--The Hawks' most recent foray with a rookie point guard went up in smoke earlier this summer when they traded Acie Law IV to Golden State in a deal that netted G Jamal Crawford.Law never did develop the way everyone hoped and his rocky relationship with coach Mike Woodson was one of the reasons. The two never did get on the same page, a rift that came to a head this summer when both sides decided a parting of the ways was in order. So now that Teague is in the fold, the Hawks know they have to manage the player-coach dynamic much better this time around.
And that's where assistant coach Larry Drew comes in. He'll have to guard against any sort of psychological fatigue where Teague is concerned.
"He's got a long career ahead of him," Drew said. "We've got to nurture him the right way as a young point guard and make sure his path is the proper one."
Teague has own business to tend to, as well. He still isn't familiar with his new teammates. And he doesn't even have a permanent place to stay in Atlanta. In fact, he hasn't even begun searching.
"My mom is coming to look around and pick something out," Teague said. "I told her whatever she chooses is fine with me. Things are starting to settle down, though. At least I'm back on the court, that's the most important thing for me."
--Two faces no one expected to see at the Hawks' mini-camp were international second-round picks Cenk Akyol and Sergiy Gladyr.
Foreign draft picks of the Hawks in 2005 (Akyol, 22, is from Turkey) and last month (Gladyr, 19, is from the Ukraine), both players came to Atlanta so coach Mike Woodson and his staff would have a chance to evaluate them in person as opposed to the usual grainy film.
"This game is totally different here," Akyol said. "The set plays, the rhythm of the game. It's totally different. Nothing is similar."
Woodson wanted to see both players perform in mini-camp for that reason. He didn't get the chance to see Gladyr in scrimmage situations. Gladyr was not cleared in time by FIBA, the world's governing body for basketball, and was not allowed to participate.
That they even showed up impressed Woodson.
"It really shows me something that they came here and wanted to be a part of this," Woodson said of the two 6-foot-5, shooting guards. "It says a lot about their competitiveness that they'd want to be a part of this, because there are guys in mini-camps willing to walk on fire to make an impression. And when those guys see a draft pick out there, they see an opportunity to make a name for themselves at the expense of those draft picks. So you have to be on top of your game."
QUOTE TO NOTE: "These guys are hungry. They're looking at this thing the way I'm looking at it. They know the Eastern Conference is much better. So that first day of training camp we have to be ready. There can't be any messing around. We have to get to work immediately and prepare for what we know will be a fight, and that's just in our division with Orlando, Miami, Washington and Charlotte all scrapping for the same things." -- Hawks coach Mike Woodson, on his team's motivation this season in an improved Eastern Conference.