clearn.png
Tuesday July 5th, 2022 1:59AM

Hawks' new GM Fields makes improved defense the top priority

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

ATLANTA (AP) — The Atlanta Hawks are emphasizing defensive improvement as they consider offseason changes.

Change already has come in the front office, where Landry Fields has been promoted to general manager.

Field on Monday continually stressed defense as the offseason priority for a team that took a big step back after advancing to the 2021 Eastern Conference final.

Fields said a defensive identity must be established for the Hawks to make another run at the title after being eliminated in the first round by Miami.

“The identity defensively has been, well that’s something we’re going to have to build into,” Landry said. “That’s been part of the reason why we haven’t taken that step. We have to have an everyday hard-hat approach to our defensive capabilities. ... The identity piece is going to come when we see it consistently.”

The Hawks ranked only 21st in the league in scoring defense, allowing 112.3 points per game. It was a big reason the team played below .500 much of the season before making the play-in tournament and then earning the No. 8 seed in the playoffs.

Fields had been assistant GM. His promotion becomes official on July 1 and has not been announced by the team. Even so, he discussed his new role on Monday and said team president Travis Schlenk “is still the decision-maker.”

Led by All-Star point guard Trae Young, the Hawks ranked sixth in scoring. The disappointing season showed the Hawks need improved defense and perhaps a more established complementary scorer behind Young.

Atlanta has the No. 16 overall pick in Thursday's NBA draft but could trade that pick for a veteran player.

“It’s always a fine line and you have those discussions for sure,” Fields said.

Fields, 33, had a five-year career as a player with the New York Knicks and Toronto before becoming a fast riser off the court. He took a scouting position with San Antonio in 2016 and joined the Hawks as assistant GM in 2020.

A disappointing finish this season have forced the Hawks to consider changes.

“It seems natural based off of where we wanted to go this season and where we ended up,” Fields said.

Young may be the only player who is off-limits to trade discussions. The team's young core also includes power forward John Collins, small forward De'Andre Hunter, center Clint Capela and shooting guard Kevin Huerter.

Following the playoff loss to Miami, Hawks principal owner Tony Ressler said the team was too complacent last offseason. He said the team wouldn't make the same mistake.

“I think we should have tried to get better rather than bring back what we had,” Ressler said last month before adding "That won’t happen again, by the way. It was a mistake, in my opinion.”

Ressler's comments have fueled speculation the Hawks are open for a trade.

Fields said the Hawks have had calls from teams “about any and every player. We take that in and see if there’s anything that makes sense."

___

More AP NBA: https://apnews.com/hub/nba and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

  • Associated Categories: Sports, Associated Press (AP), AP Sports, AP Online Basketball, AP Business, AP Online - Georgia News, AP Sports - NBA
© Copyright 2022 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Title IX: WNBA owner among women athletes running businesses
WNBA co-owner Ginny Gilder says fighting for equal treatment as a rower at Yale 46 years ago radicalized her
2:30PM ( 9 minutes ago )
Hawks' new GM Fields makes improved defense the top priority
The Atlanta Hawks are emphasizing defensive improvement as they consider offseason changes
2:11PM ( 29 minutes ago )
Israeli government dissolves parliament, calls new elections
Israel’s weakened coalition government has decided to dissolve parliament and call a new election
2:10PM ( 29 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
Ledecky wins 1,500 for record-extending 17th world title
Katie Ledecky has led an American one-two and won her fourth 1,500-meter freestyle title at the world swimming championships
1:06PM ( 1 hour ago )
Orlando still evaluating all options with No. 1 draft pick
College basketball season ended almost three months ago, the NBA draft lottery was more than a month ago and the draft itself is later this week
12:50PM ( 1 hour ago )
On Golf: US Open a reminder of what really matters in golf
The U.S. Open began with Phil Mickelson speaking without saying hardly anything
12:09PM ( 2 hours ago )
AP Sports
Bird's late 3 seals Storm win in her New York finale
Gabby Williams scored a season-high 23 points in Seattle’s 81-72 win over the New York Liberty in what was Storm guard Sue Bird’s final regular-season game in her hometown
3:11PM ( 23 hours ago )
Williams helps Storm beat Liberty in Bird's New York finale
Gabby Williams scored a season-high 23 points in Seattle’s 81-72 win over the New York Liberty in what was Storm guard Sue Bird’s final regular-season game in her hometown
2:07PM ( 1 day ago )
AP sources: Atkinson decides not to coach Charlotte Hornets
Kenny Atkinson has decided not to become the coach of the Charlotte Hornets
5:53PM ( 1 day ago )
AP Online Basketball
Brazil's Petrobras CEO resigns amid pressure over gas prices
The chief executive of Brazil’s state-run oil giant Petrobras resigned amid political pressure from top lawmakers and President Jair Bolsonaro
12:53PM ( 1 hour ago )
Germany sticks to 2030 coal exit target amid energy worries
The German government says it remains committed to its goal of phasing out coal as a power source by 2030, despite deepening worries about a cut in Russia’s gas supplies
12:25PM ( 2 hours ago )
UK set for national railway strike as last-ditch talks fail
Britain is facing its biggest rail strikes for decades after last-minute talks between a union and train companies failed to reach a settlement over pay and job security
12:13PM ( 2 hours ago )
AP Business
What to watch in Alabama Senate runoff, DC mayor's race
The two Republican candidates in Alabama’s U.S. Senate primary runoff on Tuesday can each boast that at one point they had Donald Trump’s endorsement in the race
5:34AM ( 9 hours ago )
Anderson, Olson lead Braves over Cubs, avoid 1st 3-game skid
Ian Anderson pitched three-hit ball into the seventh inning, Matt Olson hit three doubles and the Atlanta Braves beat the Chicago Cubs 6-0
5:18PM ( 21 hours ago )
Cubs' Contreras gets 3 hits and steal, beats brother, Braves
Willson Contreras had three hits and stole a base in his first game against younger brother William, helping the Chicago Cubs beat the Atlanta Braves 6-3
7:18PM ( 1 day ago )
AP Online - Georgia News
The Kerr Dynasty: Player or coach, Warriors boss just wins
He hit a championship-winning shot with Michael Jordan
3:00AM ( 4 days ago )
Wicked Rude: LIV XIV ready for a traditional Boston welcome
The U.S. Open this week is the first time that 14 golfers will have to face the American public since defecting to a Saudi-backed upstart tour
9:34PM ( 4 days ago )
LeBron trading card could fetch record price at auction
LeBron James might be on the cusp of setting another record
5:34PM ( 4 days ago )
AP Sports - NBA
Title IX: WNBA owner among women athletes running businesses
WNBA co-owner Ginny Gilder says fighting for equal treatment as a rower at Yale 46 years ago radicalized her
2:30PM ( 9 minutes ago )
Israeli government dissolves parliament, calls new elections
Israel’s weakened coalition government has decided to dissolve parliament and call a new election
2:10PM ( 29 minutes ago )
EXPLAINER: What is Title IX and what impact has it had?
Title IX is best known for its role in gender equity in athletics and sexual harassment on campuses
2:10PM ( 29 minutes ago )
Biden says decision on gas tax holiday may come this week
President Joe Biden says he’s considering a federal holiday on the gasoline tax
2:10PM ( 29 minutes ago )
Greitens brandishes gun in video, says he's 'RINO hunting'
Eric Greitens, a Republican candidate for U.S. Senate in Missouri, has posted a campaign video ad on Twitter that shows him brandishing a long gun and declaring that he’s hunting RINOs, or Republicans In Name Only
1:55PM ( 44 minutes ago )