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There's no way to predict how Howard will feel about the Lakers or how Smith will feel about the Hawks at the conclusion of this season. Winning cures everything. Thus, if the Lakers or Hawks make a deep playoff run, either player might feel more inclined to re-sign. If either team gets bounced in the first round, the respective player will be more likely to think winning lies elsewhere. I could definitely see a scenario where the Lakers flop in the playoffs and Howard comes to the realization that Kobe, Nash and the Lakers are beyond their window to compete for a championship.
As for Smith, I don't feel Teague or Smith have reached their potential. I think this is primarily due to the fact that Mike Woodson and Larry Drew were not the coaches best suited to help players reach their potential. Woodson is best suited to leading a roster of veterans and Drew is best suited to a return to an assistant coaching position. Paul George was recently quoted in USA Today praising Brian Shaw for helping him reach his All-Star potential. If the Hawks are able to obtain a coach like that in the off season, the Hawks will become a more attractive destination for free agents.
2 months, 4 weeks ago on Welcome to Atlanta, where we got options
"I’m not that guy. I doubt the majority of basketball fans are either."
I wonder what could have possibly made Robert feel that way.
11 months ago on Guest Post -- Robert Silverman: The Thin Line Of Thunder Disgust