The Atlanta Hawks are in a different position this season from past years, as they definitely fit the category of sellers at the trade deadline in 2018. With the deadline quickly approaching, here are 20 possible trades to excite Atlanta fans about the upcoming frenzy.
As a general rule of thumb, most of these proposals involve the veterans the Hawks have on one-year deals (Marco Belinelli, Ersan Ilyasova, Dewayne Dedmon, Luke Babbitt), but there are a few surprises in the mix.
1. Marco Belinelli to Oklahoma City for the Thunder 2018 second-round pick (via Chicago)
This trade is pretty straightforward and works well for both sides. The Thunder are able to upgrade their bench significantly in a win-now move and the Hawks gain an asset in Chicago’s second round pick, which is expected to be in the 31-40 pick range. Belinelli is in the final year of his contract.
Note: Another deviation to this trade could be Marco Belinelli to Oklahoma City for Alex Abrines or Terrance Ferguson.
In this scenario, OKC would want to hold on to the more valuable Bulls second round pick and send the Hawks the rookie Ferguson, who only has 30 NBA games under his belt but has shown some tools on both ends of the floor, or Abrines, who is in his second NBA season and has shown an ability to be a threat from deep but struggles defensively.
2. Marco Belinelli and Luke Babbitt to Denver for Trey Lyles and Malik Beasley
This is a bigger trade but it certainly would help the playoff-pushing Denver Nuggets. Denver picks up some huge help from beyond the arc in both Belinelli and Babbitt, a part of Denver’s game that hasn’t been good this season. In exchange, the Hawks receive two young assets in Beasley and Lyles, both of whom have drawn Atlanta’s interest in the past (albeit under a different general manager).
Beasley is a native of Atlanta and is shooting 29 percent from three in his sophomore season and is averaging 3.4 points in 11 minutes of action per game. Lyles is playing well in his third season, shooting 42 percent from 3, pulling down 5 rebounds per game and averaging 10.5 points per game in 20 minutes per night.
3. Marco Belinelli and Luke Babbitt to Milwaukee for D.J. Wilson and Rashad Vaughn.
Once again it is the duo of Marco Belinelli and Luke Babbitt going to the Bucks, who could really use some help from beyond the arc as they push for the playoffs in win-now mode. The Hawks get a lottery ticket prospect in D.J. Wilson, who was the Bucks first round pick in 2017 and has not seen the NBA floor much this season. Wilson averaged 11 points per game for Michigan last season and showed some touch from three-point range, shooting 37 percent. Vaughn is in his third NBA season with the Bucks and is shooting 36 percent from three and is putting up 3.5 points per game in 10 minutes of action this season.
Note: The Bucks could possibly send a second round pick to the Hawks to help entice Atlanta, since Vaughn’s value as an NBA player is somewhat suspect. The Bucks can offer protected second-round picks from Dallas in 2018 (selections 31-55 protected), Denver in 2019 (selections 31-55 protected) or from Washington in 2020 (selections 31-55 protected). The Bucks also own their second round picks from 2020 on that can be used in trade as well.
4. Ersan Ilyasova to Boston for Semi Ojeleye and Aron Baynes
One of the more valuable veterans for the Hawks is Ersan Ilyasova, who is having a good year for the Hawks, as he’s shooting 40 percent from three and putting up 11 points per game in addition to pulling down almost 6 rebounds per game averaging 26 minutes a night.
The return for Atlanta would be helpful as well, as Semi Ojeleye is a wild card rookie out of SMU whose stats don’t look great but also only averages 13 minutes per game. Aron Baynes is a sixth-year pro who has been a capable backup for the Celtics averaging six points in 18 minutes per game.
Note: An alternative trade could involve one of Boston’s many second round picks instead of Ojeleye.
5. Dewayne Dedmon, Marco Belinelli and Atlanta’s 2018 first-round pick (via Houston) to Milwaukee for Jabari Parker, Thon Maker and Jason Terry
This is a big one. Dewayne Dedmon has been nothing short of outstanding for the Hawks in 2018 as he’s averaging career highs in nearly every category. Dedmon is averaging 10.5 points per game while shooting 38 percent from beyond the arc and is a legit seven-footer. Dedmon is also averaging eight rebounds per game and is putting up these gaudy numbers in just 24 minutes per game. Jabari Parker has had the worst luck with injuries over the last two seasons and after playing in only 51 games during the 2016-17 season has not yet played at all in 2018. Parker is averaging 15.8 points over his three year career and is shooting a modest 34 percent from three in his career but his upside continues to be great. He fits in with the Hawks nicely and is on the last season of his rookie deal but hits restricted free agency this summer.
Thon Maker is in his second NBA season at 20 years old and is shooting 33 percent from three while averaging 4.5 points per game in 18 minutes of action. This is a move the Bucks make if they’re looking to contend right now and the Hawks make this move for the chance of Maker becoming a solid NBA player but also with the intentions to buyout Jason Terry should he waive his no-trade clause. Terry is included to even out the contracts but will likely have no intention of playing one second for the Hawks ever again.
6. Dewayne Dedmon, Marco Belinelli and Hawks 2018 first-round pick (via Houston) to Cleveland for Tristan Thompson and the Cavs 2018 first-round pick (via Boston from Brooklyn)
Cleveland has been an enigma in 2018 so far as the team’s defensive effort has been non-existent. Dewayne Dedmon offers the Cavs a breath of fresh air with his great ability to move his feet well and go vertical at the rim. Compared to Thompson, Dedmon is the much better offensive player after expanding his game out to beyond the three-point line which will allow the Cavs to slot Kevin Love back into his natural spot at power forward. Belinelli offers the Cavs even more scoring from three point land and can create for himself and occasionally for others around him.
The Hawks would have to take on Tristan Thompson and the two remaining years on his contract but would gain the Brooklyn first round pick in the 2018 draft in the process. This would give the Hawks possibly two top-ten picks in the upcoming draft and Thompson, who isn’t useless but doesn’t offer much offensive versatility and is certainly a liability on his contract.
7. Ersan Ilyasova to Oklahoma City for Kyle Singler, Terrance Ferguson and OKC’s 2018 second-round pick (via Chicago)
Ersan Ilyasova could be used just about anywhere but the Thunder are in desperate need of bigs other than Carmelo Anthony that can catch and shoot from anywhere on the court. Ersan Ilyasova also offers the ability to play the 5 when matched up against undersized centers, an alignment that would stretch the floor even more for Oklahoma City.
The Hawks would get Terrance Ferguson, who seems like a legit NBA prospect, Kyle Singler, who is mainly just salary filler and has two more years left on his contract after this season and the second round pick via Chicago. The second rounder sent to OKC by the Bulls is largely expected to be in the 31-40 pick range which is exactly what Atlanta is looking for.
8. Ersan Ilyasova and Luke Babbitt to Charlotte for Malik Monk, Frank Kaminsky and Charlotte’s 2020 second round pick
Charlotte is teetering on the decision of whether to sell at the deadline or buy and go for a playoff push. Should they decide to go for it, this trade would bolster their three-point shooting immediately as both Ilyasova and Babbitt are among the best established three-point shooters in the league at their respective positions.
It would cost Charlotte a young asset in Malik Monk and give the Hawks a very raw prospect who can shoot and is signed to a long term deal but will take time to develop. Kaminsky is mostly included for salary filler but is also a useful big man in a back up role as he is averaging 11 points in 23 minutes per game this season. The Hawks also add another second rounder down the road that could become useful in another trade.
9. Miles Plumlee and Hawks 2018 first-round pick (via Houston) to Dallas for Josh McRoberts
Miles Plumlee was essentially the salary filler in the Dwight Howard trade to Charlotte and is signed for two more seasons after 2018. McRoberts is still working his way back from injury and has played a grand total of 3 minutes this season and looks to be more of a sunk cost for the rest of this season. His contract coming back is attractive because it allows the Hawks to dump Plumlee’s 3 year deal and gain McRoberts expiring contract.
The Mavericks are compensated well for taking on Plumlee’s contract with another first round pick to aid in their rebuilding efforts. Plumlee can also still be a serviceable backup for Dallas.
10. Dewayne Dedmon, Malcolm Delaney and Terrence Ross to Washington, Marcin Gortat and Chris McCullough to Orlando in exchange for Mario Hezonja, Tim Frazier, Khem Birch and the Wizards 2018 first-round pick.
This is a big one to unpack. The Wizards are desperately searching for help off their bench and this trade supplies help big time. The Wizards would land Terrence Ross, Dewayne Dedmon, who is having an outstanding year, and Malcolm Delaney, who is from Baltimore and is a capable play maker and shooter off the bench.
Orlando is able to move on from Ross who was never a good fit and this also allows them to move his $10.5M dollar contract for next season. The Magic also send out another $4M in salary between Hezonja and Birch to the Hawks as salary filler in this trade. Gortat has expressed desire to play for the Magic next season to finish his contract and career so this trade would make that possible for him and gives the Magic a better option over Bismack Biyombo. The Magic also receive Chris McCullough who looks to be a promising young prospect in his third NBA season.
For sending away their best center and backup point guard the Hawks are compensated with Washington’s 2018 first round pick and it allows the Hawks to give Hezonja a second chance in a different system. Frazier is mostly salary filler for the Hawks on an expiring contract and Khem Birch is a 25 year old rookie center who is having a decent season despite only playing 56 minutes to this point in his career.
11. Marco Belinelli and Luke Babbitt to Miami for Tyler Johnson and Justise Winslow.
The Heat have been rumored to be seeking help at shooting guard after losing Dion Waiters for the rest of the season and Marco Belinelli profiles perfectly for Miami. Belinelli can enter nearly any offense and have immediate impact shooting the ball and that is exactly what the Heat need. Luke Babbitt also gets a reunion with Miami where he thrived last season and already knows the offense.
The Hawks would get back guard Tyler Johnson, who is having a decent season shooting 36 percent from three and has an effective field goal percentage of 51 percent. Johnson would help Atlanta off the bench in the near future but is largely a negative asset due to his massive contract for the next two seasons. For the Hawks taking on Johnson’s contract, the Heat also send Winslow as a young asset for the Hawks to develop. Belinelli and Babbitt give Miami some much needed three-point shooting this season.
12. Ersan Ilyasova to Minnesota for Cole Aldrich and Minnesota’s 2020 first round pick
This one helps Atlanta in multiple ways, almost ensuring the first round pick Minnesota owes to Atlanta will convey in 2018 (top 14 protected) and giving Atlanta another first rounder to look forward to in 2020 (although most likely protected in a similar way). It is clear Minnesota is in win-now mode and trading for Ilyasova would bolster their shooting in the front court big time. The Hawks take back Cole Aldrich’s expiring salary and would give the big man playing time he hasn’t seen for the Timberwolves.
13. Marco Belinelli, Ersan Ilyasova and Isaiah Taylor to San Antonio for Danny Green and Dejounte Murray
Another big trade possibility between two clubs with tons of connections. The Spurs and Hawks have teamed up in the past on a trade that sent Tiago Splitter to Atlanta. In this trade, San Antonio picks up a familiar face in Marco Belinelli to aid in the Spurs scoring woes, Ersan Ilyasova, who fits very well into Atlanta’s San Antonio style system already, and Isaiah Taylor, who offers speed and playmaking as a third point guard.
The Hawks would take on Danny Green’s expiring contract (he has a player option that he’ll certainly decline), and Dejounte Murray, who would make a good backup to Dennis Schroder after Malcolm Delaney’s contract ends this offseason. This seems like a good deal for both sides as the Spurs are near the top of the Western Conference standings and could use some shooting at every position to help bolster their push for contention.
Note: Instead of Isaiah Taylor the Spurs may prefer a more experienced backup guard like Delaney. Delaney’s contract is slightly more expensive and would require the Hawks to either take on Brandon Paul’s contract or send cash considerations.
14. Marco Belinelli and Ersan Ilyasova to the Los Angeles Lakers for Corey Brewer and Larry Nance Jr.
This is an interesting trade that mostly hinges on the Lakers freeing up money for this coming summer’s free agent class. The Hawks do this deal to pick up Nance who could be a dynamite 1-2 punch next to John Collins for years to come. Nance is averaging nine points per game, is shooting 60 percent from the field, along with pulling down seven rebounds a game. Brewer’s expiring contract is included as salary filler to make the deal work and this allows the Lakers to make a push for Paul George or LeBron James in the summer.
15. Malcolm Delaney and Luke Babbitt to Washington for Tim Frazier and the Wizards 2022 second round pick
Delaney would get to play closer to his hometown for the remainder of the season and the Wizards pick up some much needed bench help and three point shooting. The Hawks do this deal as a service to Delaney and to get rid of $2M in salary and get a second rounder in the distant future.
16. Mike Muscala to Memphis for JaMychal Green
This is a minor deal that helps Memphis alleviate some cap space and helps Atlanta get better in the rebounding department while not losing the three point threat from a big man. Green is averaging 7 rebounds per game this season while Muscala is averaging just 3.7.
17. Luke Babbitt and Hawks 2020 second round pick to Chicago for David Nwaba
Nwaba is a legitimate 3-and-D point guard prospect, but the tough thing for the Bulls is the amount of point guards they already have on their roster. Babbitt offers them some much needed three-point shooting from a position of need at small forward and Atlanta gets an opportunity to develop Nwaba as a backup point guard.
18. Luke Babbitt to Philadelphia for Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot
Luke Babbitt is shooting 43 percent from three-point range in 2018 and can really help a 76ers team in need of catch-and-shoot forwards as they make their playoff push. Luwawu-Cabarrot is only 22 years old and is an intriguing prospect who can defend very well but has trouble shooting from long range, and the trade would be a worthwhile gamble to see if the young Frenchman could develop in the Budenholzer system.
19. Miles Plumlee and Hawks 2018 second round pick to Indiana for Al Jefferson
This deal is a bad contract swap where Atlanta takes on Jefferson and his $10M contract that runs through 2018-19 in exchange for Indiana taking on Plumlee and his $12.5M contract that runs through 2019-20 along with compensation in the form of Atlanta’s second round pick in 2018 which is expected to be in the 31-45 pick range.
20. Kent Bazemore and Luke Babbitt to Sacramento for Vince Carter, Justin Jackson and Georgios Papagiannis
Although I say this trade is improbable it’s not impossible. Sacramento is in need of defense and shooting, both of which Kent Bazemore can do pretty well. Sacramento is also well under the salary cap so this matchup works well from a financial perspective. Sacramento also gets the expiring contract of Luke Babbitt, who is a capable catch and shoot threat from three for rookie point guard DeAaron Fox to utilize, something Sacramento has been lacking this season. Bazemore is also a viable option from deep as he is shooting 38 percent this season and 36 percent for his career.
The Hawks receive Vince Carter, who would most likely seek a buyout or another trade, Justin Jackson, who is a rookie 3 and D prospect, and Georgios Papagiannis in his second season out of Greece. Justin Jackson was the first round pick of the Trail Blazers in the 2017 draft but was traded to Sacramento on draft night for Zach Collins. Jackson is having a difficult season from 3 but has great form and will surely improve with more opportunities. Georgios Papagiannis is averaging 2.2 points per game in just 8 minutes per game but has shown an ability to pass well as a center and is only 20 years old.
The biggest reason Atlanta would do this trade is to free up the cap space in coming seasons and it makes sense for Sacramento to get some stability on the defensive end of the floor with Bazemore.
There you have it, 20 trade ideas to satisfy any trade appetites you may have about the upcoming trade deadline. Remember this list is meant to be realistic which most of the time is not glamorous. In general trades are unpredictable but that is what makes the deadline so exciting is the uncertainty.
Now that we are all ready for trade season make sure to comment down below your idea for a trade and stay tuned for trade mania at Peachtree Hoops to ensue over the next two weeks.