J.J. far from dy-no-mite for Hawks - East Valley Tribune: Opinion

J.J. far from dy-no-mite for Hawks

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Posted: Friday, December 2, 2005 10:59 am | Updated: 7:17 am, Fri Oct 7, 2011.

Well, now we know neither Joe Johnson nor Boris Diaw can play point guard in the NBA.

Of course, the Suns have Steve Nash at that spot while Diaw has become a godsend as the team’s best passer in the post since Alvan Adams. Meanwhile, the 2-12, lotto-here-we-come-again Hawks have Tyronn Lue and Royal Ivey running the Atlanta offense ("Find a shot for Joe and crash the boards.")

Johnson has figured out something as well: Hitting a wide-open jumper is a lot easier than hitting one when you’re double-covered.

How many times do you think exiled Hawks owner Steve Belkin has sung the "I told you soooo . . ." verse in the last month?

Along with Diaw, the Suns got two first-round draft picks and a $3 million trade exception out of that deal. No wonder Belkin wouldn’t pull the trigger until a judge forced him.

Will the Phoenix fans boo Johnson when he returns Sunday? He doesn’t deserve the Jason Kidd/Antonio McDyess treatment — he wasn’t treated as well as he could have been for two consecutive summers by the Suns brass — but the guy did turn his back on a championship run for a chance to be an All-Star in the basketball equivalent of Pluto.

HAWTHORNE REMEMBERED

Jerry Colangelo remembers Nate Hawthorne — who died of a massive heart attack in the driveway of his Tempe home last week at age 54 — as a quiet, hardworking player who was rewarded with a seat on the most unforgettable ride in franchise history — the 1975-76 "Sunderella Suns" that fell two games shy of a championship.

"He didn’t play long (two years)," Colangelo said. "But he experienced something that few players do, and played in (the triple-overtime loss to Boston in Game 5 of the Finals) what is still considered the greatest game of all time."

Then-coach John McLeod has often said his greatest regret about Game 5 was not playing Hawthorne in the third overtime.

Boston played little-used and fresh Glenn McDonald, whose three baskets won the game for the Celtics.

QUICK HITTERS

• Nice to see ASU basketball get off to a 4-0 start even if the four victims couldn’t reach the NCAA tournament if they merged. Now comes a 2-2 Minnesota team that was without four guards in a 17-point loss to No. 23 Maryland Wednesday.

• Congratulations to Kelly Stinnett, who will make $650,000 to be Randy Johnson’s valet/catcher. Maybe between Big Unit starts, Yanks manager Joe Torre will ask Stinnett to play center field. He’s asked everyone else.

• Yes, the Coyotes did have conversations with the Bruins about Joe Thornton within the last two weeks. But offers were never swapped — although Phoenix would have loved a chance to top San Jose’s offer. Instead, they have to play Thornton and the Sharks seven more times.

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