Archive for the ‘Hawks’ Category

Special Giveaway: Hawks tickets, for TONIGHT’S GAME!

Dear Loyal Metblog Readers,

Some friends at StubHub (who knew we had friends at StubHub?) have graciously agreed to donate a pair of Hawks tickets for tonight’s game against the Charlotte Bobcats. Seats are in section 108, tipoff is at 7:30 PM.

This appears to be a member of the Hawks basketball team. Photo by Scott Cunningham

As a reward to our long-time readers and quick searchbar users, the tickets will go to the first person to name the player previous author james (successfully) petitioned to stay here in Atlanta. Well, at least the guy signed a four-year contract after james posted an open letter to him here on metblogs, so you draw your own conclusions.

Be the first to leave your comment (make sure to include your email address when you login – it won’t show, but I’ll get it) and I’ll send you the electronic tickets for tonight!

playoff-bound and as the three seed!!

NOW YOU KNOW!!!!!

i have to take credit. three years ago when i publicly declared i was going to be a fan of the hapless atlanta hawks, right after they had drafted acie law iv and al horford with their two first round picks, i was routinely chided by friends. “good luck,” they told me, smiling, “that team will break your heart.”

and what has my fandom wrought? well only three straight playoff seasons. and each one improving over the last one. consider this:

-the hawks snuck into the playoffs in 2008 as the eight seed in the east, losing to the celtics in the first round
-last season, the hawks finished fourth in the eastern conference, beating miami in the first round before getting swept by the cavs
and this season?

well, with the celtics loss last night, the hawks will be the THIRD SEED in the eastern conference. heading into tonight’s final game the hawks have 52 wins and are among the top six teams in the nba. not too shabby. and yes, i am totally taking credit.

playoff tickets are on sale. the hakws are the best thing sports-wise going on in this town right now. come out and support them.

2 all-stars? not since 1998.

the nba all star reserves were announced last night.

and my friends, there are TWO atlanta hawks on the roster. BFD, you say? well let me tell you that not since dikembe mutombo and steve smith were on the all star team in 1998 have two hawks been named to the all star team.

i don’t know if anything yet speaks to the resurgence of this team like the inclusion of two of it’s stars on the team.

congrats to joe johnson and al horford on their selection.

there is a lot of justified anger in the hawks blogosphere that three hawks weren’t included. josh smith deserved to go too and the amazing thing is this is being echoed nationally. i love this.

i feel especially excited about al horford. he’s my favorite hawk and i decided to become a hawks fan the year he was drafted. i even dug up my old post about his draft. it makes me smile to see what he has blossomed into (even if that acie law thing never worked out!!)

so congrats again to joe and al and condolences to j-smoove. keep playing like you are and next year you’ll be voted in over creaky old kevin garnett.

GO HAWKS!!!

(now when is that al horford jersey going to be available to buy?)

twitterin’ hawks

two things i love:

1. twitter
2. the atlanta hawks

and one thing that brings me immense glee is the powerful combination of the two. two hawks players tweet with pretty serious regularity, centers al horford (@al_horford) and zaza pachulia (@zaza27). you may remember that zaza even responded to me by twitter this summer when i wrote him a letter on this blog urging him to resign with atlanta (i still take credit for his ultimate resigning too!!)

al horford has been a very engaged twitterer, giving away tickets and hosting q&a sessions with fans. he has even responded to me twice by direct message. fwiw, this is why al is fast becoming a favorite among the hawks faithful. great play, great effort, great personality and being engaged with fans and the community.

in addition, hawks vp of communications, arthur triche (@hawksprman), is active on twitter and will often respond to slam magazine executive editor lang whitaker (@langwhitaker – himself a diehard hawks fan) in 140 character bursts.

add to that hawks tv play-by-play man bob rathburn (@hawksvoice) and several hawks bloggers (@peachtreehoops, @hawkstr8talk) and the official hawks twitter account (@atlanta_hawks) and the hawks twitter community has become an active part of being a fan for me.

so get on board, and don’t forget to follow the hawks banished mascot @spiritthehawk (not official but hillarious none the less.)

follow these people and NOW YOU KNOW!!!!

a funny thing happened on the way to the highlight factory.

….we started winning.

you may not know this but a quick look at the nba standings this morning would show you that your atlanta hawks are currently third in the eastern conference tied with boston and one game behind orlando.

the hawks went through some of the leanest years in professional sports. i would like to say that i was a fan through them, but the truth is i sat around not caring much about basketball and most of that time i didn’t live in atlanta.

i decided two seasons ago though that i needed a local team to root for and i adopted the hawks the year they drafted al horford and that other guy. the hawks rewarded me with a trade for mike bibby and a losing season but a playoff appearance.

and they last year. i fell in serious love with this team last year. i went to more than 25 home games, cheered, yelled, threw things at my tv. and the hawks rewarded me with a 40+ win season and a first round playoff win.

and now this year. we’re on fire. and we’re good. damn good.

the hawks play in detroit today at 1 pm trying to equal their best start since 1997.

come out and support this team, they deserve it. your next shot is wednesday against the raptors.

about that zaza letter.

i promise, promise, that i will get off of this topic soon, but….

a few days ago, i implied, somewhat tounge-in-cheek that my open letter to zaza pachulia may have been the reason he opted to sign a four year deal with the atlanta hawks*.

well, this sunday, while touring around with the fam, i opened up twitter and i found this tweet from none other than zaza pachulia (who tweets as @zaza27):

@jeherv hey buddy read your letter and want to tell you that you are the best.would love to invite you on the games ones the season starts

wow. you could say i was suitably shocked. so while $18 mil may have had more to do with it, maybe my letter did help out a bit.

even more impressive is to see that zaza is actually reading and responding to things that are being sent to him by his fans. that says a lot about the power of social media for sure, that i could write a blog post about an athlete, communicate it by twitter and get a response, but it says even more about why zaza is a fan favorite here in the atl.

and it could mean a lot of good things for this town basketball-wise for the next four years.

thanks zaza!!!

big z and the hawks come to terms. local blogger takes credit.

the hawks would be atlanta’s resurgent nba franchise; big z would be one zaza pachulia, #27; and the local blogger would be me.

sekou smith reported yesterday that the hawks and zaza have come to terms on a new deal that will keep the big georgian here in atlanta, where he has become a fan favorite, for four more years.

i am really excited about this.

and i can’t help but notice this happened right after a certain blogger published a letter to zaza right here on these pages.

coincidence?

you decide.

dear zaza,

zaza pachulia

photo by Chris Nelson (click pic for link)

please stay.

we love you here in atlanta. for the last two years i have watched you battle with heart and grit and determination. i watched you give up a starting slot to al horford with nary a complaint. i watched you stare down kevin garnett and almost come up the better.

sure, i know the arenas are empty sometime. i remember one game against the t’wolves last season where i thought we were at a minor league hockey game. but, we are building something here. finally, here in atlanta, we are building a winner.

and we love you. here you are ZAAAAAAZAAAAAAAA PACHUUUUUUUUUUULLIA. fans stand on their feet and scream when you come in. go to another city, you may just be another east european big guy with a funny name.

i know the hawks are talking to you. sekou smith told me so. i hope you really, really think hard about their offer. this is going to be a great basketball town. and i know from your tweets that you love the city. i also know from your tweets that you are in new york. do you think those knick fans will love you like we do? do you think anyone in nyc would name a blog after you like hawks blogger drew d. once did?

i’ll take you for ice cream, i’ll petition the city council to have zaza pachulia day. i’ll sit on a downtown billboard in a zaza jersey.

so please stay. let’s get it done. tell me what us hawks fans need to do to keep you here. because we want you to. of that i can assure you.

please.

yours,

james

thanks for a great season.

it’s all over.

the cavs swept the hawks at phillips last night to end atlanta’s post season run; a post-season run that saw atlanta win it’s first road playoff game and first playoff series in more than decade.

there will be plenty of time in the off-season to chew over what moves the hawks should make; do they get a big-name coach? do they trade josh smith? resign bibby? all of these questions will be out there.

but today, this fan just wants to say thank you. thanks to coach woodson, and joe, and josh and mike and al and marvin and zaza and flip and mo, even acie and mario and solo and the others that came off of the bench.

it was a great ride. i became a hawks fan two seasons ago because i wanted a hometown team to root for and i loved the idea of following some scrappy young underdogs. i became a fan last season, this season i fell in love.

i watched you guys play so many great games this season. i went to more than 20 and probably watched more than 20 on tv. and you never failed to entertain me and keep me coming back for more. at the beginning of the season no one gave you a chance. they laughed at you because j-chills had decided the greek league was more promising than atlanta. they questioned the off-season pickups of flip and mo.

but a few of us believed and so did you. and you went farther than anyone would have ever guessed. you brought us the fourth best record in the east, a home playoff series, a series win, and a chance to see the best team in basketball.

and last night you proved you could still play with heart and determination even with your backs against the wall.

so thanks. i am sold. most likely a fan for life.

and NOW YOU KNOW!!!!!!

NOW YOU KNOW!!!!

i got on board last season. i wanted a local team to root for and i don’t like football and i have a baseball team and the thrashers just seemed so bland. so i picked the hawks; the much-maligned consistently bad atlanta hawks.

and over the course of a season i fell in love. honestly i feel in love the day of the home opener when the hawks shocked the dallas maveriks. i watched a team scrap and claw and barely make it into the playoffs last year and the take the eventual nba champs to seven games.

there was more decrying of the hawks in the off-season, as they were unable to keep 6th man josh childress from departing altanta for greece. greece. apparently j-chill preferred to be out of the nba than in atlanta.

and then the season started. and this hawks team has been good. i have watched more than 2/3 of the hawks game this year, in person or on tv, and i have really fallen hard this season. they came out of the gate with a bang and have played up to par since then.

last week, against the paces they clinched the fourth seed in the nba’s eastern conference. we will be hosting a home playoff series and have a very good chance of winning and moving on to the second round of the nba playoffs.

this team is fun too. with no showy superstars, they go out and play every night, getting great contributions from the starters, but also from the trio that has come off the bench with a gusto this year; flip murray, mo evans, and of course, zaza pachulia.

so how about it atlanta? the hawks have lived up their part this season. now it’s your turn. get on the bandwagon. let’s get some buzz going. believe in these hawks.

NOW YOU KNOW!!!!!!!!!

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