2014 Draft Picks: Round 1 - Pick 15 | Round 2 - Pick 43
TRADE 1: Atlanta Hawks acquire No. 48 pick Lamar Patterson from Milwaukee in exchange for a 2015 second-round pick.
Areas of Strength
Mike Budenholzer's adaptation of the Spurs Way in Atlanta produced beautiful results in the playoffs. The regular season was a choppy deal, given all of the injuries the Hawks had to overcome. But once we got a chance to see Coach Bud and his crew lock in on the Indiana Pacers in the first round of the playoffs, it's clear that with the right players in this system, the Hawks have a chance to move up the food chain in the East.
It was reasonable to question the Hawks' depth when Al Horford was lost for the season the day after Christmas with that torn pectoral muscle. But the Hawks survived without him. Horford won't be cleared for full activity until just before training camp begins, so the Hawks need to make sure they locate adequate frontcourt reinforcements in case of an emergency.
Two Stats That Matter
2 -- The Hawks shared the ball beautifully this season, led by Jeff Teague's playmaking ways in a new system, ranking among the top two teams in the league in assists. It's a stark contrast to the way they played previously, when isolation plays were the staple of the offense under both Mike Woodson and Larry Drew.
28 -- Like several other teams in the Southeast Division, the Hawks are hampered by a lack of size on the interior that leaves them vulnerable at critical times (against Indiana in the playoffs) in the rebounding game. They have to escape from that bottom-five perch in the rebounding rankings.
The Way To Go
NBA.com's Draft expert, Scott Howard-Cooper, offers up his suggestions:
The first, obvious boost to the depth will be a healthy 2014-15 from Al Horford. They could also add another big, 2013 first-rounder Lucas Nogueira, who played this season in Spain. Both, especially Horford, will lead to needed improvement in rebounding, allowing the Hawks to go several different ways at No. 15 with several wings as possibilities: Nik Stauskas, Rodney Hood, Gary Harris and P.J. Hairston.
2013-14 Team Stats (points per 100 possessions, with NBA rank)
Offensive: 103.4 (15th)
Defensive: 104.1 (14th)
G: Jeff Teague
G/F: Kyle Korver
F: Paul Millsap
F: DeMarre Carroll
C: Al Horford
F/C: Pero Antic
F: Mike Muscala
G: Louis Williams
G: Dennis Schroeder
G: John Jenkins
G: Shelvin Mack
F: Mike Scott
F: Elton Brand
C: Gustavo Ayon
F: Cartier Martin
Recent Draft History
2013: Dennis Schroeder (17), Shane Larkin (18), Raul Neto (47), James Ennis (50)
2012: John Jenkins (23), Mike Scott (43)
2011: Keith Benson (48)
2010: Damion James (24), Pape Sy (53)
2009: Jeff Teague (17), Sergiy Gladyr (49)
-- Sekou Smith