Give and Go
By Erie Times-News Sports Erie Times-New staff bloggers
The Erie Times-News sports staff delivers in-depth coverage of the Erie BayHawks and pro and college basketball   Read more about this blog.
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Posts tagged ‘Atlanta Hawks’
Posted: November 4th, 2012

Here’s a quick look at who the Erie BayHawks picked in Friday’s 2012 D-League Draft. The BayHawks drafted Danny Sumner in the eighth and final round. The BayHawks start training camp Nov. 10.

Eighth round — Danny Sumner (6-7, 225, F, William & Mary)
Date of birth: Dec. 6, 1987
Hometown: Fairfax, Va.
Background: Averaged 9.8 points in his four-year career at William & Mary that ended in 2009-10. After his senior season, he had workouts with the Atlanta Hawks. Has played overseas since college. Last season, he averaged 16.4 points playing in Germany and 14.5 points in Iceland.

Posted: August 1st, 2012

Former Erie BayHawks star forward Ivan Johnson appears on course to return to Atlanta after the Hawks extended him a qualifying offer last month./AP.

Nearly a month ago, the Atlanta Hawks extended a qualifying offer to Ivan Johnson, who starred for the Erie BayHawks in the 2010-11 season.

The deal is for one year and nearly a million dollars guaranteed. Not bad for someone who didn’t make $30,000 in the D-League with the BayHawks.

Basically, the Hawks can match any offer sheet Johnson signs as a restricted free agent. The reserve power forward averaged 6.4 points and four boards in 56 games for Atlanta in the shortened 2011-12 season.

With no news of any other team offering Johnson a deal, it appears Johnson will be back in Atlanta if he chooses to sign with the Hawks. The deal expires Oct. 1, but the Hawks could extend the date.

Johnson came into the NBA with his share of issues I saw first hand while he was with the BayHawks, but he also arrived hungry and determined to stick.

The latter shined brighter even though his pocket was $25,000 lighter after getting fined for flipping off fans after the Boston Celtics eliminated the Hawks in Game 6 of the 2012 NBA Playoffs.

The key for Johnson, who turned 28 in April, is to stay hungry and find that unique balance of playing hard, spirited, but not reckless. Johnson has to walk that line to maximize his full ability.

If he plays passive, he’s not effective.

If he plays too fiery, he loses control.

If he plays better than he did last year, Johnson will get more than a qualifying offer after the 2012-13 season.

Posted: May 27th, 2012

LeBron James and Dwayne Wade are playing as one. Do the Boston Celtics have an answer for the Heat duo./AP

The Boston Celtics are old and hurt.

This is their Big 3′s last stand.

The Miami Heat are going to the close the final chapter on the Kevin Garnett, Ray Allen and Paul Pierce era of the Celtics, but the truth is, they should put them away.

Miami has the game’s best player – three-time MVP LeBron James – and Dwyane Wade has reemerged. The two are working in unison and everyone else is falling in line.

Just don’t see how those aging and aching Celtics get past them.

Boston struggled with the Atlanta Hawks, but won. Got pushed to a Game 7 by the eighth-seeded Philadelphia 76ers, but won.

Now the Celtics got Miami.

They shouldn’t win, should they?

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in: NBA, New York Knicks
Posted: May 14th, 2012

Marc Gasol and the Memphis Grizzlies couldn't come back from a 3-1 series deficit to beat the L.A. Clippers./AP Photo.

Not bad. Not bad.

With the Los Angeles Clipppers beating the Memphis Grizzlies in Game 7 Sunday to advance to the Western Conference semifinals, all the first-round series are complete. I finished 6-2 in predicting the first round.

Eastern Conference

(1) Chicago Bulls vs. (8) Philadelphia 76ers.
Prediction: Bulls in 5
Outcome: Sixers in 6.
What happpened: Derrick Rose got hurt. Joakim Noah got hurt. Bulls didn’t have enough.

(2) Miami Heat vs. (7) New York Knicks
Prediction: Heat in 6
Outcome: Heat in 5
What happened: Knicks not ready as a team to seriously challenge Miami.

(3) Indiana Pacers vs. (6) Orlando Magic
Prediction: Pacers in 5
Outcome: Pacers in 5
What happened: Without Dwight Howard, Magic had no shot to win this series.

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Posted in: NBA, New York Knicks
Posted: May 11th, 2012

Up next for Kevin Garnett and the Boston Celtics? An familiar rival. The Philadelphia 76ers./AP Photo.

Whenever these two teams met in the 1980s, it was classic.

Bird vs. Dr. J. McHale vs. Barkley. Moses vs. Parish.

Go back even further to the 1960s. Legends emerged.

Wilt vs. Russell. Havlicek vs. Greer. Jones vs. Walker.

On Saturday, the Sixers and Celtics will renew their rivalry in the Eastern Conference semifinals as the two teams haven’t faced each in the postseason since 2002 when the first round was still a best-of-5 series.

Boston won 3-2.

Who will take this series and likely face Miami in the conference finals?

Go Green.

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Posted in: NBA
Posted: May 11th, 2012

Ivan Johnson's first NBA season ended with the Boston Celtics beating the Atlanta Hawks in the first round of the NBA Playoffs, but he'll be remembered for more./AP Photo

Ivan Johnson is out.

So is Mike James. Include Blake Ahearn as well.

The three former Erie BayHawks are on NBA teams that have been eliminated from the playoffs. Last night, the Boston Celtics escaped the Atlanta Hawks, 83-80, to win Game 6 and the series, 4-2.

Johnson has been with the Hawks all season. Not playing in Game 6, Johnson gave a fan the middle finger as he left the TD Garden court in Boston.

There were better ways for him to end the season.  After having a great year with Erie in 2010-11, Johnson, for the most part, took advantage of his first NBA season, but didn’t end it graciously.

Before the Celtics eliminated the Hawks, the Philadelphia 76ers pulled out a miraculous 79-78 win in which Andre Iguodala hit a game winning free throws with 2.2 seconds left.

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Posted: May 4th, 2012

Rookie power forward Ivan Johnson (44) is averaging five points for the Atlanta Hawks in the NBA Playoffs./AP Photo

Three former Erie BayHawks – PF Ivan Johnson (Atlanta Hawks), PG Blake Ahearn (Utah Jazz) and PG Mike James (Chicago Bulls) – are still flying in the NBA Playoffs.

How long will their teams stay in postseason flight is the question.

The Hawks are tied 1-1 in their best-of-7 series against the Boston Celtics. Had they won Game 2 at home with Boston not having Rajon Rondo, the Hawks would be in good shape to advance to the Eastern Conference semifinals.

Boston already the edge in experience and resolve. Now they have home court advantage and Rondo is back from his one-game suspension for bumping a referee. This isn’t looking too good for the Hawks.

As for Johnson he’s averaging five points, five rebounds and a steal in this series, but is shooting just 36.4 percent from the field. Johnson shot 51.3 percent during the regular season.

Game 3 is today at 7:30 p.m. on ESPN.

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Posted: April 27th, 2012

(1) Chicago Bulls (50-16)

1st round foe: (8) Philadelphia 76ers (35-31).

Biggest concern vs. 76ers: Don’t have a true superstar, but enough good players to make you have to compete to beat them.

Last 10: 7-3 (Won 3)

Strengths: Defense. The Bulls lead the NBA in fewest points allowed (88.17 per game). They have front-court depth, great team chemistry and a closer in Derrick Rose.

Weaknesses: Key injuries to their two best players – Rose and Luol Deng – make them vulnerable. Although they’ve had success without Rose, in the playoffs, he’ll need to be close to 100 percent to reach NBA Finals.

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Posted in: NBA, New York Knicks
Posted: April 25th, 2012

Get it out of here.

After turning the ball over, former Erie BayHawks forward Ivan Johnson swatted away a dunk attempt by Nick Young of the Los Angeles Clippers on Tuesday night.

Johnson has become a key reserve for the Atlanta Hawks as they head into the NBA playoffs.

Posted: March 19th, 2012

Former Erie BayHawks forward Ivan Johnson had 10 points on 5-of-5 shooting in helping the Atlanta Hawks beat the Cleveland Cavaliers, 103-87, on Sunday at Quicken Loans Arena.

Joe Johnson led the Hawks with 28 points.

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