As the roster stands right now, the Hawks look primed to make another run at the playoffs with a very similar squad to the one they had a year ago. We still don’t know what will happen with John Collins. The latest report from Shams Charania suggested the Hawks and Collins were not close to a contract agreement. Still, Atlanta can match any offer he signs with another team, which is why I ultimately believe he will be staying with the Hawks long-term. Those aren’t the only rumors flowing around the team, though, and one in particular could be an interesting development. John Hollinger of The Athletic believes “Another possible name for the Wolves: Danilo Gallinari.”
Now, on the surface, a deal between the Hawks and the Wolves seems very forced and doesn’t make much sense for Atlanta. Schlenk would only deal Gallo in an attempt to shed some salary to bring in a star-caliber player. Well, the Wolves can’t really facilitate something like that. They don’t have the cap space to absorb Gallo’s contract, and they don’t — at least in my opinion — have anyone that should really interest the Hawks unless they were willing to part ways with Karl-Anthony Towns, which I doubt they would. However, if a third team were to get involved, perhaps something could be worked out. Gallo’s contract details are listed below.
Danilo Gallinari has some non-guaranteed money (previously reported) at the end of his three-year deal with the Hawks:
Final season is $5M guaranteed, becoming fully guaranteed if he's not waived on/before 6/29/22.
— Keith Smith (@KeithSmithNBA) November 25, 2020
That’s a very moveable contract. All rebuilding teams should be interested in acquiring Gallinari, especially if they can get some young assets in the deal. Gallo would provide a nice veteran presence for a young team, and after a year, the team could part ways with him by buying him out for just $5 million. I also wouldn’t be surprised if there were some competitive teams interested in bringing in Gallinari. After all, he was a critical piece to the Hawks playoff run, helping them get over the hump.
The Hawks are perfectly positioned to make a run for an NBA Championship, and Gallo could very much be apart of that. Still, Schlenk is the type of general manager who is never satisfied with the composition of his roster and is always looking to improve it. This could be a situation where he works a three-team trade to shed Gallo’s salary and then bring in another player who he feels would give the Hawks a better chance at making a run at a title. Atlanta also spent their first-round pick on Jalen Johnson, who could start stealing some of Gallinari’s minutes by the end of the season. I highly doubt the Hawks are scurrying to find a new home for Gallo, but I could see him being moved this offseason or sometime soon if the right offer comes across the table.