Championship contending windows in the NBA typically close a lot sooner than anyone thinks. Take the Indiana Pacers, for example. Entering last season, Indiana was considered an elite team perhaps still a year or two away from hitting its prime as a true title contender. The Pacers started out hot, became the early season championship favorites, bought into their own hype, made a couple of short-sighted trades and eventually fizzled. In the following months, Roy Hibbert went from All-Star center to meme extraordinaire,
What a difference a year makes. Just last summer, Dennis Schroder was the toast of the NBA Summer League and was heralded as the future cornerstone of the Atlanta Hawks. His long arms, quick hands and athletic prowess had veterans gushing that the Hawks had found the second coming of Rajon Rondo. One training camp later and, in theory, we should be in the same spot from where we started last season. Schroder just turned 21 in October – mere months older
When the Atlanta Hawks hired Danny Ferry as general manager in the summer of 2012, one of the first things he impressed upon the organization was the importance of patience. The Hawks promptly traded Joe Johnson for replacement-level flotsam to keep their payroll flexible and patiently waited for Josh Smith’s contract to expire to determine where their newfound wealth would be allocated. With the exceptions of signing Paul Millsap to a two-year, $19 million deal and re-signing Jeff Teague for four years
Before Bruce Levenson’s infamous email and Danny Ferry’s infamous scouting recital, the Atlanta Hawks were actually one of the quietest teams in the NBA this offseason. In the face of one of the most active transaction cycles in NBA history, Atlanta’s limited action in free agency was by design. General sentiment within the organization was – and remains – that the team will take an important leap forward as long as they remain healthy. After all, before center Al Horford tore his right pectoral –
It might sound ridiculous to try to compare Aron Baynes, an undrafted reserve with four career starts, to Bill Laimbeer, a four-time All Star and NBA champion. However, the two have more in common than you would expect. Before Laimbeer became the ringleader for the Pistons’ Bad Boys and a namesake for a Super Nintendo videogame, he was an afterthought. Sandwiched in the draft between two players who never appeared in the NBA, Laimbeer – the 65th overall pick in 1979 – was forced to
The Chris Bosh-to-Houston rumor makes it seem as if it’s a forgone conclusion. But what if LeBron James calls up Bosh to a pitch the possibility of a reunion in Cleveland in the next 24 hours?
This may come as a surprise, but the Atlanta Hawks are actually closer to becoming championship contenders than you might think. This summer, Atlanta has a realistic opportunity to present LeBron James and Carmelo Anthony with the most attractive free agent pitch of any team in the league, if Danny Ferry maneuvers contracts aggressively and appropriately. It’s certainly an ambitious idea, but it’s far from ridiculous. First and most obviously, the Hawks are situated in the Eastern Conference. This gives them a succinct
With just one more week to go in the NBA season, it’s time for our final round of “Name That Big Man!”