Game 54 Toronto Raptors vs Atlanta Hawks: The Hawks Did Not Trade Veterans Or Entertain Buyout, Now What?

The February 7 trade deadline passed at 3pm EST but the Hawks did not make any meaningful trade moves for the veterans as expected to turn them to 1st or 2nd round draft picks.

Per league source, the Hawks also have no plans to buyout any veterans (e.g. Jeremy Lin, Kent Bazemore, Dewayne Dedmon, Vince Carter) still on the roster. Usually, buyouts for veterans will help them to play for other teams if the current team will focus on giving playing time to develop young players.

It will be important to hear what GM Travis Schlenk will say to the media prior to the tonight’s game against the Raptors on why he did not make any trade moves for the veterans

In the minor trade moves, Atlanta Hawks traded Tyler Dorsey who is not in the regular rotation to Memphis Grizzlies for Shelvin Mack who will be waived. Daniel Hamilton was waived.

Making Sense of Not Trading Veterans for Draft Picks or Young Players

The main reason that the Hawks want to keep the veteran is if they’re not full tanking as expected to get Zion Williamson (next LeBron James) in the next NBA draft. Keeping veterans will enable the Hawks to win more games but at the same time reduces the chance to be the lottery/bottom teams with the worst records in order to get Top Draft Pick in the 2019 NBA Draft. Schlenk can build assets with draft picks by trading Bazemore/Lin/Dedmon but did not do it. Many will question him for not getting assets in the form of young players or the 1st and 2nd round of draft picks.

Could it be that Atlanta really want to make a playoff run with the help of the veterans? We should tune in to hear GM Schlenk’s explanation regarding the Hawks absence of major trades.

Possible Reasons Why The Hawks Did Not Trade Lin

The biggest question is why the Hawks might still keep Lin knowing he most likely will not resign with them in the off-season and they will not get any young players or 1st/2nd round draft picks. Some possible reasons

1. GM Schlenk values Lin to be worth a 1st round pick and won’t budge
Most likely no other NBA teams want to give it up first round picks, possibly due to Lin’s lower 3FG% after the 12/5 back injury

2. Continue mentoring Trae, Collins, Huerter
They like what JLin does in the stabilizer mode and continue to teach Trae, Huerter, Collins what it takes to close the season strong

3. Try to make the playoff in the weak Eastern Conference
The Hawks is sitting at the 12th spot in the Eastern Conference with 18-35 record. They are 8.5 games behind #8 Miami Heat (25-27) . There are 3 teams between them (Detroit, Washington, Orlando) and the last two could be tanking after trading away Markieff Morris and acquiring Markelle Fultz.
Vince Carter and Lin teaching Trae, Collins, Huerter about playoff intensity in their rookie years will benefit them tremendously to speed up their development.