Mar 3, 2012; Atlanta, GA, USA; Atlanta Hawks forward Josh Smith (5) look to pass against the Oklahoma City Thunder during the second half at Philips Arena. The Hawks defeated the Thunder 97-90. Mandatory Credit: Josh D. Weiss-US PRESSWIRE
According to a report by the AJC's Michael Cunningham, Josh Smith still has not softened his preseason stance and has reportedly let the team know that he would like to be traded before the March 15 deadline. Cunningham cites anonymous sources with knowledge of Smith's thinking.
The person said one of Smith's complaints is that he believes the Hawks didn't do enough to promote him for selection to the All-Star team, which he thinks contributed to lesser players being voted to the team by Eastern Conference coaches. Smith, an Atlanta native who has played his entire seven-year career with the Hawks, also would like to play for a franchise he believes is more committed to winning a championship.
At the end of last season there were rumors that Smith wanted to be moved because he had grown tired of what he deemed unfair criticism. Those has had all but disappeared this season but if this report is true, Smith is still looking to move on and start fresh somewhere else.
According to Cunningham's report, Atlanta is taking calls on Smith but there are no indications that they are prepared to move him although if he has requested a move that could move things along more quickly.
Smith enters the final year of his current deal next season and the Hawks would presumably have a decision to make on whether to try to resign him or trade him for fear that he could sign with another club and leave them with nothing. Now it looks like those questions could get answered much quicker than we first anticipated.