It was reported last week by Marc Stein that the Hawks were a team to keep an eye out for in Ben Simmons trade talks, and those are continuing to pick up steam early this week. In a report from Shams Charania Monday morning, he says Atlanta is indeed involved in trade talks regarding Simmons, and that John Collins could potentially be the centerpiece in a deal.
In scanning the Hawks’ roster, it’s obvious John Collins — who signed a five-year, $125 million deal in restricted free agency last offseason — and Cam Reddish are among the players who could acquiesce a package for Simmons. It’s unclear whether the Hawks are ready to put such a proposal on the table after making a run to the Eastern Conference finals a season ago.
Charania continues by pointing out that Collins has become “increasingly frustrated over his role in Atlanta.” Collins’ numbers are eerily similar to the ones he put up last season, as he remains one of the most efficient players in the Association. The fifth-year power forward is averaging 17.5 points and 7.9 rebounds per game on 54.1% shooting from the field and 42.7% from behind the arc. Because of that, his frustrations are understandable.
Despite his tremendous efficiency, it’s clear the Hawks don’t view him as a go-to offensive option. Too many times, he disappears offensively, and a primary reason for that is because they never call any plays specifically for him. After signing a five-year extension with the Hawks last offseason, I don’t imagine this situation is unfixable, but it’s fair to wonder if there is a better fit for both sides, which could result in a blockbuster trade for Ben Simmons coming to fruition.