Mike Scott is back!
The one they call yung emoji has agreed to a three-year deal worth $10 million with the Atlanta Hawks, with a team option for the final year.
The news of Mike Scott coming to terms with the Hawks comes shortly after the Hawks forward was considering a “lucrative offer” with Russian team CSKA-Moscow.
Scott is coming off a career year lasts season, averaging 9.6 points and 3.6 rebounds per game.
Scott was a restricted free agent for the Hawks after receiving a qualifying offer from the team. He and teammate Shelvin Mack were the only two players from Atlanta to receive qualifying offers. Mack signed with the Atlanta Hawks last week, making Scott the only restricted free agent left for the Hawks to come to terms with.
While Scott can play both forward positions, he technically becomes the third “power forward” on the depth chart.
Last season, Scott split time with Elton Brand and Paul Millsap at the power forward position. He received about 18.5 minutes per game thanks to a slew of injuries to Atlanta’s frontcourt players.
Although Scott expects a similar role this season, he may have to lower his expectations. Atlanta is healthy again which is going to make minutes hard to come by.
Atlanta selected Adreian Payne with the 15th overall draft pick in June, and that’s not exactly a good thing for Scott. Payne, another power forward, has a similar skill set to Scott in that he is very athletic and can stretch the floor. The addition of Payne could limit Scott’s playing time, especially if Payne is able to produce early on.
Another negative going for the third-year forward is that the Hawks signed Kent Bazemore in free agency. Bazemore showed some real promise after being traded to the Los Angeles Lakers, finishing the season averaging 13 points per game. If Scott is unable to produce early on in the upcoming season, he may find his role as primary bench scorer reduced.
Although Mike has many things going against him, don’t count him out. He is very athletic and can play both forward positions. As a result of the moves the Hawks have made this offseason, expect him to receive more playing time at small forward.
Scott will have to adjust his game. While his strong offensive ability was on display during the regular season, and especially during the playoffs, his defensive ability was often exposed.
He will have to become a better perimeter defender if he wants to make a smooth transition to the 3. Small forward’s are much quicker. Scott will need to be able to keep up with the quickness of opposing wing players if he wants to receive the same amount of playing time he did last year.
The Hawks do not have much depth at the small forward position. This is the only spot where Mike Scott can make up his lost minutes.
Atlanta Hawks fans should be happy about Mike Scott’s return to the team. He is a great stretch 4 with a lot of athleticism. However, if Scott wants to see himself with the minutes he received last season, he will have to improve his defense and make a transition to be able to play both forward positions effectively.
If Scott cannot make the necessary adjustments, he will see his playing time diminished. Additionally, Scott will have to start the season well. He has more incentive thanks to his new contract, and Hawks fans should hope that translates into a more motivated player.
What do you think of the Mike Scott signing? Let us know in the comments!