While the action on the basketball court this time of season is can't miss, it usually takes a backseat to all of the circulating trade rumors, which blow up Twitter feeds faster than Russell Westbrook gets from one end of the court to the other.
As the March 15 trade deadline approaches, the rumors will only multiply. In the following slides you will find any trade rumors from the last 10 days linked to the Atlanta Hawks. And don't forget to check this slideshow periodically, seeing as it will be updated with any trade buzz concerning the Hawks.
According to Michael Cunningham of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Josh Smith has informed Atlanta Hawks' management he wishes to be traded.
While Smith is not quite the same caliber of player as LeBron James and Dwight Howard, the Hawks may eventually go through similar issues the Cleveland Cavaliers did with James and the Orlando Magic are going through currently with Howard.
Smith's current contract expires after next season, before the high flying forward becomes an unrestricted free agent. It wouldn't be nearly as devastating for the Hawks to lose Smith with nothing in return the same way it was for Cleveland when LeBron fled for Miami. But it's still an issue I am sure the team's front office has thought about.
Here is what Smith had to say about the rumor:
“I really don’t pay any attention to it,” he said. “I just go out there and play the way I play and not worry about anything else. I know this is a business. Whatever happens, happens in the long run. But I know as long as I’m with the Hawks, I have to put my best foot forward.”
The report said the Golden State Warriors are one team interested in Smith. It was also noted the Hawks have not given any indication they plan to part ways with Smith.
There was a rumor circulating last week linking Atlanta Hawks small forward Marvin Williams to the Cleveland Cavaliers. According to a report, the Hawks would be looking to acquire Cleveland backup point guard Ramon Sessions in return for Williams.
Apparently, the Hawks looking to deal Williams is nothing new. In the same report, it was mentioned the Hawks have been looking to deal Williams at the trade deadline each of the last three seasons.
Of all the rumored trades involving members of the Atlanta Hawks, this one seems like the most logical. Both teams would benefit from their new additions. The Cavaliers would be getting an upgrade at the small forward position over Omri Casspi, in addition to adding a veteran player to go along with a core of youngsters, led by rookies Kyrie Irving and Tristan Thompson.
Sessions, who is currently averaging 10 points and five assists serving as Irving’s backup in Cleveland, would provide the Hawks with a consistent backup behind starter Jeff Teague. Current backup Kirk Hinrich is currently having his worst season as a professional.
One thing that would potentially hold up the deal sending Williams to Cleveland is the fact the Cavs would have to take on the $16 million left on Williams’ contract over the next two seasons.
According to ESPN’s Marc Stein, the Los Angeles Lakers may be interested in Atlanta Hawks backup point guard Kirk Hinrich. The Lakers are still looking to use their trade exception from the deal which sent Lamar Odom to the Dallas Mavericks last December. The Lakers have $8.9 million to use in their trade exception and could add Hinrich for $8.1 million, according to the report.
However, there have been other reports circulating that the Lakers, thanks in large part to the new collective bargaining agreement, may be hesitant to add any additional payroll, which is why they may have dealt Odom to Dallas for nothing in return and rejected a trade this past week for Minnesota Timberwolves forward Michael Beasley.
The Lakers’ point guard and outside shooting woes have been a thorn in the team’s side dating back to its championship years in 2009 and 2010. The Lakers are currently a bottom five team in point guard production and are tied for 28th in the league for three-point percentage. So there would be nothing to lose by adding Hinrich. However, is there tons of confidence he would be the savior at the position the team has been looking for?
Hinrich is playing subpar basketball at the moment, averaging career lows in points, assists and field goal percentage. The Lakers are also starting to finally (somewhat) come together on the offensive end of the court. By adding Hinrich, the team would potentially set back the marginal progress it has already made.
All stats in this slide courtesy of 82games.com.
According to the New York Daily News, the Boston Celtics may be interested in breaking up their “Big Three” trio of Paul Pierce, Ray Allen and Kevin Garnett to gain some young stars to build around for the future. One of those young studs mentions was Atlanta Hawks forward Josh Smith.
More specifically, a trade sending Smith to the Celtics in exchange for Garnett was mentioned in the report.
The Hawks would likely be able to swindle a couple of more players from Boston in the deal, but Smith is younger, healthier, and at this point, a better overall player than Garnett.
Garnett, whose contract expires at the end of the season, would be better suited being traded to a team for the remainder of the season that is “one piece away” from seriously contending for a championship (like the Memphis Grizzlies, assuming Zach Randolph doesn’t return when expected).
While I am sure the Celtics wouldn’t mind acquiring Smith for the aging Garnett, I don’t see why in a million years the Hawks would do this rumored deal. If the Hawks really are looking to trade Smith, which is highly doubtful, they would be able to get much better return for him somewhere else.
It’s not as though the wheels are completely falling off the bus down in Atlanta. The Hawks are currently in the sixth seed in the Eastern Conference and only two games out of the three seed.
According to Rusty Simmons of the San Francisco Chronicle, the Golden State Warriors have talked to many teams as the March 15 trade deadline approaches, including the Atlanta Hawks.
The report went on to say the Warriors feel they could probably snag Joe Johnson from the Atlanta Hawks in exchange for Monta Ellis but feel Johnson is ultimately not as good and more expensive than Ellis.
I couldn't agree more with the above statement. Ellis is definitely a better offensive player than Johnson, both are ultimately liabilities on the defensive end and the Warriors would be taking a hit in the pocket book. Unless the Warriors are able to get other pieces to go along with Johnson, this rumor seems as far-fetched as any I've seen.