Grading Bleacher Report’s three trade hypotheticals for the Hawks

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I’ve made no bones about it — the Hawks need to get better this offseason, one way or another. They don’t have a top pick, and they don’t have a boatload of cap space to make things happen in free agency. They may have to look to the trade market, and Bleacher Report has a few ideas for Atlanta. Let’s talk about each one and give them a grade:

Trade 1:

Atlanta Hawks Receive: G/F Joe Harris, PG Patty Mills

Brooklyn Nets Receive: F/C John Collins

After years of a declining role and production, it’s finally time Collins leaves Atlanta.

Adding more shooting around Trae Young and Dejounte Murray should be a priority, and Harris has long been one of the best in the NBA. He knocked down 42.6 percent of his triples last year and hasn’t shot under 41.9 percent in any of the past six seasons.

Mills gives Atlanta a veteran point guard behind the two stars, someone to come in and help stabilize the second unit. Both Harris and Mills are on expiring deals, which opens up $26.6 million in cap space next summer when Murray will be due for a max contract.

Collins, 25, becomes a building block in Brooklyn, able to start at power forward or come off the bench at either post position.

I do understand the rationale here, but the juice just isn’t worth the squeeze here. If you’re going to salary dump John Collins, I just don’t think this is a great return. I think *someone* would be willing to fork over a pick or a young player in return for Collins, and by trading him for two expiring deals, you’re sort of robbing Peter to pay Paul.

Grade: C-

Trade 2:

Los Angeles Clippers Receive: F/C John Collins

Atlanta Hawks Receive: G Terance Mann, PF Marcus Morris Sr.

If the Clippers want to continue the Kawhi Leonard-Paul George experiment, they should look into ways of adding more quality and less quantity around them.

Collins, 25, needs a change of scenery and could thrive as a third or fourth option in Los Angeles. He’s a good enough three-point shooter to keep the floor spread and can play either power forward or center for stretches.

With Collins not living up to his contract in Atlanta, the Hawks can use Morris as the team’s starting power forward while Mann is a do-it-all guard off the bench.

If you’re moving John Collins, this is much more of what I had in mind. The Hawks need a little bit of edge on their roster, and Morris can provide that on a somewhat cheap deal. I like Terance Mann’s game, he’s an average defender, but he can give the Hawks some buckets off the bench. If you ARE going to move on from Collins, this is what you should be looking for in a return. I still don’t think you should look to offload him just yet.

Grade: B-

Trade 3:

Phoenix Suns Receive: C Clint Capela, SG Bogdan Bogdanović

Atlanta Hawks Receive: C Deandre Ayton, SG Landry Shamet

With Kevin Durant and Devin Booker, the Suns need to continue to add depth, rebounding, defense and shooting around their stars.

While Ayton has All-Star potential, his touches will be limited if he stays in Phoenix given the amount of offensive talent already on the roster.

Capela gives Phoenix a rim-running, glass-cleaning center who doesn’t need the ball in his hands to be effective. Bogdanović is the ideal sixth man for this group, able to score or facilitate for others depending on who’s on the floor.

Ayton can thrive in Atlanta, playing pick-and-roll off of Trae Young and Dejounte Murray all game long while expanding his overall game. Shamet gives this roster more shooting around the star guards as well.

I’m on record saying that I really don’t want DeAndre Ayton. His game is a lot of empty calories in Phoenix, 20 and 10 but not really impacting the game. He has shown some attitude issues before, and you have to ask, is it a Suns thing or an Ayton thing? Shamet’s contract isn’t guaranteed after this season, but Ayton is married to the max offer sheet he signed in Phoenix. I don’t think this would be the worst trade in the world, but I have some serious doubts that either team will get much better after this one.

Grade: C+

Photographer: Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire
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