Following a disappointing 4-1 first-round playoff loss to the Heat, the Hawks could undergo significant roster overhaul, predicts Chris Kirshner of The Athletic. In a new piece, Kirshner assesses who among Atlanta’s current personnel may not return for the 2022/23 NBA season.
“Yes, I think we should have tried to get better rather than bring back what we had,” team owner Tony Ressler acknowledged about the Hawks’ 2021 offseason team building. “That won’t happen again. It was a mistake, in my opinion at least.”
Among the priciest players, Kirshner considers forwards John Collins and De’Andre Hunter, plus unrestricted free agents Danilo Gallinari, Gorgui Dieng, and Lou Williams, unlikely to return to the Hawks next year.
There’s more out of the Southeast Division:
- Wizards GM Tommy Sheppard had plenty of thoughts regarding the lottery-bound team’s preparation for the 2022 NBA draft, including the NBA Combine in Chicago this month, writes Jackson Filyo of Wizards.com. Washington will have the No. 10 pick this year. “The combine is a continuation of the work we have already done,” Sheppard said. “We have been evaluating some of these players since they were 14 or 15 years old… At the combine, you want to see their character, you want to see how they react, how they respond to coaching. You want to see how they respond to different environments.”
- Now that the Hornets know they will be drafting near the end of the 2022 lottery with the No. 13 pick, Roderick Boone of the Charlotte Observer takes stock of four candidates worth considering: Duke center Mark Williams, Wisconsin small forward Johnny Davis, Memphis center Jalen Duren, and LSU forward Tari Eason. Boone adds that the Hornets will also have the No. 15 pick in the draft as a result of their sign-and-trade deal that landed Devonte’ Graham with the Pelicans. Boone notes that one or both of those selections could be bundled into a trade for a veteran.
- The Magic have landed the No. 1 pick in the NBA draft for the first time since 2004, and the fourth time in the franchise’s history. Orlando has an opportunity to add one of the top young prospects entering the draft this season, per Khobi Price of the Orlando Sentinel. “I’m so happy for our fans tonight,” president of basketball operations Jeff Weltman said. “They really stuck with us and nights like this help when you can show the fruits of why you go through these phases and cycles. Hopefully, they’re really excited by this. We’re going to add another good young player to our talent base.”