Well, we struggled last night in Atlanta against the Hawks and lost that game. But I look at it like this – it was a regular-season game that we got out of the way and we’ll be ready when we see these guys in the playoffs.
We pretty much know that we’re going to be the No. 4 seed in the playoffs and the Hawks will probably be No. 5, so we’ll see these guys in the first round. I know everybody was making last night’s game out like a playoff preview, but it’s just so hard to say that because the playoffs have such a different feel with the intensity and the passion. If you’ve never been in the playoffs you wouldn’t understand how teams fight and play with desperation.
I know when we see the Hawks the next time that it will be a different animal. Hopefully by then we would have had our entire team healthy, rested and ready to go at these guys full strength. Because we have so many dudes out hurt right now, all of our starters are having to go 40 minutes a night and I think it took a toll on our energy and defense.
I’ll give Atlanta some credit for playing better defense so far. They are going with a bigger front line and making it tough for us to get clean looks in the post sometime. They’ve held us to some low scores this season, but we’ll attack them harder in the playoffs and get what we’re looking for. As long as we stay focused on playing inside-out we’ll get whatever we’re looking for offensively.
Yeah, the Hawks beat us three out of four times, and I’m sure a lot of people out there will probably be picking them to beat us in the first round. It was that way the year that we got to the NBA Finals with people picking us to lose to Philly, Boston and Cleveland. But we won them all and got close to winning a title.
It’s OK if we’re flying under the radar and not the pick of many people. I feel like the way we’re being portrayed doesn’t warrant a lot of respect, but the teams who play us respect us. They know what we’re capable of.
So, yes, I can’t wait for the playoffs to roll around. It’s a different beast come playoff time and I know our team will crank it up another level. Before these last two losses, we had been playing much better and hitting our stride. Now, if we can just get some rest and get some guys back healthy and in the rotation, I think we can hit the playoffs with a hot hand.
Well, I’m outta here. We’ve got Charlotte on Friday and then back on the road up in Toronto on Sunday. Only three more road games to go and four at home and then the real season begins!!! Yuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhh!!!