5 Things We Learned From the Wizards and Hawks Series
*Photo via AP
The Atlanta Hawks and the Washington Wizards concluded their series tonight as the Hawks won the series four to two. It was a hard fought series with players giving it their all and fighting to advance.
There are a lot of things to take away from this Eastern Conference semifinals series, but let's look at the five most important.
1. Superstars are Crucial.
One thing we learned from the Hawks and Wizards series is that superstars are needed in the playoffs. Although the Hawks won the series, they seemed to struggle at times to get any offense going, especially when they needed baskets. They didn't have a go to player that could score for them when things slowed down. Meanwhile, the Wizards had a star player, Paul Pierce, that knocked down a few huge shots for them in the playoffs.
2. An Aggressive Frontcourt Makes Difference
Al Horford had a fantastic series. He averaged 16.8 points and 9.8 rebounds, but more importantly. he was responsible for the Game 5 win as he was aggressive throughout the entire game and ended up with the game winning basket.
3. John Wall is the Heart of the Wizards.
John Wall may be more important to the Wizards than many expected. He is the driving force behind the Wizards offense and, if healthy, the Wizards could have won the series. He was averaging 10 assists in the previous series. In this series, he averaged 11 assists in the three games he played in this series, but also averaged 6 turnovers since his injury . If healthy, there could have been a different outcome.
Both of these teams proved to be inexperienced in this series and even with the Atlanta Hawks winning, they may have problems in the next round. They averaged 17 turnovers in their last three games, including a game in which they had 23. That is unacceptable if they expect to beat a Cleveland Cavaliers team that thrives on fast-break points. The Hawks often looked lost on the offensive end as they did not look like a team that won the Eastern Conference. Hopefully with these two playoff series won, the Hawks will be better prepared for the Cavs.
5. Demarre Carroll is Rising.
Demarre Carroll averaged 16.6 points per game in this series and is averaging 18.9 ppg overall in this playoffs. He led the team in scoring a few times, including the Game 6 clincher against the Wizards, in which he scored 25 points. Carroll has been impressive and his offense only seems to be getting better. He will have a true test when he goes up against Lebron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers.
These are the most important things we've learned from this six game series between the Wizards and Hawks. Hopefully, the Hawks can continue to do the positives and work on the negatives as their next series against the Cleveland Cavaliers awaits them.