Hawks requested second rounder for either Marco Belinelli or Ersan Ilyasova
The Atlanta Hawks are now trying to unload a pair of attractive, expiring contracts, namely the ones from Marco Belinelli ($6.6 million) and Ersan Ilyasova ($6 million), in exchange for high second-round picks. ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski first reported on the players’ status while Basketball Insiders’ Michael Scotto expounded on what Atlanta is seeking in return.
It’s similar to what the Phoenix Suns — also a rebuilding team — did in last season’s trade deadline, where they picked up cash considerations and a couple of draft picks for coveted defender, P.J. Tucker.
Following key departures from All-Stars Paul Millsap, Al Horford, Jeff Teague, and Kyle Korver, who powered the team to an Eastern Conference-leading 61-21 record in 2015, the Hawks, just like what many had expected, have now plummeted into the last place in the East. They are rotting in the standings with a horrid 11-30 slate, thanks in part to having one of the worst defenses in the league.
It’s just one of the many frustrations that the city of Atlanta has been experiencing, joining the the Atlanta Falcons’ stinging choke job in Super Bowl 51 and the Georgia Bulldogs’ heartbreaking loss in this year’s college football national championship.
What the Hawks offer, however, are more than just salary cap “helpers.” Though having turned into a journeyman in the last few seasons, Belinelli and Ilyasova are both proven veterans that can stroke it well from the outside, and they can also be expected to do other things effectively.