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Joe Johnson backtracks on his comments on fans. Sort of. Not like they are keeping him anyway.

May 9, 2010, 10:08 PM EDT

Joe Johnson and his teammates were booed after game three. Well deserved, by the way, they quit. After the game Johnson said of the fans the kind of thing that a free agent to be says on his way out of town:

“It’s about us in this locker room. We could care less if they showed up or not.”

Today, Johnson gave the politicians backtrack — sort of taking it back without actually apologizing. From the Atlanta Journal Constitution:

“It was tough. I don’t think we’ve heard the boos like that in the five years since I’ve been here. When I first got here, man, there were probably like 100 people out there in those seats. I won’t say everybody is a diehard, but they’ve shown us a lot of support over the years. In the heat of the battle you tend to say a lot of things. But it was tough, man. I was a little [ticked] off but I am over now.”

The Hawks (and Mike Woodson) supporters have been going to this card recently — “remember how bad it was five years ago?” It’s faulty logic. Yes, things are better for the Hawks than they were five years ago, but that is different than saying this team lived up to its potential. This team did not fully take advantage of its skills and players, especially in the playoffs.

And part of that falls on Johnson, brought in to lead this team, but really suited to be a number two on a top title team. He is Pau Gasol or Jameer Nelson, a really dangerous second guy, but not a night in, night out team leader. The Hawks have gone to Iso-Joe offense a lot these playoffs, and it has let them down.

The Hawks need to make a change. These comments just make it easier.

  1. andrew fowler - May 9, 2010 at 11:38 PM

    get joe out of here ,but its the coaches fault ,the team played well in the second game against orlando until the 4 quarter, fowards dribbling the ball too many joe isos ,no ball movement,what happen to hit the open man ,josh you cant dribble but i got a constistent 25 footer.guards must drive and get their center in foul trouble, everybody pass pass pass that the we need a big center no washed centers either

  2. Stephen - May 10, 2010 at 11:27 AM

    The Hawks were not only out gunned but out coached. The Hawks are very athletic and long and cannot exist with the elite teams running alot of half court sets. This is a team that has to run to make a real splash. Also, this team is in need of a PG that can speed up the offense as Bibby is way past his prime and should be coming off the bench. Orlando would have beat this team nomatter what they tried as they are on a much higher level of team play. The Magic are on a mission and with the depth of play coming off the bench many teams are going to look foolish against the Magic.

  3. stain - May 10, 2010 at 3:24 PM

    Something happenend behind the scenes here. I dont know if it was Joe going to NY that destroyed the chemistry, but there is no vision in ownership, coaching or the players. Ollks to me like Horford, Crawford and Mo Evans give it every night. This will not cut it. Time to start over with new coach. Point guard that drives, could be Teague but Woody rarely played him. Superstar like Paul Pierce that can take over. HOLLA

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