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Report: Hawks players complaining to each other about selfishness, work ethic, accountability

Hawks coach Lloyd Pierce and Trae Young

INDIANAPOLIS, IN - NOVEMBER 29: Head coach Lloyd Pierce of the Atlanta Hawks talks to Trae Young #11 during a game against the Indiana Pacers at Bankers Life Fieldhouse on November 29, 2019 in Indianapolis, Indiana. The Pacers defeated the Hawks 105-104 in overtime. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images) NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)

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The Hawks aren’t just bad.

They’re lose-by-23-to-the-Knicks bad.

Last night’s setback in New York has awakened some demons.

Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports:

Frustration in the locker room has been building for some time as teammates have complained to each other about selfishness, not putting in the necessary work to turn things around and players not being held accountable, sources told Yahoo Sports.
Atlanta Hawks head coach Lloyd Pierce is not on the hot seat, league sources told Yahoo Sports.
But there is work that needs to be done to strengthen the connection with a few significant players, sources said.

It’s hard to believe this doesn’t center on Trae Young, who reportedly showed his frustration in an “emotional locker room scene” then got told by a Hawks official that roster help was incoming.

Young is in the midst of a breakout year. He is a star.

But he also plays awful defense and gets too sloppy with the ball. He contributes to Atlanta’s losing.

It’s fine for a 21-year-old not to have down all the finer points of winning basketball. Young is still right on track. But I can see how it’d be grating if Young is blaming everyone else for the Hawks’ struggles. He’s culpable, too.

There’s usually grumbling on losing teams. When it leaks into the public, it has reached another level. That’s where Atlanta is.

John Collins returning from his suspension will help. But he’s also a young player still learning how to translate his ability into winning. So are many Hawks.

This losing is a natural consequence of Atlanta’s rebuild. Playoff expectations for this season were misplaced. It will take the Hawks time to grow into that level.

In the meantime, they must weather this storm.