Devil Dish: Josh Smith influential to Hawks

Whether you get traded before the deadline or walk in free agency, Josh Smith, you’ve done a lot for the Atlanta Hawks franchise.

Along with Al Horford and Joe Johnson, you built the Hawks franchise up from being the worst team in the NBA into perennial playoff entrants.

You are one of the most electrifying players in the NBA and are unguardable in the fast break.

There’s a reason Philips Arena is nicknamed “The Highlight Factory.” It’s you.

Still, you are one of the more underappreciated players in the league.

No All-Star game selections in nine NBA seasons? That’s a disgrace. The last five years have resulted in Hawks playoff appearances.

I’ve always endured a love-hate relationship with you.

Many times I yelled at the TV when you shot a three-pointer or a long-range two. With a career 28.8 percentage for three-point field goals, it’s not hard to see why it can be frustrating.

The often-questioned shot selection, however, is outweighed by all the other things you can do. Defend the paint, run the break, finish at the rim, among others.

When you leave, it’s going to mark a new era in Hawks basketball. I’ve had fun along the ride.

 

Reach the reporter at justin.janssen@asu.edu