On Thursday, Hawks coach Larry Drew encapsulated Josh Smith's career with the team succinctly. Drew said that he was ready to pull him after he turned the ball over twice and missed a 21-foot jump shot early in the third quarter of the Hawks' Game 2 loss to the Chicago Bulls. However, Drew played a hunch and left him in. Over the final eight minutes, Smith had seven points, three rebounds and three blocks, helping the Hawks get out of the 14-point hole that he had helped get them in. "When he plays like that, that's when we're at our best," Drew said. It was the first part that led Drew to meet with Smith on Thursday morning before practice. Smith was 4-for-14. His four baskets all came from three feet and within, while he missed six shots from 13 feet and beyond. Drew said he thought Smith was trying to do too much. "I want him flying all over the place," Drew said. "I don't want him sitting out there just shooting jump shots and trying to make plays off the dribble." They were Drew's strongest comments about the shot selection of Smith, whose jump shots Drew has blessed as long as they came within the structure of the offense. Said Smith after Wednesday's game, "It is just frustrating because I know I can give this team a little bit more on the offensive end."
Drew critical of Smith's perimeter play
Atlanta Journal-Constitution | May 6