It was quite an eventful year for the Atlanta Hawks and we are going to take a look back on 2014 and countdown the Top 10 stories surrounding the team. A list like this is subjective and there were plenty of worthy options. Still there can only be 10, so here is a look at a group of stories that didn't quite make the cut but were otherwise noteworthy.
Zaza Pachulia makes his Philips Arena return
Zaza Pachulia has a special place in the hearts of many Atlanta Hawks fans and he made his return to Philips Arena last March as a member of the Milwaukee Bucks. Our own Jane Hammond caught up with Zaza that day to talk about his return and his time spent with the Hawks.
Dennis Schröder helps Germany qualify for 2015 Eurobasket
Dennis Schröder has turned the corner for the Atlanta Hawks this season and that success can be traced back to his work over the summer. Schroöder put up a solid summer league performance and then headed overseas to play for Team Germany as they attempted to qualify for the 2015 Eurobasket Tournament.
Schröder played well in the tournament and helped lead Germany to a 4-2 record in Group C and a qualifying berth in the 2015 Eurobasket. Individually Schröder averaged 15.3 points and 5.3 assists while shooting 57 percent from the field. He told us during the Hawks Media Day festivities that he hoped to carry over the confidence that gained at the Eurobasket Qualifier into this season with the Hawks.
So far so good for Schröder who has supplanted Shelvin Mack as the back up point guard behind Jeff Teague and is currently averaging 8.6 points per game off the bench while shooting 46 percent from the floor.
Quin Snyder leaves Hawks to become head coach of the Utah Jazz
One of the first things Mike Budenholzer did after being named as head coach of the Atlanta Hawks was assemble a staff of excellent assistant coaches. One of the problems with having a top notch staff is that when NBA jobs open other teams naturally come calling. That was the case with assistant coach Quin Snyder who left the team after just one season to become the head coach of the Utah Jazz.
Snyder was credited by many a Hawks player with his work in player development. He was especially close to Dennis Schröder and was instrumental in the improvements made by DeMarre Carroll. There was some initial fears that fellow Hawks assistant Darvin Ham would accompany Snyder to Utah but Ham ultimately chose to remain with the Hawks and was elevated to the team's lead assistant.
Sir Foster becomes a star at the NBA All-Star Game
After Atlanta's trip to London last season, the NBA noticed Hawks' organist Sir Foster and brought him to New Orleans for the All-Star Game. Foster's performance drew rave reviews and caused quite a Twitter stir. Peachtree Hoops' Jason Walker talked with Sir Foster about his All-Star Game experience.
Kyle Korver participates in Team USA training camp
Hawks shooting guard Kyle Korver was among 19 players that were invited to participate in training camp with Team USA. While Korver appeared to be a long shot initially, he worked his way into the discussion as training camp progressed. Of course, the NBA and Team USA were rocked after the devastating and tragic injury suffered by Paul George in the USA Basketball Showcase.
That led many to once again question Korver's and the NBA's involvement in USA Basketball. Korver's experience was valuable however, and his teammate Paul Millsap was invited to try out for the team in wake of George's injury and the departure of Kevin Durant.
However, Millsap was among the first cuts and while Korver survived to the end, he wasn't a part of the final roster chosen to compete in the World Cup.
Team USA went on to capture Gold at the World Cup and Korver said he was honored for the opportunity to participate in training camp with USA Basketball.
Hawks re-sign Shelvin Mack, Mike Scott and Elton Brand
Shelvin Mack and Mike Scott had breakout seasons of sorts for the Atlanta Hawks in 2014 and were rewarded with brand new guaranteed contracts. Both went to training camp at the start of the 2014 season with unguaranteed deals and on more than one occasion did we question whether or not they would even make the roster.
Not only did they make the roster, they excelled. Mack wrestled the back up point guard job away from Dennis Schröder while Scott emerged as team's biggest offensive weapon off the bench.
Mack agreed to a three-year, $7.3 million deal with the Hawks while Scott garnered a three-year deal approximately $10 million. Both are great examples of Atlanta's consistent focus on player development.
Elton Brand was brought in prior to the 2014 season to serve as veteran depth and to be a positive influence in the locker room. By March he found himself as the team's only healthy center option and was forced into playing heavy minutes for a stretch. Its not surprising that Atlanta was among several teams chasing him this summer and would eventually land him on another one-year deal.
Hawks sign Thabo Sefolosha and Kent Bazemore
Atlanta entered the offseason looking to add depth and size at the wing position. They did so by adding Thabo Sefolosha and Kent Bazemore to the mix.
While neither have been spectacular, they have fit in well and provided the Hawks exactly what they were looking for. Sefolosha agreed to a three-year deal worth $12 million and has appeared in 29 games while averaging 5.0 points and 4.3 rebounds. He has given Mike Budenholzer another defensive option to deploy behind DeMarre Carroll. His value goes beyond his stats and he too has been a great influence on Atlanta's locker room. Bazemore got off to a bit of a slow start but has worked his way into the rotation at the backup shooting guard position of late.
Hawks draft Adreian Payne, Walter Tavares and Lamar Patterson
The Atlanta Hawks spent the 15th pick in the 2014 draft on Michigan State forward Adreian Payne. Payne hasn't made an impact with the Hawks appearing in just one game this season due to Atlanta's crowded front court. He has spent the majority of his time playing in the D-League with the Fort Wayne Mad Ants and lately the Austin Spurs where he continues to make progress. Barring injury, Payne's impact with the Hawks may be minimal this season but he should look no further than the progress made by second-year guard Dennis Schröder as inspiration and could figure into Atlanta's plans as soon as next season.
The Hawks picked up center Walter Tavares with the 43rd pick in the draft and later traded for the rights to shooting guard Lamar Patterson. After participating in the Las Vegas Summer League, both headed overseas to continue their development. Tavares is playing in the Spanish ACB for Gran Canaria while Patterson is playing in Turkey for Tofas Bursa.
Hawks acquire Antawn Jamison from the Los Angeles Clippers at the trade deadline
I forgot that this actually happened until I was researching for this story.