The Atlanta Hawks are trying to find ways to improve their roster going into the 2024 offseason. The Hawks failed to make the NBA Playoffs after losing their first Play-In game to the Chicago Bulls. To get things right for 2025, Atlanta must draft a highly-touted center, make a crucial trade, and address the offensive fit of Dejounte Murray.

The Hawks have a roster with high potential. Yet, they have not been able to get past the first round of the playoffs since 2021. That year, Atlanta advanced to the Eastern Conference Finals to face Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Milwaukee Bucks. Atlanta lost the series 4-2, but their run was a positive sign for the future.

One year later, the Hawks made the playoffs again but exited in the first round after a 4-1 series loss to the Miami Heat. Shortly after, the organization decided to make a blockbuster trade for former All-Star Dejounte Murray. Murray's enticing two-way play was supposed to take the Hawks to the next level. He has amassed respectable production during his tenure, but it has not resulted in a great deal of winning.

Atlanta exited the postseason early again in 2023 after a 4-2 fall to the Boston Celtics. The team ran things back with some minor changes for their 2024 run, but the results did not improve. Nevertheless, the Hawks roster has a bright outlook, and it starts with the 2024 NBA Draft.

Hawks must tweak center position with their No. 1 overall pick, trade Clint Capela 

Jaxson Hayes (Texas) greets NBA commissioner Adam Silver after being selected as the number eighth overall pick to the Atlanta Hawks
Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

When the Hawks entered the 2024 NBA Draft lottery, analysts believed they would have the 10th pick. However, Atlanta struck gold with the No. 1 overall selection. Talent for the draft is considered weaker compared to previous years. Yet, one prospect has made his one to the top of most scouts' boards.

French center Alexandre Sarr is an elite big man with high defensive upside and is projected to be the first pick. Sarr's shot-blocking and all-around defensive ability could change the dynamic of the Hawks' attack. At 7'1″ with a 7'4″ wingspan, Sarr can cover ground like few can. Offensively, he can play on the perimeter or the post. The 19-year averaged 9.6 points, 4.5 rebounds, and 1.5 blocks per game with the NBL's Perth Wildcats.

Atlanta should go all-in on Sarr's potential and make them their new starting center. Of course, this means the team would likely trade Clint Capela. Capela has been very serviceable for Atlanta as a double-double machine, but the Hawks need more of a bonafide rim protector, and Sarr can provide that.

A change in the center position is not the only tweak Atlanta needs to make for an imported postseason run.

Changing the backcourt dynamic is key

 Atlanta Hawks guard Dejounte Murray (5) and Atlanta Hawks guard Trae Young (11) celebrate
Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

Trae Young and Dejounte Murray are Atlanta's stars. They form one of the best backcourts in the NBA. However, their tenure has yet to result in a deep playoff run. The two guards were swarmed with trade rumors late in the 2023-24 season as Atlanta's playoff chances dwindled. But what if there was a way to keep them both and maximize the team's performance?

The key to unlocking this talented duo is by taking the ball out of Murray's hands more. Trae Young has been Atlanta's floor general since he was drafted, and it is best if things stay that way. That does not mean Murray's contributions should decrease. Murray should devote himself to being more of a catch-and-shoot threat and a slasher, letting Young take care of the primary playmaking and shot-creating duties.

This way, Murray can focus more on defense, which is the primary area the Hawks lack. Atlanta finished the 2023-24 season ranked 21st in Team Defense, per If Murray can get back to his All-Defensive team self alongside the presence of Alexandre Sarr, Atlanta is bound to improve.

By following this guideline, the Hawks can avenge their previous showings and return strong for the 2025 NBA Playoffs. As the 2024 offseason heats up, it will be interesting to see what Atlanta does.