The lion’s share of attention surrounding the Atlanta Hawks after the 2020 NBA Draft was focused on No. 6 overall pick Onyeka Okongwu for obvious reasons. Okongwu is an impressive prospect that figures to be a part of Atlanta’s core for a long time and, given the substantial investment of a mid-lottery selection, the former USC big man will be prominently discussed for years to come. However, No. 50 overall pick Skylar Mays is also an interesting find for the Hawks in the second round, and the team announced on Tuesday that Mays has signed a Two-Way contract with Atlanta.
Former William & Mary big man Nathan Knight is also joining the Hawks on a Two-Way contract, though Mays slotting into a Two-Way was not a foregone conclusion. It is not a surprise to see a late second round pick agreeing to this contract structure but, at the same time, it also could be quite helpful for the Hawks, particularly after free agent investments in players like Danilo Gallinari, Rajon Rondo and Kris Dunn. As such, Atlanta is facing a potential roster crunch, and the structure of Two-Way deals in 2020-21 also allows Mays to be with the NBA club more often, while also earning a higher guaranteed salary than Two-Way deals included in previous years.
Under the CBA for the upcoming season, players on Two-Way deals receive $449,155 in salary, though it should be noted that Two-Way deals do not count against the salary cap. From there, both Mays and Knight can be active with Atlanta for up to 50 games, though the Hawks will be able to have Two-Way players active for a maximum of 80 total games between the two slots.
It will be interesting to see how the Hawks develop Mays on a roster that is more crowded than when he was selected less than one week ago. However, Atlanta will be able to keep a close eye on his progress, and Mays is an intriguing prospect with appeal on both ends of the floor.