Atlanta Hawks Nearing Acquisition of Warriors' Jamal Crawford

Taylor SmithAnalyst IJune 24, 2009

DALLAS - JANUARY 28:  Jamal Crawford #6 of the Golden State Warriors during play against the Dallas Mavericks on January 28, 2008 at American Airlines Center in Dallas, Texas.  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 Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

The NBA's pre-draft wheeling and dealing is on a roll already.

The Atlanta Hawks are on the verge of completing a trade with the Golden State Warriors that would send point guards Acie Law IV and Speedy Claxton to Golden State in exchange for Jamal Crawford.

Crawford, acquired by the Warriors last season from the Knicks, is an outstanding scorer, averaging nearly 20 points per game last season.

The 6'5" Crawford is likely to play both back-up guard positions behind Joe Johnson and Mike Bibby for Atlanta, barring another move.

Crawford's contract situation was a concern for the Warriors, as Crawford can exercise a player option for the next two seasons that would cost about $9.3 million next season and just over $10 million in 2010-11.

Warriors Head Coach Don Nelson had issued somewhat of an ultimatum to Crawford after the season ended, declaring that if Crawford didn't opt-out of his contract, he would be traded.

This gives the Hawks a very solid scoring punch off the bench, and Crawford figures to see lots of time at the point guard position.

For the Warriors, this is a big-time salary dump. Claxton is owed about $5.3 million next season, and Law is just over $2 million, with a team option for the 2010-11 season.

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A lottery pick out of Texas A&M a couple of years ago, Law hasn't developed as quickly as the Hawks would have liked. Perhaps Golden State is hoping a change of scenery will be able to bring out the best in him.

It remains to be seen if this trade takes the Warriors out of the running for a point guard in tomorrow's draft. They had been rumored to be interested in several of them, including Brandon Jennings.

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