The Atlanta Hawks are reportedly still talking to the San Antonio Spurs about a Dejounte Murray trade. Prior reporting suggested the trade would involve a swap of Murray and John Collins, among other moving parts. Now, however, it seems there’s a possibility Collins isn’t involved at all in the deal.
According to WSB-Ch. 2 Atlanta Sports Director Zach Klein, the package would involve Danilo Gallinari and multiple draft picks:
In talking with multiple sources around the NBA, many believe Hawks on verge of trading for San Antonio's All-Star guard Dejounte Murray – However, it's looking like John Collins is not part of deal. Would be Gallo & multiple 1st round picks. Spurs prepping for future & '23 draft
— Zach Klein (@ZachKleinWSB) June 27, 2022
The initial reporting on Murray trade talks suggested the Spurs wanted a package similar to what the New Orleans Pelicans got from the Milwaukee Bucks for Jrue Holiday. That involved three first-round picks and two pick swaps.
Even if the Hawks trade a lot of draft capital in a deal for Murray, getting a trade done without including Collins would be a win for them. Atlanta could then look to trade Collins for help elsewhere or perhaps even try to keep him, though it seems like things are too far gone with him at this point. Pairing Murray and Trae Young together would make for one of the most dynamic backcourts in the NBA and give the Hawks an even brighter future.
As for the Spurs, they seem to have their eyes on their long-term future. While Murray is just 25, he helps make San Antonio competitive. Making this trade, especially without taking Collins back, would signal a tank season in an effort to get French phenom Victor Wembanyama at the top of the 2023 NBA Draft.
One could argue the Spurs shouldn’t be entertaining Murray offers because of how good he is at just 25. However, if they really want to go all out for Wemby, the All-Star guard would hurt that cause. If the Hawks make it worth San Antonio’s while in terms of draft compensation, perhaps the trigger will be pulled on this trade.