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Game Preview: Atlanta Hawks vs San Antonio Spurs

The AT&T center welcomes Atlanta, a mercurial group from the Eastern Conference with a bird-like mascot and as many positives as negatives.

Kevin C. Cox

And just like that we are looking at the last regular season game against an eastern conference team. Phew. Now it only gets easier right? This year the eastern conference is an angry mastodon bent on world destruction... Ok I can only take this joke so far. The eastern conference is more like a mastodon's head attached to a poodle. (You are welcome, LeBron, and thanks for reading.) Now I am not saying the eastern conference is bad. (Ok you got me - I am saying the eastern conference is bad.) But tonight’s opponent, the Atlanta Hawks, currently sits in 5th place of their conference and are 17 games behind the leader. Go over to the west and that number would be good for 8th place... maybe. That is without even mentioning strength of schedule.

Why aren’t the Atlanta Hawks called the Atlanta Peaches? The Hawk is such a generic mascot. I don’t have the exact stats in front of me, but there must be about 67 billion high schools with some version of a hawk as a mascot. Why not go for something more original that screams Georgia? As a result the Atlanta Peaches would flip merchandise like hotcakes. Seems like such a waste. Maybe Danny Ferry can do something about this. Speaking of Danny Ferry, what in the raging fudge is he doing in Atlanta?

Am I the only one who is getting skeptical of this guy? The Hawks have been mired in mediocrity since William Tecumseh Sherman invented Coca Cola before going to Six Flags to ride some roller coasters. Have they changed since then? No. They still have meh written all over them. Al Horford and Josh Smith are great players but they aren't like GREAT players. And after that? It is a solid roster, but one that won't be able to beat the Heat's machine of destruction. So maybe I am a little pissed that the Hawks didn't make the big trade everyone and their cousin thought they were going to make before the trade deadline.

The birdies now have two pretty sucky options. One is to re-sign Josh Smith for a boat load of money and somehow build a contender with the finical limitations that contract will bring. The other is to let their second-best player walk for nothing. But what do I know? Josh Smith is not the only free agent on the Hawks this summer. Basically their whole roster except for the aforementioned Horford and the notforementioned Louis Williams will be free agents this year. So maybe Danny Ferry and his minions have some master plan worked out for next year, and the Hawks will be juiced for the 2013-2014 season. It is all speculation. And while speculation is a fun thing to do at a bar throwing back fuzzy navels, it is a bit aggravating when one has been down this road before and is completely sober.

Game Analysis:

At this point in the season Pop could theoretically grab a magic marker, draw a jersey on Patty Mills' towel and give the towel serious minutes. So the “probable starters” section below should probably read “this is wrong”. On the flip side, the Hawks' roster is equally unpredictable. Horford needs to be ready for the playoffs so he might see limutes or even or nomutes. What I am getting at is game analysis for a game this late in the season against two teams that will almost certainly not meet in the playoffs is kind of like trying to predict what the weather will be like on a random Monday in Warsaw in the year 3024.

So, yeah, Spurs by 7.75


Almost Certainly Not The Starters
PG: Tony Parker
SG: Danny Green
SF: Kawhi Leonard
PF: Tiago Splitter
C: Tim Duncan

Key "Bench" Players
Patty Mills' Towel
Boris Diaw
Stephen Jackson

Head Coach
Gregg Popovich


Also not the Starters
PG: Devin Harris
SG: Jeff Teague
SF: Kyle Korver
PF: Josh Smith
C: Al Horford

Key Bench Players
Ivan Johnson
DeShawn Stevenson
Ted Turner

Head Coach
Larry Drew

The Clipper's perspective can be found here @ Peachtree Hoops

Get your San Antonio Spurs tickets here!

Game Prediction: Spurs by 7.75

As always, Tony must dominate Fisher, and NBA league pass is recommended for those who are willing to pony up the cash. Almost every Spurs game will be broadcast there, which is especially helpful for those of us who aren't in the San Antonio area. Please don't post links to illegal game feeds in the game thread. Links to illegal feeds are not permitted on SBNation, but you can probably find them out there on the internets if you're resourceful and desperate.