Could Howard join the Hawks in 2013?
From the exodus of Joe Johnson and Marvin Williams and acquisitions of Devin Harris, Kyle Korver and Lou Williams, among others, to the recent additions of Kenny Atkinson and Bob Weiss to the coaching staff.
At present, there are only 2 spots open on the Hawks 15-man roster—although Ivan Johnson is a restricted free agent with a qualifying offer from Atlanta. As far as who will be filling those positions, that is still up in the air. Currently, there are some rumblings, if only a few.
James Anderson, formerly of the San Antonio Spurs, has been invited to the Hawks veteran camp, according to a tweet from his former teammate, Danny Green. Atlanta Journal Constitution blogger, Michael Cunningham, writes that Anderson is probably joining the Hawks on a summer contract, at which point he would have to earn his way on to the roster.
Whispers are also circulating that there may be interest between the Atlanta Hawks and free agent power forward, Anthony Tolliver. The Hawks could use some additional size, and Tolliver's shooting touch could add even more depth to the 3-point options this upcoming season. The Minnesota Timberwolves, Indiana Pacers and Washington Wizards have also expressed interest in Tolliver, so this should be something to keep an eye on in the next few days.
Going forward, the widespread belief is that the Hawks have put themselves in a position, with a large amount of cap room in 2013, to make a run at some big name free agents.
Multiple sportswriters (Zach Lowe for SI, Sekou Smith for NBA, Alex Kennedy for HoopsWorld, etc.) are projecting Atlanta to make a run on Dwight Howard at the onset of next summer. ESPN's John Hollinger, as far back as July, went so far as to hypothesize a scenario wherein the Hawks would go after Howard, Chris Paul and retain Josh Smith.
Considering that the Hawks currently only have 5 players projected to be under contract at the onset of the 2013 offseason, of whom only account for a combined salary of $15.5 million, Atlanta will be big players in the free agent market.
The prospect of the Hawks becoming an NBA superpower has this writer thinking he should put money aside for season tickets.