The Hawks will sign Earl Barron to a training camp deal to replace the retiring Jason Richardson, a source tells Marc J. Spears of Yahoo Sports (Twitter link). The nine-year veteran finished last season with the Suns. He’s the 20th player with whom the Hawks have either a signed contract or a verbal agreement, putting them at the preseason roster limit, though they’ll ostensibly release Richardson soon.
The 34-year-old Barron hadn’t drawn much interest in free agency this summer, as our rumors page for him indicates, but he’s shown a knack for making his way onto NBA rosters despite limited playing time. Last season’s 16 games with the Suns were the most Barron had played in an NBA season since 2010/11, when he totaled 21 appearances split among three teams. The center’s best season was 2007/08, when he appeared in 46 contests, and 15 of them as a member of the starting lineup, for the Heat.
Atlanta offers him a decent chance at a regular season roster spot, since the team only has 13 fully guaranteed contracts. Mike Muscala has half of his two-year veteran’s minimum salary guaranteed, ostensibly giving him the inside track on spot No. 14. The four players aside from Barron who are in the mix for the 15th spot, assuming the Hawks carry that many guys on opening night, have a combined one year of NBA experience, so Barron is by far the best option if coach/executive Mike Budenholzer prefers a veteran.
Do you think Barron could help the Hawks this season? Leave a comment to weigh in.