2015/16 Record: 48-34 (2nd Round Exit)
Off Season Analysis:
Last off-season the Hawks made the right decision to go back to the Pac-Man logo full time and then followed it up with the unveiling of some of the most horrendous uniforms to ever grace an NBA floor. The 2016 off-season did not fail in reaching the same heights of confusion. After being swept out of the second round by the eventual champs, Atlanta began the summer looking to rebuild or at the very least; retool.
It was the right call. The current core had reached its summit 12 months ago with a 60 win season and it was time to switch the style up. In a series of moves I still don’t quite understand, they did just that.
Perhaps the only way to understand what was to come would be to look at Mike Budenholzer and the danger of his two hats. GM Bud got to work early in June, trading impending free agent Jeff Teague to the Pacers for the number 12 pick. The decision had finally been made for Coach Bud, Dennis Schroder had the keys to the car. That pick was then used to draft young DeMarre Carroll Taurean Prince, a guy I really like even if it was a slight reach. DeAndre Bembry (who is destined for Childress comparisons on looks alone) joins the team with their own first round pick at 21 and Pick 44 becomes draft & stash French prospect Cordinier.
Okay so GM Bud had decided, the Hawks are rebuilding right?
July 1st hit and Coach Bud seemed to take the reins, moving to lock up Kent Bazemore (4 Years/$70 mil). Then comes Dwight. Howard. 3 Years. $70.5 million. Wait. What?! Let’s check in with Harry The Hawk. They weren’t done. More beautiful confusing craziness followed. The Hawks still wanted Al Horford. But he didn’t want to play with Dwight. Not to mention, in order to re-sign Horford the Hawks would have to move Paul Milsap. So then come the Milsap trade rumours, followed by Horford choosing Boston and the final reports that Atlanta & Horford were just $6mil in total apart. All this in the space of just a few hours and with that, Atlanta’s off-season (except a minimum flier on Jarrett Jack) was over.
So, rebuild for the future or retool for the present? Or a mixture of both that keeps both sides happy but leaves your roster in this weird state of flux that is really neither? You brought Dwight home 3 or 4 years too late to replace your healthier/younger/better 5 man and no doubt pissed off your all star PF in the process. Who by the way, will probably leave next off season and what will be left? A mix of over the hill veterans to go with wasted young talent.
An off-season best described as a giant drinking bender to bring in July. It all started very civilized with red wine, got crazy when the Jagermeister came out at the stroke of midnight and ended with a shot of glowing green Absinthe. The result? Waking up the next day very confused with red, black and neon vomit all down your front. Or is that just your new Dwight Howard Hawks jersey?
2016/17 Prediction: 40-42
League Pass Meter: 6/10.
This team won’t be bad but I just can’t see them being close to last year. Tune in early to watch Dwight try play Hawks basketball. Come for the potential on court lols, stay for the potential off court fighting.
|*Salary Guarantees 10th Jan 2017|
Salary Cap Situation:
2016/17 Salaries: $97,294,075 (Over The Cap Team)
2017/18 Salaries: $46,899,873
Max Room: $55mil
Min Room: $25mil
2017 2nd (BKN), 2017 2nd (MIA Protected 31-40)
2018 1st (MIN Protected 1-14)
2019 2nd (WAS).
2017 2nd (SAS Protected 31-55)
Will Schroder produce the type of numbers his per36 stats promise (19/4/8)?
Will Paul Milsap be traded?
Can the Hawks keep home court for Round 1 of the playoffs?
What can Dwight average on this team?
Will Mike Scott finish the season on the team or in jail?