Analysis of the Atlanta Hawks
Before we dive into why the Atlanta Hawks have been so successful this year, lets first look at the assets that they have going forward.
The Hawks as of now are set to have around $22 million in cap this summer, however, I imagine that most of it will be spent on retaining current key players like Paul Millsap, and DeMarre Carroll. That being said they should still have enough money left over to add role players from the bargain bin. Usually its uncommon to see a team that is dominating the league, have plenty of assets going forward, but the Hawks are no normal team. The Hawks valuable assets come in the form of draft picks. They don't have any outgoing draft picks, and a slue of incoming ones. They have the right to swap draft picks with Brooklyn, which will give them a much more favorable draft position then they are currently on pace for. In addition, they are owed 2nd rounders in 2015 from Toronto, a 2017 2nd from Brooklyn and a protected 2nd in 2018 from Miami. To go along with these incoming picks they own every single one of their future picks. With all of these assets the Hawks have plenty of assets they can flip for a veteran or use to acquire youth. It is rare to see a championship level team have the assets that they can flip to add to their current group of quality players.
One of the biggest surprises of the NBA season so far has been the success of the Atlanta Hawks. Not many people could have predicted their success. When looking into why the Hawks are playing so well you have to start with their style of play. Their ball movement is fantastic, they move the ball from side to side, which is hard to defend, and they use many off ball screens and cuts to keep the defense from getting set. Starting with their point guard play, Jeff Teague is having his best year yet. He is so skilled and penetrating and collapsing defenses that he has the option to score on a drive, pull up, or pass out. And with shooters like Kyle Korver, the defense can't afford to collapse. I think that the Hawks biggest strength is their big man pair of Al Horford and Paul Millsap. These big men create a huge mismatch for opponents because, both are more than capable scorers, who can space the floor, and both are very good passing big men. Every single player on the Hawks is a more than willing passer, which creates so many problems for defenses, because you can't home in on one player. The Hawks are very well balanced and deep team. As of right now the Hawks rank 6th in the league in points per game, 2nd in assists per game and 1st in fewest points allowed. Their one weakness as a team has been rebounding, where they rank 25th in the league in rebounds per game. After doing some research on players who have a high rebounding percentage and who can fit the Hawks system as a willing passer, I think it would be wise for the Hawks to trade for Lavoy Allen. Allen, 25, is currently on the Indiana Pacers. He comes off the bench for them and plays 22 minutes a game. The reason he is a good fit for the Hawks is because in limited playing time he is averaging 6.9 rpg to go along with 6.8ppg and 1.4 apg. Another way to tell how good of a rebounder Allen is, is by looking at his per 36 stats, where he is averaging 11.2rpg. Lavoy Allen would fit with the Hawks because he fills a need of a rebounding big off the bench, he also is a good passing big men which fits right into their system, also he wouldn't cost the Hawks a ton of assets. Looking at the Hawks draft pick assets, I imagine they could get him for a 2nd rounder, maybe 2 seconds. Either way they wouldn't be losing any super valuable assets and they would be making a smart move that helps fill their biggest need. Its not the super sexy move, however it is one that is attainable, realistic, and most of all beneficial.