Brett LaGree from the Hawks TrueHoop site Hoopinion is back for a quick final round of Bloggers Talk where I ask him about his thoughts on Atlanta’s chances in the playoffs.
NAS: Do you get the sense, especially with Joe Johnson’s FA status, that this is the last chance for this core group of guys to go on some kind of meaningful run in April/May?
It’s weird, in that, because no one (Joe Johnson maybe included) knows what Joe Johnson is even likely to decide to do in free agency either we’re seeing this group for the last time (I think it’ll take at least two significant trades to reconstitute this team if he leaves.) or we’re going to see this group for a long time because there won’t be any money left over if he re-signs.
I know the Hawks would have their MLE I just don’t think they’d use it.
NAS: After the past two years of playoff basketball for the Hawks, what would you consider an “acceptable” ending to the season?
It’s unreasonable to expect the Hawks to beat either Cleveland or Orlando in a seven-game series so getting to the Conference Finals would be a tremendous achievement. Playing a competitive series against either of those two would be acceptable. Especially competing against the Magic, who are both better than the Hawks in absolute terms and a terrible matchup for the Hawks.