|2017-18 W/L: 24-58||2018-19 W/L: 29-53|
Finished 12th in the eastern conference (Missed Playoffs)
Team Needs: SF, PF
Pick 1: 1st Round-8th Overall
Pick 2: 1st Round-10th Overall
Players who could be available and fit with these two picks:
Pick 3: 1st Round-17th Overall
Players who could be available and fit with this pick:
Pick 4: 2nd Round-35th Overall
Pick 5: 2nd Round-41st Overall
Pick 6: 2nd Round-44th Overall
Players who could be available and fit with these three picks:
Atlanta saw a small improvement in their numbers of win from the 2017-18 to the 2018-19 campaign, but given they had 24 wins two seasons ago there was a low bar to improve. Despite the wins not being significantly more, the franchises young talent began to show what the potential they have as we got deeper into the season. Early in the year many fans and analysts were saying that the Hawks got robbed by the Dallas Mavericks in the Luka Doncic/Trae Young trade. As with many things related to professional sports this was an overreaction to a trade that will take years before any can reasonably determine a winner or loser. Young simply did not shoot the ball well in the beginning of the year, and as those shots began to fall more consistently he became the dynamic scorer that many were projecting him to be. How well he played in his rookie season as a whole will give the team confidence they have their point guard of the future, and Kevin Huerter will most likely play a major role going forward as well. John Collins has become a star playing both power forward and center, and his versatility gives the team plenty of options as far as other big men to pair with Collins. Atlanta traded Taurean Prince to Brooklyn for the #17 pick in this years draft and Allen Crabbe, giving them an opportunity to potentially add a small forward in the draft to their young core. The franchise will have cap space to go after some of the bigger name free agents, but given the amount of picks they currently posses, they could try and trade up or just choose their picks as is and try to build a young/cheap nucleus of players to grow together. Their financial situation is pretty well in order and next year they will presumably get Kent Bazemore and Miles Plumlee off of the books who both would be considered overpaid by many, although Bazemore has been a solid player in Atlanta. Alex Len has showed promise since he came over from the Suns, but it is unclear if he will be apart of the teams long term plans after this upcoming season.
The Hawks have six picks in the draft, giving them a ton of flexibility in what they can do around draft night. These picks could be used to package together and move up in the draft or to grab a future first round pick. In addition to this, they could draft a player with the intention of trading him to acquire a veteran if that is the route they would like to go. There is also the possibility that the franchise could hold on to all of their picks and then send some of those players to the G League until they are ready for to compete on the NBA level. For now we have to assume they will be using their picks as they are now, which would mean they will be taking on 6 players with three being in the second round with one to two of those second round picks not likely to make the roster immediately. Because of the amount of picks they have the team will most likely be in a best player available scenario with their picks outside of the top ten. Cam Reddish seems to be the popular choice to end up going #8 to the Hawks, but Jarrett Culver or DeAndre Hunter would be in consideration if they fall to #8. With the #10 selection a power forward would make the most sense if they go with a small forward at #8, and PJ Washington or Rui Hachimura could both fit well. Nassir Little, Keldon Johnson, Sekou Doumbouya, and Brandon Clarke could all be in play if they want to add another scorer on the wing. Jaxson Hayes might be an option at #10 but with John Collins playing as well as he has it might make more sense to have Collins primarily playing as a center surrounded by four other shooters. In the second round with 3 picks the Hawks will have a chance to take a flyer on a player or possibly take an international prospect in a center a draft and stash type of situation. With that said there are high upside players who have a second round draft stock for a variety of reasons that are slated to go in the range of their three picks. Point guards like Ky Bowman, Jalen Lecque and Jordan Bone could help add depth to the position, while wings like Darius Bazley, Ignas Brazdeikis, KZ Okpala, Jaylen Hoard and more could be available and make an impact on the NBA level after some type getting comfortable in the professional game. Jalen Mcdaniels has a higher upside then most of the second round prospects that we have analyzed, and he could available while the Hawks are on the clock. If they want college veterans who can shoot the three they could take players like Eric Paschall or Grant Williams. If we were drafting for Atlanta we would take a wing like Jarrett Culver, De’Andre Hunter, or Cam Reddish depending on which player is still on the board at #8 which they all could be gone at that point. For #10 overall we would take a power forward that can stretch the four like PJ Washington Rui Hachimura, followed up by another wing like Nassir Little, Sekou Doumbouya, or Keldon Johnson if they are still available at #17. Once the second round comes it would become best player available adding players that can score from the outside to go with the style of play that Trae Young brings to the table.