2018 Atlanta Hawks Season Preview

ATLANTA HAWKS

2016 Record:  43 – 39

Playoffs:  2-4     Lost to Wizards in first round

 Additions

Trades

  1. G Marco Belinelli – via Charlotte
  2. C Miles Plumlee – via Charlotte
  3. Cash Considerations – via Houston

Draft

  1. PF John Collins – #19 pick
  2. PG Tyler Dorsey – #41 pick via Charlotte

Free Agency

  1. F Mike Muscala 2-year, $10M
  2. C DeWayne Dedmon 2-year, $14M
  3. PF Ersan Ilyasova 1-year, $6M
  4. SF Luke Babbit 1-year, ?M

Losses

Trades

  1. C Dwight Howard – to Charlotte
  2. F Ryan Kelly –  to Houston

Free Agency

  1. PF Paul Millsap – Signed with Nuggets for three-years, $90 million
  2. G Tim Hardaway – Signed with Knicks for four-years, $71 million
  3. G Mike Dunleavy – Waived

Front Office

Named Travis Schlenk general manager and director of basketball operations

Roster

Kent Bazemore SF 28 $16,910,113
Dennis Schroder PG 23 $15,500,000
Miles Plumlee C 28 $12,500,000
Marco Belinelli SG 31 $6,060,606
Dewayne Dedmon C 28 $6,000,000
Ersan Ilyasova PF 30 $6,000,000
Mike Muscala PF 26 $5,000,000
Malcolm Delaney G 28 $2,500,000
Taurean Prince SF 23 $2,422,560
John Collins PF 19 $1,936,920
DeAndre’ Bembry SF 23 $1,567,200
Luke Babbitt SF 28 $1,471,382
Nicolas Brussino SF 24 $1,312,611
Quinn Cook PG 24 $1,312,611
Tyler Dorsey SG 21 $815,615
Kris Humphries PF 32

Review and Outlook

The Hawks showed patience by not overpaying 32-year-old Paul Millsap to stay with the team.  He was a team leader with a solid 18 PER.  That said, the numbers just do not add up for the money Denver gave him.  For context, here are the 3 most highly paid players next season:

Stephen Curry GSW $34,682,550
LeBron James CLE $33,285,709
Paul Millsap DEN $31,269,231

The loss of Tim Hardaway will hurt.  With Kent Bazemore already slotted in as the team’s highest-paid player, the money just did not make sense for the Hawks.

A lot of pundits think the Tim Hardaway deal with the Knicks was a big overpay, I disagree.  Hardaway is an improving young player that can already provide a nice scoring spark when needed.  He fits the rebuilding theme in NY and is not a desperate signing just to compete.

The Hawks will be missing Dwight Howard’s 21 PER and 13.5pts/12.7reb.  While a far cry from his superstar days, Superman was playing with energy and enthusiasm for Atlanta.

Who will step up to replace the scoring and rebounding lost by the core of Millsap and Howard?  A combination of Dwayne Dedmon, Ersan Ilyasova, and Miles Plumlee can soak up minutes but are a major downgrade in talent.  Dennis Schroder can be expected to shoulder some of the scoring load.

Rookie John Collins has supreme athleticism and can contribute defensively right away while providing efficient low post scoring.  Looking for a reason to watch the Hawks?  This is it.

This is a team clearly looking to rebuild and re-tool (finally) instead of just showing up in the playoffs to lose in the first few rounds.  Expectations should be low this year, with a focus on stockpiling assets and developing young talent.


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