NBA Draft 2011 Trade Rumors: Are the Atlanta Hawks Going to Trade Josh Smith?

Joshua SextonSenior Analyst IIJune 23, 2011

ATLANTA, GA - MAY 12:  Josh Smith #5 of the Atlanta Hawks against the Chicago Bulls in Game Six of the Eastern Conference Semifinals in the 2011 NBA Playoffs at Phillips Arena on May 12, 2011 in Atlanta, Georgia.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

According to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports, the Atlanta Hawks are interested in trading Josh Smith to the Minnesota Timberwolves in exchange for the second overall pick in tonight's Draft.

Apparently, the Atlanta Hawks have an interest in obtaining Enes Kanter.

"Hawks GM Rick Sund has been hugely interested in Kanter throughout the pre-draft process, sources said, and has clearly been looking to find a deal for Smith. Under the salary cap, the Wolves could absorb the $13 million-plus owed him next season without sending back corresponding contracts."


According to the reports, the Timberwolves have not released any information concerning a potential deal with Atlanta. However, Atlanta says they will continue to talk to Minnesota leading up to the Draft.

The Hawks are trying to push Smith as a potential high-flying sidekick for Ricky Rubio, who announced he would be joining the Timberwolves next season.

The Hawks would get a player they could develop alongside Al Horford in the frontcourt. Also, playing on a team with a better record would allow Kanter to develop more gradually, instead of being forced to contribute right away.

Minnesota is also setting themselves up to have a potentially strong nucleus. They will have Kevin Love, Ricky Rubio and either the second overall pick, or any player/s they receive in exchange for the pick.

Maybe things aren't looking so bleak in Minnesota.