|Hawks general manager Travis Schlenk (left) and Hawks principal owner Tony Ressler share a laugh before the news conference to officially introduce Schlenk at Philips Arena on Friday, June 2, 2017. HYOSUB SHIN / HSHIN@AJC.COM|
As we’ve seen already, the Atlanta Hawks are going through many changes from the direction of the roster to the renovations in Philips Arena. There’s a bright future in store with new General Manager Travis Schlenk leading the way, True Believers… Patience will indeed be a virtue! Between revamping Philips Arena and rebuilding a Hawks roster to contend for the future, the process is beginning to take place. However, as we look ahead to the following off-season, there’s a few elite NBA stars that will be available in Free Agency and possible trade scenarios around the league as well.
At the conclusion of the 2017-18 NBA Season, LeBron James, Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook, Paul George, and Demarcus “Boogie” Cousins are some of the names headlining next year’s Free Agency Period and could possibly land in another NBA city. As for the Hawks, if the young roster can make an impact next season maybe not in the win column as much, but display potential to become a contender in the Eastern Conference in the near future, the Hawks could be in consideration for landing one of the top Free Agents in next year’s class.
As I mentioned above, with a revamped arena, you have another pitch to present to a major star in the future if the Hawks rebuild continues to succeed and one or two stars could help Atlanta reach the pinnacle of success in the NBA. If you could land a Kevin Durant or Demarcus Cousins, you’ve provided the Hawks fans with an exciting player that could sell out games in the future and aim to finally become a Free Agent Destination for years to come. Schlenk was a part of the process in turning the Golden State Warriors from a dismal franchise to a NBA Powerhouse.
Earlier today, reports emerged that Kyrie Irving requested a trade from the Cleveland Cavaliers due to his concerns with the Front Office and wanting a larger role on a NBA Franchise. Irving wants to become the Franchise player for years to come! Could you imagine if the Hawks somehow landed Kyrie Irving? If Irving and Schroder could co-exist, True Believers would be excited! With Schroder, Prince, and Collins leading the way, attracting a super star would help the Hawks take another step as a Eastern Conference contender!
Also, the Hawks could make an attempt at a dominant big in the Free Agency period next season like Pelicans center DeMarcus Cousins to compliment rookie John Collins. Although the Hawks are in a rebuilding process, it’s not certain what Schlenk will do with the current players on the roster. With the addition of Dewayne Dedmon from the San Antonio Spurs, the Hawks are hoping that the veteran center provides a solid impact in Mike Budenholzer’s system.
Moving along, the Hawks have multiple approaches that could benefit the roster in Free Agency and the ultimate goal is to attract key super stars and sign players at respectable contracts. The rebuilding process isn’t an easy task, look at the Golden State Warriors and Boston Celtics, although the opportunities to land major Free Agents are opening up now, their process was a mixture of acquiring solid talent in the NBA Draft and removing declining players as well. If you can attract the right pieces, your team could immediately become a destination for years to come!
In conclusion, every decision for the Atlanta Hawks front office is crucial in their process of building a contender in the Eastern Conference. For a team that only has one Conference Finals appearance in their franchise history, you want to make key moves to bring the excitement of Hawks basketball back to the city of Atlanta. Although we’ve made the playoffs 10 years in a row, there was time for change! Rebuilding is never a bad idea, as long as the front office can make the necessary moves, a minor setback is due for a major comeback! Hawks fans, remain patient, the roster will once again reach the pinnacle of success around the NBA!