Trade update II: Hawks trade No. 50 pick James Ennis to Miami Heat for future second round pick.
Trade update III: Hawks trade No. 47 pick Raul Neto to Utah Jazz in exchange for 2015 second-round pick
Areas of Strength
The Hawks have Al Horford as their frontcourt anchor. And he's as good a player as you can start with in terms of his production, dependability and versatility for the position. But he's the only area of strength remaining on the roster with so many free agents whose futures will be sorted out after July 1.
The Hawks need help everywhere. There are 12-13 roster spots that need to be filled and a new coach, Mike Budenholzer, and his staff that will have to put all the new faces in the right places when GM Danny Ferry and his staff flesh out the roster. The backcourt needs to be rebuilt to play the attacking style Budenholzer says he will deploy and the depth up front and on the perimeter, will be a crucial component if the Hawks going to avoid dipping back into the lottery.
Two Stats That Matter
24.5 -- The Hawks' assist average during the 2012-13 regular season, second best in the league. That's a surprisingly high mark for a team that finished in the middle of the pack (14th) in the league in points per game. Former coach Larry Drew promised to bring a different offensive flow and did just that.
17 -- The Hawks snagged hometown kid Josh Smith with the 17th pick in the 2004 Draft. Nine years later they enter the Draft armed with the 17th pick again and in need of a replacement for Smith, a free agent this summer who is almost certainly going to end up elsewhere.
The Way To Go
Ferry got his man in a somewhat bizarre head coaching search that included him pursue other coaches while Drew remained under contract and a "candidate" to retain the job he'd done for three seasons, each one culminating with a postseason bid. But Budenholzer, the longtime San Antonio Spurs assistant, allows Ferry to complete his franchise makeover with all of his own people in place. The Hawks are simply in need of quality depth with these four draft picks. The $33 million in cap space they'll be armed with come July 1 is what they'll need to acquire franchise talent, guys who can help replace free agents like Josh Smith and Devin Harris and give Horford the sort of company he'll need to help keep the Hawks stretch their current playoff streak to seven straight seasons. The chances of landing a future All-Star at 17 or 18 is a bit of a long shot. But with picks at both spots, the Hawks can chase a star with one of them and counter with a reliable rotation player with the other pick.
2012-13 Team Stats (points per 100 possessions, with NBA rank)
Offensive: 102.7 (15st)
Defensive: 101.8 (10th)
G: John Jenkins
G: Lou Williams
G: Shelvin Mack
F: Mike Scott
F/C: Al Horford
G: Jeff Teague (restricted)
G: Devin Harris
G: Dahntay Jones
G/F: Kyle Korver
F: Josh Smith
F: Anthony Tolliver
F: Ivan Johnson (restricted)
F/C: Johan Petro
C: Zaza Pachulia
Recent Draft History
2012: John Jenkins (23), Mike Scott (43
2011: Keith Benson (48)
2010: Damion James (24), Pape Sy (53
2009: Jeff Teague (19), Sergiy Gladyr (49
2007: Al Horford (3), Acie Law IV (11
2006: Shelden Williams (5), Solomon Jones (33)
-- Sekou Smith