HW's Atlanta Offseason ReviewKey Losses:
This was a team with the 28th best defense and the 23rd best offense. They were a bottom 5 team when 4 other teams tanked brazenly. Losing a pair of so so vets in Dedmon and Bazemore is not a key loss, neither fit the team's long term core. And I will say that Prince being a subpar rotational player on a bottom 5 team with highly questionable defensive metrics while being old for a rookie contract player and one year from a eh, pay him him or let him go for free stage makes him not a key lose. It was the perfect time to sell low, before prices dropped further.Losses:
Getting rid of a 22 year old project center taken with a first round pick (even barely one) after just 1 year is the closest thing to a key loss the Hawks had. I debated talking myself into listing it as a key loss, even if there is a 90% chance he ends up out of the league in 2 years.Draft:
I'm a little worried by the critiques I hear about Hunter. Bad handle, slow shot, 22 this season, no elite skills. Better shooting Evan Turner is all I hear, and seeing statistical modes down on him along with the alarming weaknesses isn't great.
I've heard his defense will be great. I have concerns there too. 22 steals in 38 games scares me. Steals tend to be a nice stat for translating college to the NBA, and a feel for how active a guys motor is. (Yes, they can be a bad sign in the nba, of a guy who goes for the big play and gives up the easy layups as a result).
My draft takes this year will be less substantial than they have been previously, but I'm not a fan of the pick especially given the cost to move up.
Reddish fixes much of what is wrong with Hunter (A full extra steal a game, two years younger, more upside), and then has a sub 50% TS%. I'm okay with the pick, but it clearly has bust potential because it also has boom potential and I probably would have gone a little different here as well.
It should be interesting, because both players had some red flags enough that you saw takes beforehand like:
Some of the players who might be drafted highly but our model isn’t as fond of include Virginia’s De’Andre Hunter (fifth in the scout rankings vs. 14th in our projections), Duke’s Cam Reddish (seventh vs. 12th),
Bruno apparently takes over as the new Spellman, which is good as that spot opened up.Trades:
Hard to seperate the trades from the picks. But in short I would be much happier with Hayes and NAW on Atlanta than Hunter even before they took on the money of Hill.
I ****loved**** the Crabbe trade for Atlanta. Absolutely loved it. NAW will be great as part of the core.
Having a first in 20 when Durant might not come back and Kyrie could toxically mess the team up is an awesome rebuilding asset, and this is exactly the sort of trade I think they should have done. Prince was at his sell by now or get stuck holding the bag stage. Perfect style move for a team in Atlantas position.
That said, I come to the trade with new orleans and I wish I saw Hunter as a clear cut future starter, as then it is worth the move. But they traded 8, 17, and the cap space of basically another 17 for a guy who within a day of the draft was at one point mocked 7 by espn. If this was a move up for a Luka style prospect, I love the ballsiness and $1.50 in change for a $1 piece is worth it. I just don't see the $1 piece, and thus don't like it.
For swapping out bad contracts, I have no issue. Sure, might as well put all your worthless money in less roster spots, although I would cut him and make it in zero roster spots. And I am not sure how Atlanta didn't get a 2nd swapping Bazemore for Turner. I feel like they should have been able to get slightly less money back, even if the player was more worthless. Mozgov and 2nd for Bazemore; something like that. Turner is a much better sf than a pg, so the whole idea of it seems off unless it is trying to tank?
As mentioned in the losses, I am not a big fan of cashing out Spellman after just one season. It probably is fine but I would be a touch more patient with a raw bigman.
Then we get to the 2nd rounders. They sold 1.5 of the 2 they had, getting back half the value in cash for one and all he vaue for cash in the other. And then they turned around and traded to better 2nds to get back up to 34. I would much have preferred to see them not lose the good seconds (2020 Atlanta 2nd and the best of ABC in 2023) and instead move up with 41 and 44 (which should get you to 34ish.). Future draft assets got depleted.Free Agency:
Would rather see 2/18 with a TO than 2/13 with a PO for Jabari. Atlanta either created a mild bad contract or will have to renegotiate with an ufa in 1 year. I just don't see the upside to the team here.Current Depth Chart: (taken from realgm with reason added in)
Well, that team should stay bottom 5 Again, I'm low on the fit of Turner at backup pg, the entire center rotation (including Len), and the roster is relying on youth to an extent that probably won't result in many wins. Needs:
A third core prospect to go with Collins and Trae. Did they get that yet? Hopefully it is Hunter and/or Reddish. And fundamentally, as with all rebuild teams, a blue chip of a single star to build around as possible, in this superstar league.Additional Thoughts:
Len is the starter. Bembry is still in the league. It will be interesting to see how active the Hawks are with an trades of their remaining older players, after having sat on their hands previously.
Projected Win/Loss: 26-56
Take their lumps and get ready to add one more offseason of improvements through draft and trade.
[u]Off-Season Grade: [u] C-
It all depends on how Hunter and Reddish pan out. But I'm not in love with the gambles after loving how they started off. Could have been a straight C.