The list of regular-season accomplishments is lengthy:
- The 60 victories easily eclipsed the franchise mark of 57, set in 1986-87 and 1993-94.
- The 25 road victories are a record, besting the 22 wins in 1986-87.
- The 19-game win streak was a franchise best and the fifth-longest streak in NBA history. The run of wins, from Dec. 27-Jan. 31, represented the longest win streak in Atlanta professional sports history.
- That streak included a perfect month, 17-0 in January, a first in NBA history. The Hawks were rewarded by having all five starters — DeMarre Carroll, Al Horford, Kyle Korver, Paul Millsap and Jeff Teague — named the Player of the Month, another league first.
- There were 12-game win streaks, one at home and one on the road, both team records.
- The 13-game win streak against the Eastern Conference is a franchise mark.
- Consecutive wins against the Bulls, Cavaliers, Rockets, Mavericks and Clippers represented opponents with a .685 winning percentage. It was the highest combined winning percentage of any teams Atlanta had beaten in five consecutive games.
- Four starters — Horford, Korver, Millsap and Teague — were named the All-Star team. It was the eighth time in history that one team had four All-Stars in a season.
- They set franchise records with 713,909 in season attendance and 24 sellouts.
And those are just the highlights.
“It means it’s been a great regular season,” Korver said of the success. “It really has been. There have been a lot of really good things that have happened in the city and the organization. We can feel good about 60 wins, but it’s a regular-season accomplishment. We’ll think about those things in a few months. We feel like we are in a good spot. We’ve done what we’ve wanted to do up to this point.”
The chapters on the regular season are closed. The postseason is when the real history will be made. The Hawks have made the postseason eight consecutive years, the longest active streak in the Eastern Conference. However, they have never advanced past the second round, a point of concern and disappointment for the fan base.
The Hawks’ management, coaches and players understand. They have repeated a mantra all season that success will be measured by the postseason. A championship is the goal.
“You can’t get too high on that,” Carroll said of the regular season. “We are preparing for bigger and better things.”
What makes the Hawks’ run more impressive is the firestorm that engulfed the franchise in September. The team and arena are for sale after the discovery of racially insensitive remarks from a 2012 email sent by controlling owner Bruce Levenson. That email was revealed in an internal investigation prompted by comments made by general manager Danny Ferry regarding free-agent target Luol Deng during a June conference call with ownership and management. Ferry has been on an indefinite leave of absence the entire season.
It could have gone south on the Hawks — in a hurry. They started 5-5 and 7-6. They were questioned on whether they were only a .500 team.
They were not.
The Hawks won 33 of their next 35 games, and the re-writing of the record book began.
“It’s definitely special for the Atlanta Hawks organization and our fans,” Horford said. “I’m very proud to be a part of that.”