Lloyd Pierce Atlanta Hawks
Photo: Bleacher Report

The target of the Atlanta Hawks next season will be to qualify for the playoffs, according to the team’s head coach Lloyd Pierce.

The Hawks will not advance to the postseason in 2019/20. However, Pierce has a lot of confidence in his group and isn’t afraid to set the playoffs as a goal for next year.

“Everything that we do is about our team progressing and going forward. Next year, the progression is playoffs. That’s just a natural step. I’m not afraid to say it. Holding each other accountable, me holding them accountable and them holding me accountable is very important for a team to be successful.

We are a playoff team. The guys in that room who will be back here understand that. Now it’s about understanding what that means. I’m not an excuse guy; I’m not making excuses. We’re nine games back with 19 to go. Slim chances. It doesn’t mean that we can’t start processing: What does it take for us to become a playoff team? We have to be grittier.

We have to be more about team. We have to be more about the commitment to making each other better. We have a ton of talent in that room. We have to combine all of that talent with a relentless effort and relentless pursuit of making each other better and holding each other accountable,” Pierce said, via Chris Kirschner of The Athletic.

The Hawks are 19-44 this season, 8.5 games behind the Orlando Magic, who are eighth in the West. Atlanta has not been to the playoffs since 2017.