Tuesday, May 4th, 2010 at 11:30 am  |  16 responses

Hawks Unsure About Double-Teaming Dwight Howard

Mike Woodson claims not to know what his strategy will be, but there’s some evidence out there that suggests going at Dwight with both single and double coverage. The AJC reports: “Assuming he’s not just being sly, Hawks coach Mike Woodson won’t decide what to do about Magic center Dwight Howard until some time on Tuesday. Woodson is wrestling with a difficult problem. The solution is central to the Hawks’ chances against the Magic in their Eastern Conference semifinals playoff series, which opens Tuesday night. ‘We still haven’t figured out what we are going to do yet as far as double [team] him or play him straight-up,’ Woodson said before the Hawks departed for Orlando on Monday. “That is something I will sleep on tonight and make the final decision [Tuesday].’ No matter which strategy Woodson settles on, it may well work better than expected against Howard, at least if the four regular season games against Orlando are an indication. A review of those games indicates the Hawks had more success slowing Howard by sending a second man to help guard him in the post. But Hawks center Al Horford, an All-Star like Howard, more than held his own when left to defend him alone. ‘I feel like if we show both things, it works best for our team,” Horford said. The video and statistical evidence, accumulated by Synergy Sports Technology, seems to support a varied approach. In the four games against the Hawks, Howard attempted to score 34 times on post-ups against Horford. The Hawks sent a second defender before Howard made his move on 10 of those possessions. When Howard was alone vs. Horford, the Magic center scored 16 points on 24 possessions (five field goals and six free throws). Howard turned the ball over four times. That’s excellent defense by Horford, but it’s even better when he gets help. The Hawks forced nine turnovers on those 10 possessions (Howard scored the one time he got off a shot).”

  • Add a Comment
  • Share
  • RSS

Tags: , , ,

  • ENDS

    DOnt Do it Hawks! theyll make you pay. Damned if you dont

  • neaorin

    They will be pretty sure after Game 1.

  • underdog

    I certainly sure, at first they’ll try to play Horford one-on-one against Dwight. Plus, the Hawks will try to draw as much fault as possible on D-12. Acting time for ATL! Let’s go Hawks.

  • bashmo

    PLEASSSE double team Dwight howard…it will open up for the rest of the magic to hys, ill josh smith good or wat, offensive game or wat, al horford bitharre or wat, mike bibby young or wat, marvin williams bust or wat, rashard lewis dagger 3′s or wat

  • T-Money

    I’m not sure why coaches feel Howard warrants a double team. He’s not even a 20 ppg scorer. If Howard scores 30+ a game, you tip your hat to them. But that’s not who he is. LA didn’t double in the Finals and it worked very well.

  • Dirtybird

    I’d have to agree T-Money, I wouldn’t want Orlando making double digit 3′s every game.

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_eyY2_6_fbU SMK

    And anyway Orlando’s going to use a lot more of the hot Jameer Nelson knife through the soft Mike Bibby butter type of offense then letting things stagnate trying to force things into Howard in the post.

  • kaboom

    they should find a way to stop Jameer ,he’s the man right now,not Dwight..

  • paolo

    No way they need to risk and double him with those shooters around him. On the other hand, Dwight ability to deal with a double team is really lower than average. If they can move their feet fast, turnover is very likely to happen

  • Hangtime Hec

    T-Money right. Its not like he is the best offensive player on the magic. Defending the 3 is the real priority. Thats there money maker.

  • LA Huey

    We’re missing the point here. ATL’s strategy against the Magic is an exercise in futility.

  • http://twitter.com/PDXGayBBall dma

    I’m just curious how many FT attempts Mike Bibby will have in the series. How he managed less than one FT attempt/game during the regular season is beyond me…

  • Dirtybird

    dma, He just doesn’t attack the paint too much, just has a lot of jumpers.

  • no id

    The real question should be is if Woodson is gonna use the bench in this series..what was the the point of signing Joe Smith or Jason Collins in the off season if u claim they are vets that can help n the playoffs..I know for a fact that Collins big ass can at least put a body on Howard.

  • J

    it’s about defending the other guys like shard vc nelson barnes redick and pietrus. trust al horford.

  • http://slamonline BossTerry

    This series is about as exciting as Lakers/Jazz… Can we just call it- MAGIC VS BIRDs.