Atlanta Hawks Mailbag – Sellers At The Trade Deadline

Ab Stanley

The Atlanta Hawks are in full rebuild mode. They currently sport the Eastern Conferences worst record, which means they hold one of the best chances at the number one draft pick this summer. As the trade deadline approaches, the Hawks should look to be sellers instead of buyers.

Kent Bazemore’s contract has three years and about $54 million in salary left. That includes a $19 million player option for the 2019-2020 season. The Hawks would love to move his contract and right now is a great time. In his last five games he’s raised his scoring average to 17.5, leading the team in scoring for a few games. Getting a team to bite while he’s hot might make for a better trade.

Marco Belinelli has been the Hawks best player off their bench. He’s averaging 11.4 points per game and shooting .372% from three point range. Belinelli has one year and just under $7 million left on a three year deal. He’s garnered interest from the Miami Heat and Boston Celtics in recent days and it seems imminent that he will get moved.

Ersan Ilyasova has been a great role player for the Hawks this season. He’s averaging 10.7 points and 5.5 rebounds per game. He’s also been pretty good on the defensive side. He signed a one year $6 million deal to remain with the Hawks this season. Ilyasova has the right to reject any trade because he is on a one year deal and eligible for “Bird rights” next season. He would accept a trade to the right team but wouldn’t mind finishing out the season with Atlanta.

The Hawks should explore any and every option in the trade market. Outside of point guard Dennis Schroeder and small forward Taurean Prince, none of the Hawks should be untouchable. With a top pick looming, adding more picks and having cap space simultaneously would make for a better Hawks team going forward.

Ab Stanley

Atlanta, GA

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