Hawks Notes: Bogdanovic, Rondo, Collins, Gallinari

It has been a rough few years in Atlanta, where the Hawks have failed to crack the 30-win mark since the 2016/17 season. However, given the flurry of roster moves the team made to upgrade its roster in recent weeks, Bogdan Bogdanovic is confident that the Hawks are prepared to put those days of losing behind them.

“I know they went through the rebuilding, but as far as I know right now, this is the reason why they brought me here,” Bogdanovic said, per Sarah K. Spencer of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “We are all about winning right now. That’s why they’re all in this year, and they brought other players next to me that are really experienced in the league. We know why we are here, you know? It’s time to win, really.”

Of all the players signed by Atlanta this offseason, Bogdanovic received the most significant long-term commitment, a four-year, $72MM deal that includes a trade kicker and a fourth-year player option. Despite being aggressive on the terms of Bogdanovic’s offer sheet, the Hawks weren’t certain the Kings wouldn’t match, writes Sam Amick of The Athletic.

As Amick explains, before the Hawks signed Bogdanovic to that offer sheet, they explored some possible sign-and-trade scenarios with the Kings that would’ve allowed them to acquire the RFA swingman outright. Sources tell Amick that Atlanta offered Oklahoma City’s lottery-protected 2022 first-round pick as part of a potential sign-and-trade, but was rebuffed by Sacramento.

That pick isn’t especially valuable – the Thunder will probably be a lottery team in ’22, in which case it would turn into two second-round picks instead of a first – but it’s still surprising that the Kings would turn down the opportunity to acquire an asset if they were prepared to let Bogdanovic walk. It’s possible that Atlanta’s full offer didn’t appeal to Sacramento for another reason, but for now, there’s no clarity on why the Kings didn’t work to complete a sign-and-trade with the Hawks, says Amick.

Here’s more on the Hawks:

  • New Hawks point guard Rajon Rondo – who will be the oldest player on the roster – said that he’s looking to forward to “mentoring these young guys,” as Paul Newberry of The Associated Press writes. “I’m not coming here to be the starter. I’m not coming here to play 30 minutes a night. The biggest role for me is to lead,” said Rondo, who also spoke about the possibility of transitioning into a coaching or front office role with an NBA team once his playing days are over.
  • Hawks head coach Lloyd Pierce believes the team “hit a home run” in free agency and doesn’t feel as if Atlanta skipped any steps in its rebuild, writes Chris Kirschner of The Athletic.
  • Within that same story, Kirschner relays John Collins‘ comments when asked if he’ll insist on a maximum-salary contract in extension talks: “I’m not really too sure, but I just feel like with my relationship with the organization, I feel like we have nothing but positive things or nothing but positive areas to grow with, so I’m just leaning on that. I’m hoping we can come to an agreement before the season starts.”
  • Although Danilo Gallinari will be earning more than $20MM per year on his new deal with the Hawks, the team plans for him to come off the bench behind Collins. Gallinari confirmed as much when he spoke to reporters this week and indicated that he has no problem with that role, as Sarah K. Spencer writes for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
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