JANUARY 31: The Hawks have officially announced in a press release that they’ll take control of a D-League team in Erie for the next two seasons before relocating to College Park for the 2019/20 campaign.
JANUARY 23: The Hawks are in the final stages of an agreement to operate the Erie BayHawks in the 2017/18 and 2018/19 seasons, according to Chris Vivlamore of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. This development comes on the heels of a report from NBA.com’s Scott Howard-Cooper during last week’s D-League Showcase in Ontario.
The BayHawks will serve as a placeholder for Atlanta, whose permanent D-League team in College Park, Georgia is expected to begin operations in 2019/20. The Hawks will supplant the Magic as Erie’s NBA affiliate, as Orlando has a deal in place to move its D-League affiliate to Lakeland, Florida.
The Hawks, who currently use the D-League’s flexible assignment system, haven’t been tied to any one particular NBADL team this season, assigning players to the Salt Lake City Stars, Long Island Nets, and Delaware 87ers.
With the Hawks and Timberwolves expected to gain control of current D-League teams while the Grizzlies and Magic move their operations elsewhere, the NBADL should feature at least 24 teams for the 2017/18 season.