Atlanta Hawks Trade Rumors: Playing it Cool


The NBA trade deadline is Thursday, February 23 at 3 p.m. Eastern Time. It might be approaching rapidly but there's been hardly a squawk out of the Hawks front office. The team recently made headlines when they traded long time Hawk Kyle Korver to the Cleveland Cavaliers in early January. Since then, the team has gone 12-8 and seems content with its roster as it stands. There are some rumors floating around about ways to improve the team. 

Earlier this month there were talks of the Hawks shopping four-time All-Star Paul Millsap. He has the option to opt out of his contract this summer, which he most likely will exercise, and the Hawks don't want to risk losing him for nothing, like they did last summer with Al Horford. Plenty of teams were calling but ultimately the Hawks decided to take Paul off the table. It appears nearly impossible that they move him now. 

P.J. Tucker

Micheal Scotto of Basketball Insiders claims the Hawks are one of several teams kicking the tires on acquiring the Suns forward P.J. Tucker. This makes plenty of sense as forward Thabo Sefolosha has missed nine straight games with a groin injury and has no clear timeline for return. Then again, every team in the league could find a use for a versatile defender like P.J. Tucker. The Suns are asking for a first-round pick from potential suitors but they'll most likely have to settle for a second rounder. Tucker is an unrestricted free agent this summer and any team that trades for him risks losing him. 

Tiago Splitter

One piece the Hawks are actively looking to move is injured center Tiago Splitter. He's been out all season with a calf injury and there's been no word on whether he's able to return. Teams might find his expiring contract attractive as its completely covered by insurance this season but would still count toward reaching the tax floor for some teams. Other Hawks with expiring contracts are also supposedly being discussed in trades. That includes Sefolosha, Humphries, Scott, Muscala, and Hardaway Jr, but it seems unlikely Muscala and Hardaway specifically are moved. 

So far, the Hawks remain split down the middle on whether or not they'll make a move. Head Coach Mike Budenholzer has said that he's looking to improve the team but would be happy finishing this season with the roster as it's assembled now. The AJC's Chris Vivlamore has reported the Hawks are very active on the phones right now, but Atlanta has always been one of the quieter front offices since Budenholzer has taken over. Unless a very specific trade is leaked, it's unlikely anything concrete is in the works. 

The team does have a bevy of draft picks at their disposal that plenty of teams would find attractive. They own their own first round picks through 2022, along with a lottery protected first rounder from Minnesota in 2018 and a Top-10 protected first rounder in 2019 from Cleveland. They also own a handful of their own second round picks and protected second round picks from other teams. The Hawks could use a combination of picks and expiring contracts to solidify their bench for a long run in the playoffs. 

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