Ten Way-Too-Early Low Cost Free Agent Targets for the Hawks

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The Hawks are at a bit of a crossroads. 2021-2022 was a very disappointing season following an Eastern Conference Finals berth, and it looks like Atlanta may need another superstar to pair with Trae Young to get back. That would mean trading some picks and young talent, along with spending a decent amount of money. Luckily, the Hawks are open to the idea:

If the Hawks do make a big splash, they’ll need to get some high-quality defenders that can shoot. I really emphasize defensive effort, something the Hawks sorely lacked. Those are the guys I’ll be focusing on today.

 

F Cody Martin — Charlotte Hornets (Restricted)

If I had to pick one guy on this list, it might be Cody Martin. I could see the Hornets matching whatever offer Martin gets, but he plays with a lot of energy and gives a ton of effort on defense. Throw in the fact that he’s only 26 and shot 38% from deep last year, and the Hawks may have to overpay him a bit.

 

F Joe Ingles — Portland Trail Blazers (Unrestricted)

Although Ingles is coming off of a brutal injury, he’s still one of the best defenders in the league when he’s healthy and can knock down open threes. Maybe the Hawks can snag him on a discount.

 

F Chris Boucher — Toronto Raptors (Unrestricted)

Boucher hasn’t really carved out a big role in Toronto, but he’s a good shot blocker with the athleticism to switch and can also knock down a few open threes. He could be a solid backup next to Onyeka Okongwu for the right price, depending on Jalen Johnson‘s future in Atlanta.

 

F Bruce Brown — Brooklyn Nets (Unrestricted)

I think Bruce Brown would be an incredible fit for the Hawks. He can guard multiple positions even though he’s a bit undersized, and he knocked down 40% of his threes this season. Atlanta needs someone who is going to bring some fire on the defensive end.

 

G Donte DiVencenzo — Sacramento Kings (Restricted)

DiVencenzo is a very energetic defender and microwave scorer — something the Hawks could use off the bench when they need an offensive spark. We saw the Kings not match Bogdan Bogdanovic, so who knows.

 

G Pat Connaughton — Milwaukee Bucks (Player Option)

You can rely on Connaughton to knock down some triples, and he gets after it on defense. If Kevin Huerter is moved in a trade, he would be an immediate upgrade. I doubt Connaughton opts out of a player option with a championship contender, and he won’t be cheap if he does.

 

G Hamidou Diallo — Detroit Pistons (Team Option)

Diallo is still pretty raw, but he still has the potential to turn into an NBA star if his jumper can improve. I wanted the Hawks to take a swing on him last year, but his athleticism and body could make him a defensive menace.

 

F Derrick Jones Jr. — Chicago Bulls (Unrestricted)

Another guy I wanted to take a crack at last free agency, Jones is a very good defender who can knock down some threes and provide some highlight reel dunks.

 

F Jalen McDaniels — Charlotte Hornets (Team Option)

I doubt the Hornets turn down the team option on a young player, but if they do, I love Jalen McDaniels for the Hawks. He’s the type of young 3-and-D player they need to come off the bench.

 

G Wesley Matthews — Milwaukee Bucks (Unrestricted)

Matthews isn’t the player he once was, but he’s still a very tough defender that can handle the ball and will give you a few threes off the bench.

 

Photographer: Melissa Tamez/Icon Sportswire

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