HAWKS HOST “COLLEGE MEDIA DAY” ON SUNDAY, MARCH 25

Hawks Win 4OT Game to Halt Streaking Jazz
Tiffany Allen

ATLANTA -- The third game in three nights for the Atlanta Hawks was already enough to have the team exhausted, but Utah’s refusal to go quietly added to the Hawks dramatic weekend. The Hawks pulled off the win after four overtimes, which ties for the third-longest game in NBA history. The quadruple-overtime win was the longest game since 1997, and ended Utah's six game winning streak.

Atlanta Hawks coach Larry Drew was proud of his team for displaying such toughness and persistence to pull off the exhausting win. “This team didn’t have any quit in them,” stated Drew.

Joe Johnson led both teams in scoring with a season-high 37 points and Josh Smith added 22 points in the 139-133 victory Sunday night. With the win over the Utah Jazz the Atlanta Hawks record improves to 30-20 and moves into fifth place in the Eastern Conference.

Utah’s Al Jefferson led the Jazz with 28 points and 17 rebounds, and Paul Millsap added 25 points before both players fouled out in the fourth overtime.

Johnson’s 20-foot jumper over C.J. Miles with 16.9 seconds left in the fourth overtime gave the Hawks a 135-131 lead. Jeff Teague added two free throws with 13 seconds left to improve the lead to 137-133. Johnson’s final two free throws with 5.5 seconds left, clinched the victory for the Hawks.

Zaza Pachulia ended the night with 15 points and 20 rebounds, Marvin Williams added 16 points, and Kirk Hinrich added 12 points in the Hawks third win in three nights.
Utah’s Gordon Hayward scored 19 points, C.J. Miles added 17 points, and Devin Harris had 10 assists in the quadruple overtime battle.

The Hawks are on a four game winning streak with an upcoming schedule that includes 7 games in 9 nights. After a game like this and after a weekend like this, coach Larry Drew says “the most important thing is to get these guys some recovery time.”

Hawks Need 4 Overtimes to Put Away the Jazz
By Zachary Proa

The 50th game of the shortened 2012 NBA season was one to remember. On the Hawks third game in as many nights, Joe Johnson and company outlasted the Utah Jazz in 4 overtimes to extend their winning streak to four. The last time a NBA game reached a fourth overtime was a little over 14 years ago on November 14, 1997 when Phoenix beat Portland.

The Hawks, led by Joe Johnson’s 37 points, ended the Jazz’s six game winning streak. The Jazz were lead by tremendous efforts by both Al Jefferson’s 28 points and 17 rebounds, and Paul Millsap’s 23 points and 13 rebounds. Both teams, admittedly exhausted, didn’t stop battling once in the extended contest noted by 14 lead changes.

The Hawks dominated the first half and led by as many as 17. However, the Jazz started the second half with an 11-0 run to cut the lead down to 4, and from that point the game was back and forth. Another impressive outing for Josh Smith, who had a double double with 22 and 10 until fouling out in the first OT; creating mismatches in the paint until both Millsap and Jefferson fouled out in the final overtime.

After the game Hawks head coach, Larry Drew, replied to the team’s performance, “Our guys played great out there tonight. Especially for it being our third game in three nights, they were exhausted, but didn’t stop battling. I’m proud of them tonight.”

The Hawks will go on the road to battle the Bucks Tuesday night and the Jazz will travel to New Jersey to take on the Nets Monday night.

My College Media Day Experience
by Karmen Cook, Agnes Scott College

On March 25th, 2012 I attended the College Media Day hosted by the Atlanta Hawks at Philips Arena. As a college sophomore, I realized that I was one of the youngest members in attendance for the event. The majority of my peers were in the latter stages of graduate school. I started to question if I was chosen by accident because of the age factor. I pushed that feeling aside quickly, however. It was too late. I was already there. And I was determined to soak up as much as I could while I had the chance.

A memorable phrase from Sam Crenshaw stuck with me during our group encounter with him: Be prepared to do everything. From a liberal arts standpoint my professors tend to stress this fact, noting that it makes one more well-rounded in their profession. Mr. Crenshaw relayed a personal story to us sharing that although he wanted to be a sports reporter, sharpening his anchoring skills was an essential part of the learning process. He also stressed the importance of having an open mind. I found it very powerful that he initially wanted to be a camera man due to the fact that there were no faces on-screen that resembled his own. This too is a particular motivation of mine. My current aspiration is to be a sports analyst and I rarely see women in this field, be it TV or radio. I also learned from Mr. Crenshaw that what I want to do now may change as time passes, so I'm open to the idea that I may not be an analyst, but I realize that sports are a deep-running passion for me and that seems to be the key with many of the professionals that I had the chance to encounter.

Sitting in the press area immediately made me feel as if I were in my element. One of the best moments for me was to hear Cayden Cameron, son of radio personality Ryan Cameron, announce the starting lineup of Hawks and Jazz players. The incorporation of including people from all ages into the media day program was very endearing to me. I have never been inspired by someone so young that was in such close proximity to me. I filled pages and pages of notes. I concentrated deeply on angles of shots, field goal percentages, and the playing styles of Joe Johnson and Josh Smith. I was so engrossed that I decided to take a step back and observe other women that were there and I was disheartened to see that not many of them were as consumed by the action as I was. Sam Gaskin gathered us to head to the practice court for the press conference and I was disheartened not because we had to leave necessarily, but for the thirst that I had to finish my own game notes and piece together the perfect summary.

I was slightly crushed by the fact that I was not physically in the arena for a major piece of NBA history. While I was on the practice court waiting for Larry Drew's arrival, the Hawks and Jazz were competing to win a game has since tied as the third-longest in the NBA. I was a part of history. The ninth time in the league that a game has gone into four overtimes...I was there. I was meant to be in that place, at that time. As Larry Drew answered all of our pertinent questions pertaining to the game he said this of his team: “ These guys just didn't have any quit in them.” There was a reserved sense of pride in his men and how far they had come this season. There was also a slight hint of a smile as he spoke these words. I definitely enjoyed my experience, and like the Hawks I have no quit in me either. I am confident that the paper media pass from Sunday night's game will be replaced with a laminated version in the near future.

Hawks Gas Out Lasted The Jazz's
By Ameona Leigh Almund

After giving their all in a game that continued to four overtimes, it was amazing that any of the Atlanta Hawks or the Utah Jazz players were even able to walk off the court. The Hawks coming off back to back games beat the Jazz 139-133 all the while adding their name to history, as this was the leagues first four overtime game since 1997.

Larry Drew said he knew that Joe Johnson was tired, but Joe wanted to keep playing so he rode him.

Joe stepped his game up big time. He played 55:23 minutes, had 37 points, 8 rebounds, and dropped four 3 pointers.

However, the Jazz did not go down without a fight. They played hard and long. Al Jefferson put up 28 points, 17 rebounds and Paul Millsap chimed in with 25 points, 13 rebounds of his own.

With the win against the Jazz, the Hawks moved up from 6th to 5th place in the Eastern Conference. They are on a four game winning streak and their record is 30-20.

Josh Smith held his own with 22 points, Jeff Teague had 18 points, and Marvin Williams added 16 points to help the Hawks prevail.

Up next the Hawks play at Milwaukee on Tuesday, March 27, 2012 at 8:00pm EST.

An Experience of a Lifetime
By Marcus Key

It was a game of intensity, longevity, and sheer determination. Doesn’t sound so much like a game—well, it really wasn’t, it was more like a grudge match.

On Sunday the Atlanta Hawks captured a grueling 139-133 quadruple-overtime victory against the Utah Jazz in what was the third-longest game in NBA history. The game was only the ninth NBA game to go four OTs and the first since the Phoenix Suns beat the Portland Trail Blazers 140-139 on Nov. 14, 1997.

Joe Johnson poured in a game high 37 points and Josh Smith added 22 of his own as the Hawks won their fourth consecutive victory with three of them coming off back-to-back-to-back games in as many nights. The Hawks now have a much needed day off as they prepare to travel to Milwaukee on Tuesday to face the Bucks.

Sunday was also a special night for a select group of college students on hand to participate in the annual Hawks College Media Day. The event provided students, including myself, who are interested in careers in sports communication the opportunity to go a behind the scenes and get a glimpse into the world of journalism at an NBA game.

The afternoon’s festivities began with a hearty lunch in the pressroom where all the students got a chance to meet each other. Afterwards, we were led to a room in the Philips Arena where we had an array of guest speakers that came in and shared their experiences with us. The first speaker was Sam Crenshaw, a sports reporter and anchor from the NBC affiliate in Atlanta, WXIA-TV 11Alive News. Crenshaw spoke about being flexible in an ever-changing industry and to always try to learn and meet as many people you can.

The next speaker was Steve Holman, the voice of the Hawks. Holman shared with us ways that we can jumpstart our careers, mainly by networking and being confident in ourselves. Other speakers included Jerel Marshall, a Hawks blogger, and Jason Roose, Senior Manager of Media Relations for the Hawks. All of the speakers were very insightful about ways to market ourselves, and divulged great information regarding the industry.

After our Q&A sessions with the guest speakers we were allowed to watch the game from media seating. Considering the circumstances of the game, and how much of a sports fan I am it was a surreal experience.

After the historic game, students were allowed to attend a press conference with Head Coach Larry Drew who was, ecstatic, yet fatigued by the victory. Towards the end of the press conference students were allowed an opportunity to ask Coach Drew some questions of their own about the quadruple-overtime victory and the overall performance of the team. Coach Drew wholeheartedly answered all of the students’ questions and we left the press conference feeling like seasoned journalists.

The Atlanta Hawks College Media Day was a great experience and a golden opportunity to gain insight about broadcasting and sports writing on a professional level. Needless to say, my hat goes off to the entire Hawks Public Relations team for organizing such a great event.

Emily Diekelmann
4 OT’s Help Hawks Take Down Jazz Sunday Night

ATLANTA- It was their third game in as many nights, but that didn’t stop the Atlanta Hawks from getting their third straight victory Sunday night against the visiting Utah Jazz, 139-133. It just took four overtimes to do it.

Forward Joe Johnson led the way for the Hawks with 37 points and eight rebounds. By the end of the game, seven of Atlanta’s players would be in double digits.

“Johnson is a scorer and we put him in positions where he can score the ball,” head coach Larry Drew said. “He is a guy that is a willing passer and he knows that when he gets the double team to get the ball out so we can get a good shot.”

Coming out strong in the first quarter, the Hawks’ duo of Johnson and Josh Smith attributed to 23 of the team’s 29. Pushing the tempo, Atlanta closed out the first with a seven point advantage.

Not slowing down to start the second, Smith added another 10 points to his final point total of 22 as Johnson went cold going 0-for-4 from the field. With less than two minutes left in the half, the Hawks went on a 7-0 run to increase their lead and close out the 2nd up 55-40.

Halftime is exactly what the Jazz, on a six game win streak, needed to jump start their offense. Utah went on an 11-0 run to start the 3rd and shrink Atlanta’s lead to only five. The Jazz would take the lead at the 3:23 mark on a fade away by Paul Millsap.

Both teams went back and forth in the final minutes of the quarter, but Kirk Hinrich’s jumper with 1.4 seconds gave Atlanta the one point advantage, 75-74.

The fourth quarter saw a seesaw battle for the lead with no team gaining more than four on their opponent. With just over a minute left, the Hawks held on to the 98-96 before an Al Jefferson put back helped the Jazz tie it up. Last ditch efforts by both teams fell short and the overtime circus began.

Starting the first overtime, neither team could manage more than one basket which tied the record for the second-lowest combined score in overtime in NBA history.

Gaining a quick lead, the Jazz looked to close out the game in the second overtime, but the Hawks weren’t ready to roll over just yet. Johnson’s three with 7.5 seconds left tied the game up at 113.
Matching each other basket for basket, the Jazz lost the lead seven times before the Hawks finally tied it up again with 29 seconds left in the third overtime.

The fourth and final overtime belonged to the Hawks, who came out strong on a jump shot from Johnson and never looked back. Never letting Utah closer than two, Atlanta closed out the game on a 4-0 run to win their third straight contest.

Johnson and Smith led the way for Atlanta with 37 and 22 points, respectively. Smith added 10 rebounds while center Zaza Pachulia had 15 points with 20 rebounds. Jefferson and Millsap were top scorers for Utah with 28 and 25 points, respectively.

Next up for the Hawks is a trip to Milwaukee to face off with the Bucks on Wednesday. The Jazz continue their road trip with a match-up tonight against New Jersey with tip-off at 7:30.

Jarvis Davis

The Atlanta Hawks have really been on a roll as of late, coming into their matchup against the Utah Jazz on a three game winning streak. Even with this being a grueling part of a back to back to back, with the help of All-Star Joe Johnson, the Hawks pulled out a victory in quadruple overtime 139-133. Johnson finished the game with 37 points carrying the Hawks in overtime as the team’s second leading scorer Josh Smith fouled out.

Joe Johnson has taken on the” carrying the team on my back” pretty well lately, averaging 27 point over the last six games. The role actually looks good on him because the consensus has been that he seems timid when it comes to taking on that leadership role on and off the court.

Johnson got off to a quick start scoring 18 of his 37 points in the first quarter and it looked as if the Hawks were going to run away with this game in the beginning. The Hawks stayed the course in the second quarter with Josh Smith handling his end of the bargain putting up 10 points and at halftime the Hawks were up 55-40.

Fatigue started to set in when the Hawks came out in the second half as they watched their 15 point lead disappear and with 3:16 left in the 3rd quarter they found themselves down 65-64. The Hawks lack of depth down low really hurt them in the 3rd quarter, Jazz Forward Paul Millsap poured in 11 points, 5 rebounds and 3 assists to really take advantage of the Hawks depleted front court. The Hawks were really struggling to score when they went in to overtime and that’s when All-Star Joe Johnson really started to take over.

Head Coach Larry Drew stated that “He(Johnson) performed like an All-Star” really driving home the fact that in order for the Hawks to continue to be successful down the stretch Johnson is going to have to keep putting this team on his back.

April Hatcher
College Day Success


Students hoping to pursue a career in Sports Journalism received a rare opportunity to participate in the Atlanta Hawks annual “College Media Day” held March 25, 2012.
As the Hawks prepared for a game against the Utah Jazz, students from all regions of the country met at Phillips Arena to learn the career steps of a sports journalist. One of the first highlights for many of the students was the opportunity to witness the legendary Dominique Wilkins as he walked into the Media Lounge. The selected few heard speeches from sports journalist veterans such as Sam Crenshaw, Jeff Schultz and the “Voice of the Hawks,” Steve Holman.

Jerel Marshall, a previous participant, gave advice to the students by stating, “College is the time to experiment.” Students asked questions and enjoyed their time in the restricted, “media only,” reserved areas, but nothing could compare to the privilege of seeing history before their own eyes. The Hawks beat the Utah Jazz 139-133 in four overtimes. This was the first four overtime game in NBA since November 1997. Students left the event with a restored plan for success and a story of NBA history to place into their professional resumes. The day was a huge victory for the Atlanta Hawks and those students involved.

Diversify and be open to anything.
By Kelly Sunquest

That was the message portrayed to Georgia-area college students who participated in this year’s annual College Media Day hosted by the Atlanta Hawks. Thirty students interested in sports communications, ranging from college sophomores to Graduate students were invited to experience an NBA game as a professional journalist. Students who participated in this event were able to interact with Hawks staff members, sportswriters and broadcasters to get a first-hand look at what goes on behind the scenes at an NBA game.

All 30 students, including myself, arrived at Philips Arena on Sunday March 25th, 2012 as the Hawks hosted the Utah Jazz. When we arrived, we were prompted to park in the media parking lot and enter the arena through the media entrance. There, we were welcomed, handed our information packet and received our media badge giving us access to areas around the arena. Upon receiving our badge, we were escorted into the cafeteria where we helped ourselves to lunch provided by the Hawks for all media personnel. Unbeknownst to us, we would have the opportunity to have lunch in the same room as Atlanta Hawk’s Vice President of Basketball and Hall of Famer, Dominique Wilkins.

Following lunch, students were escorted upstairs to participate in a pre-game question and answer session with members of print, electronic, and broadcast media outlets. “Diversify. Be outside the box, imagine, and create,” said Sam Crenshaw, sports reporter and anchor for 11Alive News. Crenshaw also had some critical advice for the women looking to break into sports media, “Have something extra in your bag. Know sports most wouldn’t expect you to.” Advice that hit closest to home for me.

With 26 years of experience in radio play-by-play for the Hawks, Steve Holman, also known as “the voice of the Hawks,” also had some crucial advice to give of his own. “Keep yourself open to everything,” he said, “generally, one job leads to another.” One key piece of advice Holman provided was to be persistent and don’t be shy. “This business is all about who you know.” Something that Holman knows all too well himself. Holman has been involved in the NBA since the early 1970’s when he volunteered as a broadcast assistant to the Boston Celtics' late play-by-play legend Johnny Most. Holman's first experience calling a live NBA game came in 1975 when Most lost his voice mid-game. Had Holman not been persistent in volunteering to help Most keep score at each game, he may not have ever been open to the opportunities that lead him to where he is today.

Atlanta Journal Constitution sports columnist Jeff Schultz had a short and simple message, “Be pre-pared to do anything,” he said. Schultz, who was named one of the top 10 columnists in the nation in 2008 among top circulation newspapers by The Associated Press Sports Editors (APSE), along with many other awards such as the top writer in the state of Georgia for 2010 and 2011 by the National Sportscasters and Sportswriters Association, spent most of his time entertaining aspiring journalists with his most memorable cover stories. His most notable that he spoke of was his piece he wrote on Evander Holyfield that broke the news of his ten kids; a story which caused debate among readers, Holyfield supporters, and his peers.

Following the pre-game Q-and-A session, students were escorted to media seating to watch the Hawks beat the Jazz 139-133 in quadruple-overtime. This game would be the Hawks second four-overtime game in franchise history. Unfortunately, the students would miss all four overtime periods as they were escorted to the practice gym with five minutes left in regulation. There, students patiently waited for Head Coach Larry Drew to conduct his post-game press conference for the overtime win.

“I know they were tired. I know they were out of gas, because I was out of gas, but the guys said they wanted to stay in and stick it out. They wanted to play it out, and I rode them,” said Drew in regards to keeping his starters in for all four overtime periods, “This team, it just doesn’t have any quit in it.”

Coach Larry Drew stayed and talked with the students as we were given the opportunity to ask him questions regarding his team’s performance and act as real professional journalists.

The Atlanta Hawks College Media Day was a unique opportunity for college students interested in pursuing post-graduation media careers to gain invaluable insight from some of the best and highly respected professionals in the industry. For most, this day was more than just another opportunity; it was a game changer.

Asha Boston
College Media Day

Soaring Hawks outlast Utah Jazz after 4th overtime.

"The game went into four overtimes!", a popular reaction overhead on a night that made NBA history. Screams of shock and excitement filled the air as hundreds of fans poured out of the Phillips Arena on Sunday night. NBA teams, the Atlanta Hawks and Utah Jazz made history by going into quadruple overtime, making the game the ninth in the league to have ever done so.

The Atlanta Hawks claimed hometown victory by beating Utah Jazz with an end score of 139-133. Hawks coach Larry Drew commented on the win saying, “We got a couple of stops, went down scores but we are standing after we beat four overtimes. Where we are right now is truly remarkable, it certainly shows the resilience of this team."

Starting the game for the Hawks was Zaza Pachulia playing center, Joe Smith forward and guards Kirk Hinrich, Jeff Teague, as well as All-Star Joe Johnson, who scored the team their first points for the night. Johnson surely did not disappoint scoring 18 points with 8 straight field goal shots within the first quarter. “He performed like an All-Star tonight which he has been doing since he has come back from his injury” said Coach Drew. Johnson according to an official NBA news release on the Hawks website on February 22, 2012 confirmed his diagnosis of left knee tendinitis. The statement also released that Johnson missed two games yet he worked through his injury Sunday night showing us why he was chosen as one of the best.

Joe Johnson earned himself the title of Player of the Week by scoring a total of 37 points, beating out Utah Jazz player Al Jefferson during the game, who scored a total of 28 points.

Some pivotal moments in the game were plays made during the third quarter where things began to heat up when Josh Smith made an assist, passing the ball to teammate Zaza Pachulia who scored 2 points for the team. By the end of the third quarter the score was a close 75-74. Coming towards the end of the fourth quarter not many saw what would be coming next. With Utah Jazz behind by 2 points, Jazz player Al Jefferson shot a layup, bringing the score to a tie of 98-98. The Hawks and Jazz ended up battling it out into quadruple overtime which hasn’t been seen in the NBA since 1997. Ending with Johnson bringing the team to victory and a total of 139-133.

This was a momentous moment for the Hawks after a series of back to back games for the previous two nights. The team plans to continue to dominate while they take on East Coast teams such as the Milwaukee, the Chicago Bulls, and the New York Knicks this week. During a press conference between the coach and students involved in the College Media Day program hosted by the Hawks, Coach Drew expressed his opinions on how they will handle the upcoming week, “We do have some big games coming up this week but right now we’re taking this on one at a time.”

The Hawks will be playing against Milwaukee in the Bradley Center on Tuesday March 27 at 8pm.