Breaking down the trade rumors swirling around the Hawks leading up to the 2023 NBA Draft

NBA: MAR 21 Raptors at Bulls

The NBA Draft is only a few days away, and the Hawks are embroiled in multiple trade rumors, according to Jake Fischer of Yahoo Sports. The Hawks are rumored to be talking to multiple teams, including the Mavericks, Pacers, and Raptors. Let’s take a look at each rumor and give a heat check on each one.

Rumor 1

Dallas Mavericks Get: John Collins or Clint Capela, Pick 15

Atlanta Hawks Get: Davis Bertans, Pick 10

Here’s what Fischer had to say about a potential Dallas-Atlanta deal:

In Atlanta, the Hawks will continue to explore trade scenarios for Collins. That has so far included preliminary talks with Dallas about swapping Collins and the No. 15 pick in the draft with the Mavericks for the No. 10 pick and Dāvis Bertāns. Those talks did not develop very far, sources said, and Dallas indicated it would be more willing to consider that deal if Hawks center Clint Capela was the returning player from Atlanta

I believe that these talks didn’t get very far. It would essentially just be a bad contract swap and likely not a very good one for the Hawks. Here’s how the contracts break down for each player:

  • John Collins: 2+1 (Player Option), $26.2 million AAV
  • Clint Capela: 2 Years, $21.4 million AAV
  • Davis Bertans: 2 Years (ETO), $16.5 million AAV, $5 million buyout for 2024-2025

This would clearly be a cost-cutting move for the Hawks, but not immediately. The early termination option for Bertans would not vest until next offseason. He could be a better fit for Quin Snyder’s scheme, but he has been abysmal since signing his five-year, $90 million deal. He is a decent shooter from outside, and moving up in the draft would be nice, but I wouldn’t be a huge fan of this trade. I think you can do better, but you can definitely do worse.


Rumor 2

Hawks could move Onyeka Okongwu, DeAndre Hunter, or Saddiq Bey

Unsurprisingly, the Hawks have got a lot of calls about Onyeka Okongwu, DeAndre Hunter, and Saddiq Bey. Both were high-profile draft picks, and Bey had a really good stretch with the Hawks after Atlanta gave up five second round picks to get him. Okongwu is due for an extension next offseason, and I talked about what that could look like here. DeAndre Hunter looks to be a decent role player, but the Hawks have to be listening to calls. Here’s what Fischer had to say:

The most inbound trade calls Atlanta has gotten, dating back to the trade deadline, have been focused on young center Onyeka Okongwu, sources said. Okongwu becomes extension eligible this summer after a decent emergence in Year 3. The same goes for Saddiq Bey, whom Atlanta sacrificed five second-round picks to acquire at the deadline and surely intends to retain long term. That has led opposing front offices to pinpoint Capela and De’Andre Hunter as logical trade candidates for the Hawks in addition to Collins. It is important to consider, though, how much Atlanta has valued Capela’s ideal pick-and-roll partnership as a lob threat for Young, not to mention his rim protection ability when he and the Hawks’ lead guard have to defend the opposition’s same action. Plus, Atlanta values Hunter’s two-way ability in a league that’s still placing heavy premium on wings.

I’m completely buying this rumor. I’d be willing to move any of these guys for the right price, but if you trade Collins and Capela, I would place an emphasis on keeping Bey and Okongwu. I think both guys can be quality pieces on cheaper deals, and if the Hawks can recoup some draft picks they lost in the Dejounte Murray trade, they could go big-game hunting in free agency. I like that vision, and I’m buying this rumor.

However, one deal I would not be in favor of is the rumored DeAndre Hunter for Chris Duarte swap from the 2023 trade deadline. Duarte was old when he was drafted; so he’s already 26, even though he was the 13th pick in the 2021 NBA Draft. Unless Duarte comes with substantial draft capital in return, this would be an awful trade. He was drafted as an NBA-ready sharpshooter, but he only averaged 19.5 minutes per game and shot 31.6% from three in 2023.


Rumor 3

Phoenix Suns are targeting John Collins

An interesting wrinkle, as the Suns may be looking to offload Chris Paul’s contract on a third team in exchange for John Collins. This would be difficult to accomplish, as the Suns have already sent a ton of picks to the Nets for Kevin Durant and Paul isn’t exactly a coveted asset for a team with that type of cap space. Here’s what Fischer had to say:

Two names to keep an eye on in Phoenix’s trade pursuits: Atlanta Hawks forward John Collins and Boston Celtics guard Malcolm Brogdon. The Suns acquiring either of those veterans might require a third team to accept Paul’s outgoing salary — such as the Houston Rockets with their $60 million of cap space and counting — but Brogdon and Collins are a pair of players Phoenix has registered interest in during trade conversations with Boston and Atlanta, respectively, that date back to the trade deadline, sources said.

I completely buy this rumor, but I couldn’t see it happening. I don’t know what the Suns would have to offer in return. Although, it’s hard to deny the Hawks are exploring every avenue when it comes to moving John Collins.


Rumor 4

Hawks are in on Pascal Siakam

This is the most exciting rumor of the bunch. Siakam is a very good player, and Atlanta would be fully committing to the Young-Murray pairing by adding him.

One player believed to be on the Hawks’ radar of potential trade targets is Raptors forward Pascal Siakam, sources said, and Toronto marks another team front offices are closely monitoring for trade activity. Similar to the team’s position leading up to the trade deadline, the Raptors are said to still be deliberating various pathways to proceed with their roster. One North Star remains clear for the Raptors: The franchise views Scottie Barnes as the future engine of this offense under new head coach Darko Rajaković, sources said.

Siakam makes a ton of sense for the Hawks. Siakam is a decent defender, good rebounder, and he isn’t a ball stopper under the rim. The Hawks have had issues with Collins and Capela stopping the ball, and Siakam would be a much more smooth fit for the scheme. He averaged over 24 points per game last season and even shot 32.4% from three, so he would definitely make the Hawks much more of a threat in the Eastern Conference. I don’t know what assets the Hawks would have to fork over, but it would be a lot to get a player of Siakam’s caliber.


Photographer: Melissa Tamez/Icon Sportswire

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