Originally posted on Crossover Chronicles  |  Last updated 11/1/12
Believe it or not, the NBA's regular season is this week. To get you ready, Crossover Chronicles will be profiling a team each day for the next few weeks. This week is the Southeast Division. Today is the Atlanta Hawks. 2011-12 Record: 40-26, lost first round Key Losses:  Joe Johnson (traded to Nets), Marvin Williams (traded to Jazz), Willie Green (traded to L.A. Clippers) Key Acquisitions:  Devin Harris (traded from Jazz), Kyle Korver (signed from Chicago), Anthony Morrow (traded from Nets) Depth Chart PG SG SF PF C Jeff Teague Devin Harris Josh Smith Zaza Pachulia Al Horford Louis Williams Kyle Korver John Jenkins Ivan Johnson Johan Petro Anthony Morrow DeShawn Stevenson Mike Scott Anthony Tolliver   The Good The Hawks are a versatile bunch. Larry Drew will be able to imagine and create whatever kind of lineup he wants this year as just about every player can play at least two positions. Josh Smith is a perfect representative of this roster. Smtih can play the three or the four and is one of the most athletically gifted players in the NBA. This is his team now with Joe Johnson shipped out in a trade and Smith playing for a new contract -- with Atlanta or otherwise. But he is not the only guy that can provide a difficult matchup for any team. Devin Harris is the ultimate hybrid point guard in the NBA as he is a player that can both be a point guard and direct a team and a solid scorer. Harris has not quite recaptured his All-Star form from 2009, but with a strong supporting cast around him, it seems like he could maintain his production from the last few years. Additionally, Louis Williams provides much the same scoring punch off the bench at the point guard position and Al Horford and Zaza Pachulia are equally capable of playing either post position and playing together when necessary. The Hawks should, with "Iso Joe" out and Larry Drew perhaps a bit more willing to draw up new plays, be an exciting team. There just are not many players on this roster who need the team to slow down. I suspect Jeff Teague and Devin Harris will have this team getting out on the break where it can really take advantage of all of Josh Smith's talents. The Bad The problem is the Hawks gave up a lot of depth to gain that versatility, especially in the front court. Atlanta does not quite know if it can depend on Johan Petro, a player who has always been a role player but never quite much more than that... and sometimes not even a role player. That means the center position will largely be manned by Zaza Pachulia and Al Horford almost exclusively. Ivan Johnson proved to be a nice energy player, but is Josh Smith able to play more power forward? Versatility is both a gift and a curse, it would seem. Atlanta is in the process it seems of rebuilding its roster in preparation for some future changes while still holding onto the (recent) past glory of the Hawks playoff runs. No Joe Johnson means there are still some shifting in the offense away from Joe Johnson and toward Al Horford, Josh Smith and, possibly, Devin Harris. This seems like a half-hearted rebuild. The Hawks knew they needed to make a change because the team was not doing much better than a strong regular season and a first-round exit or second-round exit to the elite teams. Change needed to happen. But did the Hawks begin a rebuilding project or consign themselves to mediocrity?  The Ugly That is the question the Hawks are left answering. And it remains a big question for this team throughout the season. Josh Smith's free agency looms this summer and he has made it pretty clear that he will explore his options and hit free agency next summer. Again, Atlanta has one foot in the Playoffs and competing among the East's elite and one foot out. That is the struggle for Atlanta at the moment. Where does this Hawks team go next year? Where does it go this year? The mystery of which way this balancing act goes likely has the Hawks a bit on edge. There is already speculation that arguably Atlanta's best player, Josh Smith, is on the trade block as the team does not want to lose the talented and athletic forward for nothing. That might make or break Atlanta's season. And in the end, the Hawks' bid to get better and into the elite of the Eastern Conference does not seem to be accomplished. Atlanta is still a middle-of-the-road team in the Eastern Conference. That is probably not where the Hawks want to be any more. Have thoughts or predictions on the Hawks? Leave them in the comments below or drop us a line @CrossoverNBA on Twitter or join the discussion by using the hashtag #HawksDay. We will be back with a closer look at the Hawks throughout the day. [follow]
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Rams owner buys massive 520,000-acre Texas ranch

Cam Newton explains why he did not dive on fumble

George Karl’s agent rips Kings, wants broadcaster reprimanded

WATCH: Popovich has funny reaction to New Hampshire results

Suns vets pull packing peanut prank on rookie Devin Booker

Teammate gives Manning final completion ball from Super Bowl

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Report: Ole Miss Football cited in 13 of 28 department violations by NCAA

Larry Sanders to consider NBA comeback after other interests stabilize

The NCAAB power rankings

SEC begins crying foul over Jim Harbaugh’s spring break plans at Michigan

Marc Gasol reportedly out indefinitely with broken foot

Patriots waive Montee Ball despite never officially re-signing running back

WATCH: Blackhawks coach walks out of press conference

Greg McElroy: Cam Newton 'quit on his team'

Tennis umpires secretly banned over gambling issues

WATCH: Dancing Kentucky fan slides down rail, fails

Clemson LB has great response to NFL draft analyst's criticism

Former Aggies QB Kyle Allen reveals culture problems at Texas A&M

Roy Williams collapses during game vs. BC

Panthers TE Greg Olsen shaves off his playoff beard

Derek Fisher thanks Knicks in statement

Miami Heat to honor Shaq by retiring his number 32

Oakland Raiders release Nate Allen

B.J. Penn announces he will return at UFC 197

Bring back the Dunk Contest

NBA News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

The NCAAB power rankings

Report: Kings to keep coach George Karl

Was Alain Vigneault right about NHL's lack of punishment towards Wayne Simmonds?

Report: Knicks fire coach Derek Fisher

The best and worst commercials from Super Bowl 50

Best and worst from Super Bowl 50

Six best plays from Super Bowl 50

Eli doesn't look thrilled as Peyton wins Super Bowl

Did Beyonce almost fall down during Super Bowl halftime show?

Curry to serve as drummer for Panthers

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker