The NBA's free agency period is into its fourth week and there has been virtually nothing in regards to restricted free agents Mike Scott and Shelvin Mack. Being a restricted free agent is tough for players and both Scott and Mack need look no further than the situation that Jeff Teague found himself in last summer as proof.
With most of the big names now off the board, teams will now turn their attentions to rounding out there rosters. Additionally, there are several teams out there that still have a healthy amount of cap space and that could be good news for guys like Mack and especially Scott.
CBSSports.com's Matt Moore recently ranked Scott as the ninth best free agent currently available and cited his growing offensive game as justification.
Scott's a lesser name but hung up in restricted free agency like Greg Monroe and Eric Bledsoe. Scott's an impact player, though. He averaged 18.6 points and 6.9 rebounds last season per 36 minutes last season, and was in the 85th percentile in offensive production per possession according to Synergy Sports.
He's a long defender who can attack the rim out of the pick and roll, and is improving as a spot-up shooter. He's worth a front-loaded deal from a rebuilding team like Milwaukee or Utah to try and force Atlanta not to match.
Scott is in fact long but I question the inclusion of the word "defender" in Moore's description. He is however a capable scorer who fit nicely into Atlanta's spread the floor system.
Atlanta is one of those teams that has cap space but Danny Ferry has been very protective of his team's flexibility. It remains to be seen whether he could be goaded into matching an offer that he had questions about. The Hawks also spent the 15th pick in the 2014 Draft on another power forward in Adreian Payne who has more upside and is a more well-rounded player although he likely lacks Scott's offensive polish.
Still the Hawks have maintained that they like Scott and he is a prime example of their player development model. He was a second-round pick in 2012 who found a way to stick on the roster. He came to camp last season with an unguaranteed deal and eventually worked his way into being a key rotational piece.
There is room in the frontcourt for both Scott and Payne. Scott in some alignments can play the small forward position while Payne could also see some time at the center position. Ferry has been about adding assets and Scott could be just that if he can be had on a short affordable deal especially if he continues to add to his game. He could be moved down the line should Payne prove ready.
Still Scott must continue to play the waiting game but a light at the end of the tunnel should be coming into view.