As a lifelong Atlanta sports fan, there is ZERO surprise that the Hawks got screwed. All day, Twitter was utilizing tweets as prayers to the basketball Gods for the Hawks to win the Zion sweepstakes. All day, there was a genuine optimism within the Hawks fan base that we would finally get our due. All day, Hawks fans once again placed their fan faith in a system that seems to be built to crush the souls of Atlanta fans. So again I say, there was ZERO surprise when the Hawks, who had the 5th highest percentage to land the #1 overall pick, were gifted the second-worst possible pick in the lottery at 8th overall. The only way the night could have gone worse is if the Mavs had landed in the top four. Thankfully, they didn’t, which at least leaves Atlanta with two top ten picks. Travis Schlenk has proven to be a wizard at evaluating talent early in his career as a general manager, and there have been notable players selected in both spots throughout the years — here are a few:
Robert Parish (1976)
Drafted in 1976 by the Boston Celtics, Robert Parish went on to have a storied career. In a staggering 21 seasons, Parrish was a 4× NBA champion (1981, 1984, 1986, 1997), 9× NBA All-Star (1981–1987, 1990, 1991), All-NBA Second Team (1982), All-NBA Third Team (1989), NBA’s 50th Anniversary All-Time Team, and had his no. 00 retired by Boston. Atlanta will be thrilled to draft someone of his caliber at 8.
Andre Miller (1999)
Starting with the Cleveland Cavaliers in 1999, Andre Miller had a respectable career. He made the All-Rookie team in his first year. He also ranks 10th all-time on the assists list.
Paul Pierce (1998)
Boston took the Truth in 1998 and he balled out for 19 NBA seasons. His accolades include 1X NBA champion, 1X Finals MVP, 10X All-Star, 1X All-NBA Second Team, 3X All-NBA Third Team, and his no. 34 is retired by both the Boston Celtics and Kansas Jayhawks. If the second coming of the Truth falls to Atlanta at 10, you’ll hear Ice Cube in the back saying, “Today was a good day.” Although Pierce’s basketball hot takes are mind-numbingly horrendous.
Horace Grant (1987)
Horace Grant was taken by the Chicago Bulls back in 1988, and he went on to good things. Grant was a 4X NBA champion, 4X All-NBA Defensive Second Team, and played in the league for 17 years. The Hawks will be stoked to get a defender such as Horace at 10, especially considering how poorly they were defensively last season.
Jason Terry (1999)
Hawks’ fans will remember this guy, as we took him back in 1999. Terry retired after last season and is a 1X NBA champion, 1X NCAA champion, and NBA Sixth Man of the Year winner. I believe the Hawks would be happy to get another player as talented as Jason Terry.
Joe Johnson (2001)
Hawks’ fans will remember this name as well, even though he was drafted by Boston back in 2001. The former Hawk has gone on to be a 7X All-Star during his NBA Career. A player of Joe Johnson’s talent falling to 10 would be a big win for the Hawks if they can snatch him up.