guarantee the contracts for Isaiah Taylor and Tyler Cavanaugh:

Taylor was signed right before the beginning of the season and has been a consistent member of the rotation all year, so it’s no surprise that they’ll hold onto him for at least the rest of this season. He has a non-guaranteed second year as well, which the Hawks can decide upon at a later date.

Cavanaugh was just recently converted from a 2-way player to a regular contract and also has a non-guaranteed year remaining after this one. Since arriving in Atlanta in early November, he’s also been a constant presence, made larger by the Hawks’ injury concerns in the front court.

With 15 fully-guaranteed players, the Hawks will not have the flexibility a few other teams have to sign 10-day contracts or to use their Room Exception to bring in another player. Speculation continues to swirl about the futures of many of the veterans on the team as we get closer to the trade deadline in early February, which could possibly open up a spot for a flyer if general manager Travis Schlenk decides to go in that direction.

 

© Jaime Valdez-USA TODAY Sports

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