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Blogging with the enemy: Q&A with Peachtree Hoops

With one day left before the Heat kick off thier 2009 Playoff campaign in Atlanta, who else to answer some questions about our upcoming playoff series with the Hawks then Drew, the head honcho over at Peachtree Hoops, SB Nation's Atlanta Hawks page.

 

DpDAfter winning 3 out of 4 games against Miami during the regular season, are you confidant that the Hawks will have similar success in the playoffs?

Drew- Certainly confident the Hawks are the better team, but in no way does that fact allow me to ignore that the Heat have the best player. If I was a Heat fan, I would probably form some kind of religion around Wade. And if any Heat player does step it up, I am first going to give credit to Wade for allowing him to get easier shots. 

Plus, we are going to see a different D-Wade than we saw in those four games. We are going to see playoff Wade. That said, we are going to see a different Hawks team. They know the intensity of the playoffs. They know the energy they need to bring. And with those games in the regular season where they “contained” Wade to build on, I think the Hawks are going in expecting to win. And that is the first step to success….I hope.

DpD- What do you think about Dwyane Wade and what are you expecting from him in this series?

Drew- Churches should be formed in honor of Dwayne Wade. I am expecting him to avg. 35-ish points a game with two monster games that may or may not make Mike Fratello’s head explode. I also think Wade knows how much the team relies on him, and I have seen him press, ball hog, shoot too much, whatever you want to call it. I don’t expect to see that Wade very often, but maybe two games would be nice.

DpD- I am a big Joe Johnson fan, and I don’t think he gets enough recognition around the league, just like Brandon Roy.  Do you think he will have a big series against Miami?  How can we shut him down, or at least slow him up?

Drew- I think other matchups are more in the Hawks favor, but I still see Joe going for 20-25 a game. Maybe one game in the 30s. Mike Woodson runs way too much of the offense through Joe for him not to get his points. As far as shutting down Joe, you do not want him hitting his three pointers because then you just won’t do it. And giving Joe “attention” on defense does not do much to slow him down either. He methodically penetrates defenses. Kind of the anti Josh Smith. What does frustrate Joe is hard double teams as he enters the paint. He does not pass well out of them and usually forces his shot regardless of who is guarding him. Don’t do that ok?

DpD- The Hawks seemed almost unbeatable at home for most of the season, but of your 10 home losses, 3 of them came down the stretch and some of your final wins were very close.  Do you still feel the Hawks have the same edge at home?

Drew- I think Phillips is going to be incredibly loud. Any edge they may have lost will be back. It is the only guarantee I willing to lay down.

DpD- Other then Dwyane Wade, who on the Heat are you concerned with? Why?

Drew- Anyone who wants to hit a three pointer. Wade is going to require the Hawks to leave people relatively open. So if someone gets hot, they are the one I am concerned about. And if it is Chris Quinn, I am going to cry.

DpD- One matchup that I feel is going to be huge in this series is between our point guards.  Who do you think has the edge between the 'crafty veteran' Mike Bibby and the Heat's amazing rookie Mario Chalmers?

Drew- I think Mike Bibby has the edge because he has proven he can deliver. That being said Chalmers is going to have plenty of chances to prove otherwise. Mike Bibby is bad at defense. But the Hawks have known that all season. Good point guards are able to out perform the extra measures the Hawks take to make up for Bibby, but don’t think for a second, the Hawks are just going to let a point guard beat them. They have lots of practice playing good team defense without five good defenders.

Anyway to answer your question, I think Chalmers will edge Bibby three out of seven games, but the crafty veteran will prevail allowing the Hawks to drastically overpay him this summer.

DpD- This is where I would ask for your pick...but common sense tells me that you would be going with your home team considering how close this series looks to be.  That being said, how far do you see Atlanta getting in the Playoffs?

Drew- I would be impressed with a competitive second round series with LeBron and the Cavs.

 

Big thanks to Drew from Peachtree Hoops for taking the time to answer my questions.  You can find my answers to his Heat questions HERE.