Hawks still evaluating backup point guard spot

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Hawks still evaluating backup point guard spot

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The newest member of the Atlanta Hawks forward Jose Calderon warms up before the team plays the Golden State Warriors in a NBA basketball game on Monday, March 6, 2017, in Atlanta. Curtis Compton/ccompton@ajc.com

Hawks coach Mike Budenholzer said he is still evaluating the backup point guard position behind starter Dennis Schroder.

The Hawks acquired Jose Calderon earlier this month, and the veteran has been the backup the past four games. Malcolm Delaney served as the backup all season, but did not play in those four games. Budenholzer previously said he wanted to see Calderon play from three to five games before making any decision on the playing rotation.

“We feel like we have two good guys in Jose and Malcolm to be Dennis’ backup,” Budenholzer said Wednesday.

Budenholzer has wanted a third point guard on the roster much of the season. Gary Neal and Lamar Patterson were brought in before the signing of Calderon.

Budenholzer was asked whether a veteran point guard, such as Calderon, would have been beneficial all season behind Schroder as he took over as a first-time starter. Schroder has had several disciplinary issues this season.

“First, to go through the season without a third point guard would not be how we would draw it up, not be the ideal situation,” Budenholzer said. “But I think Malcolm in a lot of ways was a very good offset to Dennis. Maybe because he is new to the NBA he couldn’t mentor him in that way, but I think Malcolm’s disposition and the way he practices and approaches the game — and I didn’t know Malcolm that well — but I’ve been very happy with that combination of personality, that combination of the way they handle themselves.

“No doubt that Jose has been great. Jose is so positive and talking and in Dennis’ face, in everybody’s face. He’s like wow.

“To have both of those guys, I wouldn’t under-sell what Malcolm does. I think he’s been real good next to Dennis.”

Calderon has averaged 4.0 points, 1.3 assists and 0.8 turnovers in 13.5 minutes in his four games. Delaney has averaged 5.6 points, 2.7 assists and 1.3 turnovers in 17.5 minutes in his 63 games.

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