The Atlanta Hawks made their biggest off-season move yet by re-signing All-Star Dejounte Murray to a four-year, $120 million contract extension. That ensures that their All-Star backcourt of Trae Young and Murray will be around for the next four seasons.
Although that is a good start to the offseason, the Hawks are reportedly looking to add a third star in Pascal Siakam. Siakam has been rumored to be available, and the Hawks have recently tried trading for him. In fact, with Murray now locked in, they may renew their efforts to acquire Siakam from the Toronto Raptors. Although the Hawks sent four of their draft assets to the San Antonio Spurs to acquire Murray last summer, they may still have enough for another big trade.
Building an Atlanta-Toronto trade for Pascal Siakam.
In this hypothetical trade proposed by NBA Analyst and writer Jake Weinbach, the Hawks would give up three players recently selected in the first round of the NBA Draft in addition to a first-round pick from the Kings. With starting center Clint Capela still under contract for a couple more seasons, the Hawks can afford to move Onyeka Okongwu if it means upgrading elsewhere.
While the Raptors just re-signed Jakob Poeltl to a four-year, $80 million deal, Okongwu is five years younger and could soon prove to be a cheaper replacement at center. Meanwhile, De’Andre Hunter is one of the better three-and-D-wings in the NBA. Additionally, with three years remaining on his deal after next season, he would give Toronto insurance in case they decided to trade OG Anunoby rather than pay him after next season.
In addition to those cost-controlled players, there is Jalen Johnson, an intriguing combo forward with two years remaining on his rookie-scale deal and a projected first-round pick in the early to mid-twenties. With Siakam likely to draw significant interest in free agency after next season and almost certain to make around $40 million a year on his next contract, Toronto would probably favor cheaper, cost-controlled players that they can plug in and play without taking a significant step back.
For the Hawks, adding Siakam would allow them to form a highly skilled big three that could dramatically raise their ceiling. With Boston, Miami, Philadelphia, Cleveland, and Milwaukee all threats in the East, Atlanta could put themselves in the mix rather than be a fringe playoff team. It would be costly but with the salary cap set to soon spike and Young and Murray already under contract for four more years, extending Siakam is doable and might look like a bargain in a couple of seasons.
All in all, there are enough things to like about this deal for both teams. With Toronto likely to move Siakam and the Hawks looking to improve their roster, don’t be surprised if a deal between the two teams happens.