REPORT: John Collins, Hawks not exactly close to getting a deal done
The Atlanta Hawks and John Collins have mutual interest in running it back after their Eastern Conference Finals run in in the 2021 playoffs. However, “interest” doesn’t equate to anything until a deal is done.
Unfortunately for the Hawks, it looks like they will have trouble in re-signing their rising big man. According to Shams Charania of The Athletic and Stadium, the two sides are “not close” to an agreement.
Latest on Atlanta Hawks and restricted free agent John Collins: pic.twitter.com/FP4NemyiDi
— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) August 2, 2021
While it looked like the Hawks would prioritize re-signing John Collins and prevent him from entertaining other offers, the latest development isn’t really surprising. After all, when the season ended for Atlanta, team owner Tony Ressler got brutally honest on the possibility of breaking the roster due to luxury tax concerns.
“It’s complicated, of course, because what we’re trying to convince people is we’re building something, but let’s not kid ourselves, our job is to run a good business,” Ressler said earlier last July. “What we are trying to achieve is literally keeping our best players, as you could imagine, trying to make clear that we’re going to have to spend a lot more than we have this season. We fully expect that. I’m not sure we’re going to be able to keep every single player that we want to keep. Pretty good bet, pretty good assumption we will not. But I do think we have several years that we should be able to build some real stability. If the question is are we scared of the tax, are we scared of going into the tax? I’m scared of paying the tax and not being a good team, yes, that I’m scared of, but if we have to go into the tax to be a great team for a period of time, so be it.”
Ressler also seemed hesitant to pay Collins the big money he wants, noting that there should be a “fair agreement” when it comes to max contracts.
It is uncertain where Collins will end up with, as the likes of the Dallas Mavericks and San Antonio Spurs are said to be interested in signing him. Whether he gets the max contract offer he’s searching for, however, is another matter.