Found February 13, 2013 on
Fox Sports South:
ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) -- The Atlanta Hawks have had trouble at times playing consistently against struggling teams.
They chose a great time to jettison a bad habit.
Josh Smith had 30 points and 10 rebounds and Al Horford added 26 points and 12 rebounds as the Hawks blew past the Orlando Magic 108-76 on Wednesday night.
The Hawks led by as many as 38 points and decimated the Magic defense on the way to earning their ninth consecutive regular-season win over their division rivals. In Atlanta's last game before the All-Star break, it was a signature night for Smith, who could be an asset the Hawks may shop around the trade deadline.
"Smith is a professional," Hawks coach Larry Drew said. "He's been in this situation before. During this time of season, rumors do fly. His name has come up before. He's handled it very well. He's handling it very well right now. The last thing we can do is allow any type of rumor to be a distraction. That's my job."
Jameer Nelson and Andrew Nicholson led the Magic with 10 points apiece. No other Orlando players reached double-figures.
The Magic have now lost 24 of their last 27 games. It was the capstone event to an unpleasant day.
Already ravished by various player injuries this season, they were dealt a different kind of blow Wednesday when the NBA announced that forward Hedo Turkoglu would be suspended 20 games for taking a steroid. Turkoglu, who has already missed 31 games this season because of injury and illness, will now be out until late March.
Whether it was that latest dose of bad news or not that led to the lackluster effort, Magic guard J.J. Redick said that after a decent first quarter, nothing went right against the Hawks.
"We were down, definitely down. Nothing more to say. We got punked," Redick said.
Horford and Smith scored at will both inside and from the outside, and had a combined point total that equaled the Magic's team total after three quarters.
It was Smith's third 30-point game this season and 22nd double-double of the year. He now has 200 double-doubles for his career. He said his effort was spurred by his teammates.
"We had an understanding with each other that we were not going to take this game for granted," Smith said. "We needed to be able to come out and play aggressive on both ends of the floor and that is what we did.
"I was just playing relaxed and didn't force anything. I took what the defense game me and everything was working tonight."
It didn't seem like it would be such a lopsided outing early on.
The Hawks started the game just 1 for 10 from the field and had just a six-point cushion after one. They surged in the second, though, outscoring the Magic 32-17 as they built a 21-point halftime lead.
Orlando never recovered.
Horford and Smith combined for 30 points and 17 rebounds in the half, just a shade under the 36 points and 18 rebounds the Magic had as a team
Magic coach Jacque Vaughn made it clear that as bad as things are going for his team right now, he isn't expecting to get a team back after the break that has given up on the rest of the season.
"It's just a break, not a vacation," Vaughn said. "It's a break to clear your mind a little bit, let your body rejuvenate, and get ready for the remaining games At the end of the day, as simple as it can be you have to be ready to compete every night, especially with the remaining games that we have."
Horford said there was no question that he felt like the Hawks answered an important call heading into the stretch run of the season. Their first game back after the break is a tough one against East Conference leader Miami.
"Coach Drew challenged us today," he said. "These are the types of games that can get away from you and we wanted to come out and set the tone. ... It was very important (the last two wins). I felt we let a couple get away these last couple of weeks so we had to make it up."
NOTES: Hawks G Devin Harris was whistled for his first technical foul of the season in the first quarter. ... G Kyle Korver has now made at least one 3-pointer in each of his last 45 games, the longest active streak in the NBA. ... The Magic fell to 5-18 this season when their opponent scores at least 100 points.
BEST OF MAXIM
AROUND THE WEB
Add the San Antonio Spurs to the long, long list of teams interested in acquiring Atlanta Hawks forward Josh Smith.
Yahoo Sports reported:
"The Spurs are among the teams with interest in Hawks forward Josh Smith,
a source told Yahoo! Sports. Keep in mind, Hawks general manager Danny
Ferry was previously with the Spurs."
This was the meat of the rumor tucked into...
The Josh Smith trade derby could include the Dallas Mavericks. CBS Sports' Ken Berger reported that the Mavs have had internal discussions about acquiring the Atlanta Hawks' star forward. However, Berger wasn't sure if the Hawks and Mavs have discussed a deal.
With Mark Cuban saying the "Bank of Cuban" is open, it's logical that the Mavs would be mentioned...
ATLANTA Over the next nine days, you'll be inundated with a slew of rumor-based pieces speculating on the trade status of Hawks forward Josh Smith, who'll be an unrestricted free agent at season's end.
This isn't one of 'em.
Instead, we'll operate under the highly plausible scenario that Smith remains with Atlanta past Feb. 21 (NBA trade deadline) and...
While the Brooklyn Nets are reported to be in hot pursuit of Hawks’ Josh Smith, it is being reported that the San Antonio Spurs are also among the mix of teams interested.
According to Yahoo! Sports:
The Spurs are among the teams with interest in Hawks forward Josh Smith, a source told Yahoo! Sports. Keep in mind, Hawks general manager Danny Ferry was previously with the Spurs.
ATLANTA With a 108-76 thumping of Orlando on Wednesday, the Atlanta Hawks head into the NBA All-Star Break with a bit of momentum and at least one major unanswered question.
At 29-22 and in sixth place in the Eastern Conference, the Hawks have won three out of four but sit only two games behind Indiana for third place, as the NBA trading deadline looms on Feb. 21. With 31 games...
Josh Smith activated full-troll-mode in Dallas, where he drained a career-high four three-pointers (on just five tries) as the Hawks defeated the Mavericks 105-101. Needless to say, he also did some really stupid ****; even his made three-pointers were actually stupid ****, but they happened to not be airballs somehow. Smith didn’t do nearly as much stupid **** as the Mavericks...
The Brooklyn Nets are currently the fifth seed in the East and capped out for the foreseeable future, because of over 300 million dollars committed in the off-season. This involved adding or keeping, Deron Williams, Joe Johnson, Brook Lopez, Kris Humphries, Gerald Wallace and other minor players. However, word is that they are going hard after Atlanta Hawks’ star forward, Josh...
There are plenty of excuses for the Magic coming out and laying an egg Wednesday night against the Hawks.
Could it have been looking forward to a few days off with the All-Star Break coming up this weekend? Could it have been the surprise announcement just a few hours before tip off that Hedo Turkoglu would be suspended for the next 20 games for testing positive for an anabolic...
FOX Sports South: The Hawks knew that the situation with Josh Smith, who will become a free agent this summer, was going to come to a head at some point. How do you think theyve dealt the trade rumors?
I think theyve dealt with it as well as you possibly can.
They made their presentation to Smith before the season started. One thing we did not hear about on a week-to-week basis...
Today February 13, 2013 The 28-22 Atlanta Hawks take on the 15-36 Orlando Magic. The Hawks have won 8 straight against the Magic coming into this game. The Atlanta Hawks got off to a slow start shooting 1-10. After that they went 6 for their next 10, taking the lead and control of the game. At the half the Hawks led 57-36. Atlanta led by Al Horford who already recorded his 27th double...