You have reached your limit of free articles this month.

Enjoy unlimited access to myAJC.com

Starting at just 99¢ for 8 weeks.

GREAT REASONS TO SUBSCRIBE TODAY!

  • IN-DEPTH REPORTING
  • INTERACTIVE STORYTELLING
  • NEW TOPICS & COVERAGE
  • ePAPER
X

You have read of premium articles.

Get unlimited access to all of our breaking news, in-depth coverage and bonus content- exclusively for subscribers. Starting at just 99¢ for 8 weeks

X

Welcome to myAJC.com

This subscriber-only site gives you exclusive access to breaking news, in-depth coverage, exclusive interactives and bonus content.

You can read free articles of your choice a month that are only available on myAJC.com.

Several Hawks join the Falcons’ in ‘brotherhood’


The Hawks have joined the brotherhood.

Several Hawks players were in attendance for the Falcons’ 44-21 victory over the Packers in the NFC Championship game Sunday at the Georgia Dome. The Falcons now face the Patriots in Super Bowl LI on Feb. 5 in Houston. They have dubbed their playoff run “In Brotherhood.”

The Hawks hope the enthusiasm and support for the Falcons remains in Atlanta when it comes time for their postseason run.

“I was very happy for our team to pull it off,” said Dwight Howard, who wore a No. 11 Julio Jones jersey. “Great for the city. I’m just so proud of the Falcons. … Them going into their new (stadium next season) with a Super Bowl ring would be great.”

Coincidentally, the Hawks play at the Rockets in Houston on Feb. 2, just three days before the NFL title game.

In addition to Howard, players Paul Millsap, Tim Hardaway Jr. and Mike Dunleavy (a Packers fan) and CEO Steve Koonin attended the game.

Millsap did not witness the piece of Falcons’ history from a luxury suite. He chose to watch from the stands.

“It was great,” Millsap said. “I was actually in the midst of it. I was fan in the midst of the crowd. I felt the energy of the (Georgia) Dome. It was amazing. While doing that, you hope that one day your stadium is like that – our stadium is full and the fans are going crazy. Our fans have done a good job of doing that and hopefully it continues to get better.”

He said he was a part of the crowd because he wanted to experience “the full effect” of the victory.

Hawks coach Mike Budenholzer said he watched the Falcons win from home. He was in attendance for the victory over the Seahawks the previous week, a game many thought would be the final football played in the Georgia Dome. However, when the Packers defeated the Cowboys last weekend, the Falcons earned the right to host the NFC Championship for one final contest before the Mercedes-Benz Stadium opens next season.

No surprisingly but even with the Falcons’ potent offensive attack, Budenholzer credited the defensive effort.

“The Falcons are rolling,” Budenholzer said. “It’s so much fun. It’s so much fun to watch them. They are so good on both sides of the ball. Everybody talks about how great they are offensively, defensively what they were able to do the first half and really the whole game, it’s just fun to watch a team that is playing that well and that together.

“The city is excited for them. The energy in the dome was great. We send lots of good luck and hope for the best over the next two weeks in the Super Bowl.”

Following the Hawks victory over the 76ers on Saturday, the eve of the NFC Championship, Howard stood by his preseason prediction of a Falcons-Patriots Super Bowl. On Monday, he admitted an allegiance to the AFC representative but said he is pulling for his hometown Falcons.

“The Patriots have been my favorite team because of Tom Brady and he wore No. 12,” Howard said. “That my number for a long time. Anybody who wore No. 12, I was rooting for them. Tom Brady, Randy Moss and those guys, I fell in love with them. Now, I’m torn. But I want to see the hometown team win. I think it would be great for our city and just bring people together.”

As an Atlanta sports fan, Howard admitted to some degree of nervousness when the Packers finally scored their first touchdown – even though it made the score 31-7 in the third quarter.

“The crowd got nervous even though you know we are going to win the game,” Howard said.



Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Atlanta Hawks

Draft Day Thread: Best player available?
Draft Day Thread: Best player available?

The first-round draft board from a year ago. (Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images) Who you got? The Hawks, as of this morning at least, have three picks on tonight’s NBA Draft – Nos.
What Millsap max contract looks like with new salary cap projection
What Millsap max contract looks like with new salary cap projection

Multiple reports surfaced on Wednesday night that NBA teams have been informed that the 2017-18 salary cap is now projected to be $99 million. ESPN’s Brian Windhorst reported that a memo was sent to teams with the adjusted figure. That is a $5 million increase from last season but a $2 million decrease than the once projected $101 million. Hawks...
Hawks assistant Spahija named head coach of Maccabi Tel Aviv
Hawks assistant Spahija named head coach of Maccabi Tel Aviv

Hawks assistant coach Neven Spahija has been named head basketball coach of Maccabi Tel Aviv and will return overseas to continue his career. Spahija’s agent, Danko Drakulic, posted on Twitter that a contract had been signed. David Pick reported that the deal runs through 2020 with the team in Israel. Spahija indicated such a deal probable earlier...
Five players the Hawks could select at No. 19
Five players the Hawks could select at No. 19

The Hawks have the No. 19 overall pick of the first round in Thursday’s NBA Draft. General manager Travis Schlenk said the Hawks are looking at nine players the team figures to be available with the selection. Schlenk declined to identify the specific players but has said the Hawks will draft the best player available with an emphasis on character...
My analysis of Howard trade: It was about locker room not court
My analysis of Howard trade: It was about locker room not court

The Atlanta Hawks’ Dwight Howard squeezes the ball before the start of play against the Miami Heat at AmericanAirlines Arena in Miami on Wednesday, Feb. 1, 2017. (David Santiago/Miami Herald/TNS) Dwight Howard didn’t change. The Atlanta native is no longer a member of the Hawks. The former eight All-Star and three-time NBA Defensive Player...
More Stories