You are the general manager of a team where your best player is headed for free agency two years from now and your team plays one bad stretch of basketball to fall behind the LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh-lead Miami Heat. So what are you going to do?
Nope, not go to Disney World (even though that obnoxious mouse lives in your backyard).
You blow up the roster and start all over again -- and, oh yeah, pick up a few players who have made it their business to destroy that third place team behind you in the standings. It's kind of like that same knee-jerk reaction you'd expect from the TSA, feeling up your 90-year-old grandma who is hard of hearing and opted out by going "what? huh?" when she saw one of those new-fangled see-you-naked machines under the guise of keeping the skies "safe".
Dwight Howard and a whole new supporting cast will invade Philips Arena for a Monday night matchup against the Atlanta Hawks (7:00 PM, SportSouth, 97.9 FM). Let's just say that this team looks absolutely nothing like the team that the Hawks beat in Orlando for the first time in like a
zillion, dozen, OK just two years that seem like 12 in their matchup earlier in the month.
Vinsanity, Rashard Lewis, Mickael Pietrus and Marcin Gortat left the building only to be replaced by Jason Richardson (18.9 ppg vs. Atlanta), Hedo Turkoglu (12.7 ppg vs. Atlanta) and Gilbert Arenas (22.2 ppg vs. Atlanta). Earl Clark was also part of one the deals, which sent a first round pick and cash to the Phoenix Suns. All this for losing a whopping five out of six games.
I wonder what will happen when the streak goes to 2-of-10 or 3-of-12 as the new guys struggle to integrate into coach Stan Van Gundy's system on the fly? Oh yeah, apparently Orlando isn't quite done making moves yet. Off with their heads!
In any event, the revamped team will play together for the first time on Monday night at Philips Arena against your Atlanta Hawks, who are coming off of a terrible, terrible, terrible loss to the terrible, terrible, terrible New Jersey Nets on Sunday afternoon in Newark. Did I mention that the Nets were terrible?
The bricks were flying all over the place for Atlanta in Brick City yesterday. Atlanta had 14 field goals in the first quarter, but went on a siesta the rest of the way, connecting on just 15 more in the final 36 minutes of the basketball game.
As terrible as Atlanta has been on the road of late, the Hawks have soared at home, winning six straight entering Monday night's matchup at the Highlight Factory. They hope to take advantage of an Orlando team that is short on chemistry and defense right now and make it a lucky seven.