Fantasy Basketball 2010-2011 Team Preview: Atlanta Hawks (9/13/10)

The Hawks didn’t make many changes this offseason and the fantasy options on the team should perform very similarly to last season.  The biggest change to the club was the firing of Mike Woodson, who was replaced by Larry Drew.  I’ve read a few reports that indicate that Drew is trying to implement more of a motion offense and hoping to cut down on the isolation plays, which isn’t good for Joe Johnson owners.  Mike Bibby should return to the starting point guard spot, but Jeff Teague is making a claim for more playing time.  Joe Johnson will start at SG, Marvin Williams at SF, Josh Smith at PF and Al Horford at C.  Jamal Crawford will again be the team’s valuable sixth man.  Johnson, Smith and Horford are all top fantasy options this year.

Projected Fantasy Depth Chart
PG:  Mike Bibby, Jeff Teague
SG:  Joe Johnson, Jamal Crawford
SF:  Marvin Williams, Maurice Evans
PF:  Josh Smith
C:  Al Horford, Zaza Pachulia, Etan Thomas

2009 Team Stats
Pace:   #27, 91.0 (avg. 92.7)
Offensive Rating:   #2, 111.9 (avg. 107.6)
Defensive Rating:   #13, 106.7 (avg. 107.6)
Team eFG%:   #12, 50.6 (avg. 50.1)
Offensive Rebounding:   #5, 28.2 (avg. 26.3)
Defensive Rebounding:   #24, 72.7 (73.7)
Opponent’s eFG%:   #16, 49.6 (avg. 50.1)
Points Per Game:   #12, 101.7 (avg. 100.4)

Playing Time and Usage Rates
Usage rate illustrates a player’s involvement in the team’s offense.
Player (2009 MPG)       Usage (2009/Career)
Bibby (27.4)                        16.1/21.8
Teague (10.1)                     19.1/19.1
Johnson (38.0)                   26.3/23.3
Crawford (31.1)                  25.8/23.4
Williams (30.5)                   15.5/18.2
Smith (35.4)                       22.2/22.1
Horford (35.1)                   17.6/16.7

Mike Bibby is winding down his career in Atlanta and if Jeff Teague can develop any kind of shot at all this year Bibby is likely done.  Bibby put up career lows in MPG and Usage rate in 2009 and it’s probably down from here.   If Larry Drew is successful in implementing a system where the ball moves continuously, Joe Johnson could see his usage rate decline.  Williams, Smith and Horford should see usages rates for 2010 that equal their 2009 figures.


Shooting Ability and Shot Location
Player      Career eFG%          Career 3PT            Jumper/Inside
Bibby           49.5                  1.5/4.0 (37.5%)         93/7
Teague        41.2                 .4/1.6 (21.9%)           61/39
Johnson       49.3                 1.5/4.1 (37.3%)         79/21
Crawford     47.5                 1.8/5.0 (35.1%)         82/18
Williams      46.8                  .3/1.1 (30.4%)           61/39
Smith          47.5                  .3/1.0 (26.6%)          36/64
Horford       52.8                           0/0                    51/49

Jeff Teague’s 41.2 eFG% was a disappointment last season and he has to improve on that number if he wants to overtake Mike Bibby for the starting point guard spot.  Johnson and Crawford are both solid jumpshooters.  Marvin Williams is a below average shooter.  Josh Smith has topped 50.0 eFG% the last two years since he decided to abandon the jumpshot and started taking it to the basket.  Al Horford will continue to put up a solid eFG% with most of his shots coming inside.

Bibby, Johnson and Crawfod can all hit the three point shot at will and they are difficult to guard when all are on the court at the same time.  Williams and Smith can shoot it occasionally, but they are extremely inefficient.  Horford is not a threat to launch any threes.

Teague and Bibby are very different shooters.  Bibby is strictly a jumpshooter, while Teague can take it to the basket.  It’s surprising that Teague doesn’t have a higher eFG% with his Jumper/Inside split.  Johnson and Crawford are primarily jumpshooters.  Josh Smith has transformed his game to almost exclusively taking it to the basket.


Player                Off/Def/Total
Bibby                 1.9/8.6/5.3
Teague               .8/10.2/5.4
Johnson            3.1/10.1/6.6
Crawford          1.5/8.2/4.8
Williams            5.5/14.9/10.2
Smith                 7.6/19.2/13.3
Horford            9.6/24.2/16.9

Atlanta’s big men are all solid rebounders and should continue to post good rebound numbers since they all return to the court for 2010.   The Hawks posted a #5 offensive rebounding ranking in 2009.


The Hawks ranked 13th in the league in defensive rating in 2009 and should post a ranking in the top half of the league for 2010.
PG:  This the weak link for the Hawks on defense.  Mike Bibby has lost a couple of steps and opposing point guards abuse him on a nightly basis.  Jeff Teague still has a lot to learn about team defense.
SG:  Joe Johnson is a excellent defender, but Jamal Crawford’s defense needs some work and Atlanta suffers when Crawford subs for Johnson.
SF:  Marvin Williams isn’t much of an offensive player, and he isn’t much of a defensive player either.  Mediocre at best.
PF:  Josh Smith is one of the better defenders in the league and he makes highlight reel blocks.
C:  Horford is an excellent defensive player and he really saves Crawford and Bibby from mistakes when their man gets by them.

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