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Mini Game Preview: Hawks @ Hornets

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Published: November 21, 2009

Once again, the Hornets get to face a team that walloped them just a week ago, as the Eastern Conference-leading Hawks come to the Hive tonight.  In the previous game(Jeff Bowers first without CP) the Hornets displayed the first glimmerings of fight all season, fighting off runs and keeping in contact with the Hawks until the last 6 minutes of the game.

The Hornets will have a little help on their side, as the Hawks played last night against the rough and tumble Rockets, pulling the win out with 0.7 seconds to go.

Regardless, the Hornets will have some difficulty matching up with the Hawks.  Josh Smith is an athletic big of the sort that typically gives West trouble, and Devin Brown isn’t likely to be able to check Joe Johnson.  The Hawks also have few obvious weaknesses as they are top five in turnover rate, rebound rate, offensive efficiency, and offensive rebounding.  So far their only real weakness has been the long ball, (34% as a team) so if you go under picks and play off of them a little, they may settle for long jumpers.  Or so you can hope.

They are also only average(15th in the league) at defensive rebounding, so I suppose one can hold out hope for another offensive rebound barrage like last game, but I have a feeling Josh Smith and Al Horford will give more resistance on the glass than Amare “Too Cool to Jump” Stoudemire and Channing “I would rather be a guard” Frye.

So, it all sounds a little grim, but this is the NBA.  You slow down a couple things they like to do and knock down the shots you generate, and anything is possible.

Enjoy the Game.

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