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Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Josh Childress goes Greek

You could see this one coming. The Olympiakos, the Greek professional basketball team, flew Josh Childress over to Greece. They wined and dined him, and then offered him a three-year, $20 million contract In Euros. They're even going to pay his taxes. And he signed up.

And what were the Atlanta Hawks doing during all this, and in the months leading up to this? Obviously, twittling their thumbs. In the process, they've lost one of the top bench players in the NBA, a firebrand of energy who seemed to have a knack for being in the right place at the right time.

Gone untold on the sports page of the AJC is the story behind why Josh Smith doesn't want to play for the Hawks, and why Childress doesn't want to play here. I've seen reports elsewhere that both players have a beef with Coach Mike Woodson.

For the long-term ramifications, check out John Hollinger's take on ESPN.com. Writes Hollinger: "The fact that Childress didn't think twice about leaving -- and that Josh Smith seemingly would gladly pack his bags too -- speaks volumes about the management. So does the fact that Atlanta is among NBA players' favorite cities to visit, and yet nobody wants to play here."

And just when the city was finally starting to embrace the Hawks ...

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