Hawks have a great chance to change their image and more important to the GM and management their Playoff ceiling. Every great player and organization wants to commit to winning. In the past Hawks owners have wanted to win but not to pay luxury for this team as constructed.
But with the new CBA it isn't as lucrative for the Hawks to be a non-taxpaying team anymore, that might be the thing that prods them to spend into the tax.
Josh Smith at 6'8 is showing why he is the most irreplaceable Hawk right now, thus the Hawks dealing him now would be frowned on by players around the league and doom them in the future to only attaining bottomfeeding, money grubbing players.
NOT elite players who sacrifice money to win. Its a lose-lose situation.
Remember the Free Agency of 2010:
Perception can turn into harsh reality, and the Bulls' image as unfriendly to former stars could adversely affect the team's ability to land a premier free agent.
"I think the biggest question that you think about has to be loyalty," said Wade, a Richards grad who added he has been a Bulls fan for a long time. "I know one thing about Miami: It is a very loyal organization. I see what they do with their players when their players get done with the game of basketball … how loyal they are. I don't know about the Bulls."
Gar Forman had to come out and defend the Bulls organization but the truth is players look at these things. To kick Josh Smith to the curb after his legendary performance against Kevin Durant and gutsy anchorage of the Hawks against Lebron James is asinine.
Josh has called out the Hawks. He said its about winning. Read that again, he says its all about winning for him. Now, the hawks have 2 trade assets. Josh Smith and Al Horford.
For the Hawks to keep an injured Al Horford ($12M) over Josh Smith ($13M) can only be construed negatively by the elite players in this league.
- cheaper contract
- disloyalty to hometown kid
- shallowness in loyalty to All Star bids.
The Hawks are not likely to trade Josh now for they would lose more games as Horford was injured against the Pacers. While the length and type of injury is unprecedented this is not the first time Al Horford has been injured trying to score the basketball. This is just honesty, similar to Bosh he is awkward in his movements. But unlike Bosh he is smaller and less athletic 1 on 1 and when he tries to do beat his man with an athletic iso move he risks injury.
Building around a limited scorer who has injured himself repeatedly trying to score is not ideal. Again it is stupid. Horford and Joe Johnson and Jeff Teague maybe another injury prone big man to the mix there.
"It was the only time in my lifetime I've ever sat down with players alone and just sort of talked about stuff, and everyone back then was like, 'Josh is the key (to the team),' " Gearon said of Smith, a six-year veteran who is 24 but was just 21 entering the month those comments were made. "Even then, people were like, 'He's the key.' He does different things. The intensity rises for the whole team. It was interesting to hear that even back then.''
Gearon said he doesn't mean to take anything away from Hawks All-Star guard Joe Johnson, who had a game-high 27 points against Milwaukee and averaged a team-high 21.3 points during the regular season. And one presumes he also doesn't mean to take anything away from Atlanta's other All-Star from last February, center Al Horford, when Gearon says Smith "deserved to be on the All-Star team as much as anybody on our team.''
There's no disagreement from Horford.
"When Josh plays like that, we're at our best'' Horford said after Tuesday's game. "We're going to go as far (in the playoffs) as Josh Smith takes us.''
So Josh Smith leaves. Who fills the void of scapegoat? When the team loses or stagnates too much or gets blown out.
Who takes the blame for losses there? Who is the leader in this group?
Losing Josh Smith would easily bring a dark cloud over the Hawks.
In Contrary, something positive and smart for this organization. Keeping Josh over Horford would be great loyalty and help Hawks in the future as a "player's organization" and playoffs wise & cap wise its not bad to attain KG's expiring.
This trade nets the Hawks future Hall of Famer, 7 foot forward, Kevin Garnett on a giant expiring contract.
I haven't seen the luxury tax situation but it would be better for the Hawks ownership to test the lux tax & with the loyalty shown to Josh Smith this would pay dividends in free agency and draft workouts etc. For the future of this organization the Hawks need to work to get that rep. They cannot go with the low budget option in Horford.
By retaining Kirk Hinrich's contract, This offseason this becomes the Hawks cap situation.
Josh Smith + Joe Johnson (admitted albatross) + Jeff Teague + Zaza Pachulia=
40.63 million U.S. dollars
This is a very shrewd business move. The Hawks have shown that Al Horford is not much of a difference maker.
By being 18 million under the cap the Hawks can now:
A) offer Dwight Howard a Max Contract + a guy with Heart in Josh Smith + go to player status
B) Hawks can pursue 3 point marksman Ryan Anderson & hand the keys to Jeff Teague while Smith anchors the defense.
With $18mil in cap and loyalty They can make a massive run at players. They've also said they are willing to go into luxury for elite players ie Lebron. Dwight is in that class of impact players, at least defensively.
The future of this team is Jeff Teague's development. Throwing the ball to Horford + another center down low won't facilitate his style of play and like Josh and Iso Joe it will only repeat the cycle of hindering the development of a young dynamo in this case Jeff Teague.
With this trade (http://espn.go.com/nba/tradeMachine?tradeId=7njfzjt) the Atlanta Hawks solidify their reputation as a loyal organization that prides defense and heart and in the (very near) future players will surely look to here to not leverage silly owners for an exorbitant paycheck, but to win championships.