NBA Draft: Landing the no. 1 pick is a double-edged sword for the Hawks

The Atlanta Hawks were the surprise winners of the NBA Draft lottery and have the number one pick, giving them options—just perhaps not good ones. 
Trae Young, Dejounte Murray
Trae Young, Dejounte Murray / Kevin C. Cox/GettyImages

The Atlanta Hawks were the surprise winners of the NBA Draft lottery, giving them more options than they were expected to have. Unfortunately for the Hawks, this may be the worst possible draft to land the number one overall pick, with many questioning whether there are any future stars.

History tells us that most drafts produce at least five all-stars, so the odds are that several players will emerge but it's not exactly clear who yet. Still, it gives the Hawks an opportunity to reset since they will have a potential rebuilding block that will hopefully help them rebuild.

Nevertheless, Atlanta won't have control of their first rounders for the next three years after they select first overall, putting added pressure on them to nail the selection.

Can the Atlanta Hawks find a star in a lackluster draft?

Since landing the number one pick, the player most consistently mocked to be selected by Atlanta is Alexandre Saar. Saar is a 7'1 big man who projects to be a terrific rim protector and who also has the mobility to defend away from the basket.

On offense, he can be the ideal roll man and there is an outside chance that he evolves into a 3-point shooter, though that would be the best-case scenario. He certainly looks like a high lottery pick, a number one pick even, and given how the Hawks have a limited number of ways in which to improve, they should take him in the hopes that he can emerge as a star.

They can also use his selection as an opportunity to shop current starting center Clint Capela in the hopes of getting a first-round pick. Then there is the chance that they move either Trae Young or Dejounte Murray. Young is young enough to still build around at 25 but Saar would need to make an impact relatively soon, with Young having just a couple of seasons remaining on his contract.

That would complicate their plan to retool around Young and they may be better off trading him to the highest bidder and taking their lumps for the next few seasons until they are either able to draft with their own picks or Saar hopefully emerges.

Overall, the Hawks having the number one pick gives them options. However, a lackluster draft may not yield the franchise-changer that is often associated with landing the top pick.