Jamal Crawford's search for a contract extension has taken a rather unexpected turn. Reports surfaced Friday night that Crawford, who is in the last year of his contract, will seek a trade from the Hawks if his extension demands are not met. While there were no quotes directly from Crawford in any of the sources it appears that Crawford would rather play out his contract somewhere else if the Hawks have no intention of extending him.
Crawford came to the Hawks last year in a trade for Speedy Claxton and Acie Law. He made the playoffs for the first time in his career and appeared to embrace the role of six man so much so that he won the NBA's Sixth Man of the Year Award. Now it appears that long term security could be more important than winning to him and his Hawks tenure could end after only one season.
This is all really discouraging for me although I feel a little foolish for not anticipating something like this happening. The writing is basically on the wall for Crawford. The Hawks drafted a hopeful replacement for Jamal in Jordan Crawford. The Joe Johnson extension and the need to extend Al Horford will leave the Hawks with very little wiggle room in dealing with Jamal. It's sad because the Hawks have been intent on keeping the core together in hopes that any improvement will come from within. Now they may be forced to reshuffle that core that they were so intent on protecting.
I don't want to speculate any further on this until we get some comments from Jamal himself but we will be watching and keep you updated throughout the weekend. In the meantime here are links to the various reports:
Chris Broussard of ESPN The Magazine