ATL Hawks Free Agent Pursuits
Here's a look at the roster as of June 29th, 2009:
FC - Al Horford / (vacant) / Randolph Morris
F - Josh Smith / (vacant) / (vacant)
GF - (vacant) / Maurice Evans / (vacant)
G - Joe Johnson / (vacant) / (vacant)
PG - Jamal Crawford / Jeff Teague / (vacant)
RESTRICTED HAWK FREE AGENTS:
~ Marvin Williams, SF. He's still only 23 and improving every year. This season, he showed the ability to knock down the 3, and even take over games where Johnson couldn't play or wasn't up to his best. The biggest question this offseason will be Marvin or Mike (Bibby), because it doesn't look like the Hawks will pay to bring back both.
~ Josh Childress, SF. His rights still belong to the Hawks, but unless the Hawks plan on trading his rights, he'll end up opting to stay in Greece, and pursue new options next summer.
~ Solomon Jones, PF. He has improved every year since putting on a Hawks jersey, and it'd be ashamed to see him flourish with another team, but with so many roster spots to fill, my best guess is some team like the Thunder or the Grizzlies swoops in early, and steals Jones before the Hawks are ready to make a decision on him.
~ Othello Hunter, PF. With Jones possibly on his way out, look for the Hawks to lock up Hunter for at least two season with a deal similar to what they gave Morris last year.
~ Mario West, G. A favorite of Mike Woodson, West has been popular in the city of Atlanta now for six years. I'd expect to see the Hawks lock West up for a couple of years, but it may costs them more than Hawks' fans think he's worth.
~ Thomas Gardner, SG. With the additions of Crawford and Teague, the one guy who definitely won't be back in Atlanta is Gardner. If the Hawks wanna add depth at the guard spot, it'll be a guy who's more defensive minded than Gardner.
UNRESTRICTED HAWKS FREE AGENTS:
~ Mike Bibby, PG. Whether you like him or not, Bibby was extremely valuable at getting the Hawks to the position they are in. However, Bibby's value may tap out there, which is why you're probably gonna see the Hawks going in a different direction this offseason. Why? Well, one concern is that Bibby gave Joe Johnson too much of the offensive, and that's what caused Joe's collapse heading into the playoffs. What the Hawks may need is a penetrating PG who can get Horford more involved in the offense.
~ Flip Murray, SG. The life Murray provided off the bench last year was invaluable, but with the acquisitions of both Crawford and Teague, the need for immediate offense greatly decreased. Look for Flip to be in a different uniform next season, as the Hawks will look to fill their roster with a guard you may be a little more defensive minded.
~ Zaza Pachulia, C. Zaza's situation is interesting. He's not worth more than the $4M the Hawks paid him last season, and he was huge in the Boston series in 2008. And, rumor has it, the Spurs are interested in him. Plus, the Hawks own the rights to a talented Aussie who played in Barcelona last year, named David Andersen. Add all that up, and it looks as if Zaza has played his last game in a Hawks uni.
FREE AGENTS THE HAWKS COULD PURSUE:
~ Raymond Felton, PG (RFA). He might be the perfect PG for the Hawks. We all know that the Hawks run an Iso-Joe offense, and that Smith, Horford, and Williams would greatly benefit from playing with a penetrating PG. Felton is that type of player. Now, Jordan has already said that Felton will be coming back next season, but how could he not say that about a fellow Tar Heel. My guess is the right offer (and it doesn't even have to be that much) would cause the Bobcats to settle for a sign-and-trade with Felton. But how does he compare to...
~ Ramon Sessions, PG (RFA). With Brandon Jennings being drafted, and the Bucks picking up Sessions offer sheet, it is clear they wanna get something from him in return. He is more coveted than Felton, and probably the most coveted FA PG of the summer, so it'll be harder for the Hawks to lure him to ATL, unless the blow the Bucks away with an offer that could include more than Sessions is actually worth. This would be a hard choice for the Hawks, but Sessions seems to be the third option for the Hawks, not the first, simply because he'll cost too much.
~ Jarrett Jack, PG (RFA). While Atlanta fans would love to see Jack back in ATL, I'm not so sure it'd be the best for the Hawks. Jarrett has not established himself as a legit starter for a PLAYOFF team, and that's what the Hawks need. Jack's role in the future will be the best guard on the second unit. Also, he's been a defensive liability at times as he's not quite quick enough to consistently guard the faster players, and not quite tall enough to guard the longer players. If the Hawks choose Jack over Bibby or Felton or Sessions, it'll mean they trust Crawford and Teague to run the show, and want Jack for depth purposes.
~ Matt Barnes, SF. If we're not gonna spend the money to resign Marvin Williams, then it means the Hawks are not interested in spending a lot of money at this spot on the roster. So, let's look at a quartet of guys the Hawks could pursue beginning with Matt Barnes. He can hit the three and play solid one-on-one defense. He also has the reputation of being a great teammate, and having a never-ending motor. He'd be a great addition to the Hawks, but his success with the Warriors may cause a few teams to start a mini-bidding war for his services, and like I said, if the Hawks wouldn't be willing to spend the money on Marvin, then they surrender their post in that battle.
~ Linas Kleiza, SF. He is my favorite swing man available, but getting him into a Hawks uniform may be difficult. There are rumors that the Raptors, Pistons, and Grizzlies all have interest in Kleiza, and can probably offer him more money. I won't get my hopes up about this guy.
~ Von Wafer, SG. He's long and athletic, and he showed up big time for the Rockets over the course of the season and into the playoffs. The only probably with Wafer is he's a lot more offensively minded than he is defensively, therefore, he'd have a hard time pushing Maurice Evans and Jamal Crawford for playing time. However, if the Hawks were willing to wait until deep into the FA period, Wafer could be had for a relative bargain, if the Rockets wanted to fill their roster without him.
~ James Singleton, GF. Again, if the Hawks let Marvin go, that means they don't wanna overpay for this position, and Anderson proved to be a valuable commodity for the Mavs this season. When Gerald Green proved he wasn't gonna be reliable, it was Singleton who stepped up and filled the gap. He's older, but if the Hawks resigned Bibby, and not Marvin. Then pushed Crawford to the 2, and Joe to the 3, then Singleton would be a great compliment to Evans coming off the bench.
~ Mehmet Okur, C. I cannot believe Okur would consider opting out. He'd be guaranteed $9M next season, and the market next summer could pay him more money, but, oh well. He's a tremendous shooter, and a good rebounder. This guy would be the perfect compliment to Horford and Smith down low. However, signing him would probably mean that the Hawks wouldn't bring back Marvin or Bibby, unless Marvin only played for the $7.5M option. Also, Sund has repeatedly said Horford is the center because he doesn't like the idea of Horford playing defense against the new type of PF (Dirk, Lewis, Odom)
~ David Andersen, FC. The Hawks already own the rights to him, and unlike the other Andersen (Chris Andersen) he'd be a lot cheaper. David Andersen has proven himself in the Euro leagues, and, according to most scouts, is ready to make an impact in the NBA. I think he'd fit in great if the Hawks were to lose Zaza. If the Hawks resign Zaza, then I'd look to package Andersen in a deal with Josh Childress' rights for one of these RFAs available.
~ Marcin Gortat, C. The truth is that Gortat is looking for a situation where he can start. While the Hawks seems to have an open spot at the center position, it is believed they will only spend their money to add depth to the frontline. Needless to say, he'd be a great option if the Hawks lost out on Zaza and Andersen (either).
~ Brandon Bass, PF. Although short for the position, Bass has proved to be very efficient at rebounding and scoring from close range. He'd be a great addition to the Hawks bench, but with so many teams in pursuit, I'd expect him to sign for the most money he could get.
~ Hakim Warrick, F. Not the most exciting FA, but perhaps the best option for the Hawks to pursue. He's versatile, athletic, and seems to be underappreciated where he's at. My guess is the right offer would easily get him out of Memphis.
MY PROJECTED ROSTER FOR 2009-10:
FC - Al Horford / David Andersen / Randolph Morris
F - Josh Smith / Hakim Warrick / Othello Hunter
GF - Marvin Williams / Maurice Evans / James Singleton
G - Joe Johnson / Jamal Crawford / Mario West
PG - Raymond Felton / Jeff Teague / Curtis Jerrells
While the resigning of Marvin Williams acquisitions of Felton, Warrick, and Andersen may push the Hawks a bit too much over the salary cap than the owners would prefer, I think this team would stay among the best of the east, and contend for the Eastern Conference title next season.
I wonder if Mike Bibby actually hurt Joe Johnson instead of helping him? I mean, Joe has been THE guy in Atlanta for four years, but come playoff time, Joe seems worn out.
~ Could that be because the Hawks need a penetrating PG, and not a guy who forces Joe to do all the penetrating?
~ Couldn't the reason the Hawks really drafted Teague is because they knew that Bibby's inability to penetrate (and, yes, I laugh ever time I use any form of the word "penetrate") gave them a bit of security going into the FA period?
Everyone here knows my displeasure for the Hawks #19 pick, but if they really want a PG to get inside the lane to utilize Horford and Marvin more, then Teague provides the insurance in case the Hawks can't pull the trigger on Sessions or Felton. It doesn't make me like the pick anymore, but I now understand their thinking.
Felton, although inconsistent and erratic, does have the ability to get inside the lane and get other people shots. If you think about it, the only guy on the Bobcats who could create his own shot was Gerald Wallace, and he's hurt a lot of the time. Therefore, it's no reason Felton was inconsistent, he was having to try and create points out of almost nothing. Both Larry Brown and Michael Jordan started to like Felton after they got rid of Richardson and acquired Diaw and Bell, two guys who know how to get offense off of a penetrating PG.
And wouldn't it be fitting that the Hawks, who passed on Paul and Deron, would acquire the other PG from that draft!
they should run with augustine i think he's a good player
I agree free agency starts tonight! we do need a penetrating guard to move the defense around becuz it felt like we had 2 shooting guards out there if we get sessions i will be happy
Okay, so at least the Hawks are gonna go into the season with a PG running the team, instead of the three SG rotation that would've destroyed the Hawks chances at getting back to the playoffs, AND with Crawford on board as the sixth man, it'll take some of the work load off of Joe because Crawford will be able to come in and give him solid rest on the bench.
Now, I believe the next most important signing is to bring back Marvin, even if it's at the expense of losing both Zaza and Flip.
I love the resigning of Bibby. I'm probably his biggest fan, so I might be somewhat biased but honestly without him, the Hawks don't make the playoffs these past 2 years and in the 2nd round this past season. I think he'll serve as a solid mentor to Teague. Now with him on board, I like the quartet of guards we have with Bibby, JJ, Crawford and Teague. and if we lose Flip, it'll be ok bc we added Crawford. I really think we need to get another big man other than resigning Zaza. 1st, I say either sign Marvin to the 1yr tender or do a sign and trade for a big man. Or do that with Childress' contract. We need to look into some guys like Theo Ratliff, Chris Wilcox, Leon Powe, Juwan Howard, Brian Skinner, or Jamal Magloire. SOmeone who has some toughness and Sund needs to get David Andersen over here as well. And if we lose Marvin, please get Matt Barnes!!!!!
~ Teague's mentor will be Jamal Crawford, not Mike Bibby. Teague is a shoot first PG, or as I like to call him, a shooting guard.
~ Seriously, isn't a shoot first PG almost an oxymoron?
~ Horford's backup will either be Zaza or David Andersen.
~ I'd like the Hawks to see if they can get Hakim Warrick. What do you think his price tag will be? I'd say some where around the $3M/season range. Is that too much? What if we don't bring back Marvin?
~ Speaking of Marvin, what are the chances the Hawks resign Joe Johnson if they extend Marvin Williams this summer? I say little to none, which is another reason why Sund got Jamal Crawford.
~ I am proud of the Hawks for not letting the summer come to them like they did last year with the Joshes!
well since ATL just traded David Andersen for cash and a 2nd roound pick, and they need some bigs other than Al Horford , Josh Smith, Zaza and Randolph Morris, ATL should seriously look into getting Ben Wallace? we need more toughness and defense in the post, he has won a ring and could provide additional veteran leadership along with Bibby and JJ and he could teach the young bigs a few things. I would not be opposed to the signing at all. Hopefully Sund will look into it. what you guys think? also I read ATL has interest in Ike Diogu, i wouldn't mind having him on the team if we couldn't get Ben
i think their set their loaded right now.
Calhoun walks away with 873 wins and three national championships, the most recent coming in 2011. The reports were followed by a long string of his former players, like Rudy Gay of the Memphis Grizzlies and Charlie Villanueva of the Detroit Pistons, praising him and voicing their shock over this mildly-surprising announcement.