There will be plenty to look forward to this season Atlanta Hawks fans

BOSTON, MA - FEBRUARY 27: DeAndre Bembry
BOSTON, MA - FEBRUARY 27: DeAndre Bembry /

Yes, the Atlanta Hawks are set to be a horrible ball club. That does not mean however, that they won’t be worth taking a look at this season.

For fair reasons, there’s a league-wide expectation for the Hawks to be unwatchable during the 2017-2018 NBA season. Out of all 30 teams, the Hawks took one of the hardest blows to their roster this summer, losing their entire starting frontcourt in Paul Millsap and Dwight Howard. That alone should leave Atlanta walking away with a losing record when its all said and done. The Hawks went 43-39 with Millsap and Howard, so one could only imagine what they’ll look like on the court with a younger and less experienced team.

And that’s where things get interesting. For the first time in a long time the Hawks are in full rebuild mode. Most Hawks fans look at this as a bad thing, but it should serve as a breath of fresh air for a team that seemed to be trapped in a revolving door for years. The Atlanta Hawks fan base will no longer have to stress out over making the playoffs, and later losing to a top tier team in the East in later rounds. Instead of being upset about not being an elite team, its time to embrace the rebuild and everything that comes with it Hawks fans.

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The Growth of a Superstar

The NBA hasn’t had a chance to watch a young Hawks player develop into a superstar in a long time. I mean sure, the Hawks did play a major role in Al Horford’s development but, he was an all-star not a superstar. Same for Jeff Teague and Paul Millsap. Dennis Schroder has great potential to be a game-changing point guard.

Everyone loves seeing an elite player dominate on the court. But fans get a more authentic experience having watched their beloved superstar start off as a kid with untapped potential, to an unstoppable force on the hardwood.

Schroder has everything it takes to be a fan favorite in the NBA. He has a unique look and personality mixed with a passion for throwing flashy passes and finishing at the rim. He isn’t exactly a sharpshooter just yet, but he does have a potent midrange game. And If he improves his long range shot, he’ll be a force to be reckoned with if he can combine elite shooting with his speed and acceleration while dribbling the ball.

Hawks fans will have the special privilege of being able to criticize and critique Schroder’s evolution as a basketball player. Think of it as watching a child grow into a teenager, and then an adult, and being able to enjoy them thrive in life like proud parents. That’s how it’ll feel to be a Hawks fan if Schroder is lucky enough to mature into one of the league’s best guards.

There will be games this season where Dennis Schroder puts up 30+ points to go along with a high number of assists. The Hawks may lose games still, even after solid performances from Schroder, but it’s the potential there that counts. After averaging 17.9 points, 6.3 assists, and 3.1 rebounds in his first year as a starter, Schroder should be on the verge of a breakout season in his second year playing that role.

The Young Guys

Dennis Schroder isn’t the only player for the Hawks looking to turn heads this season. The Hawks are finally young again. This means that there will be opportunities for every player to showcase their skills in hopes of earning more of a permanent spot on the roster. For all we know, Taurean Prince, DeAndre Bembry, Mike Muscala, Nicolas Brussino, or John Collins could be future stars. Both Bembry and Collins had impressive Summer League performances. Prince showed up big last season for the Hawks when given the chance to display his skillset.

Brussino played well with Dallas towards the end of the season when the Mavericks awarded him with more playing time. Muscala never had the opportunity to start, but he now has a chance with no Dwight Howard or Al Horford hogging all of the minutes. What I’m trying to say is that the Hawks fans get to witness not only growth of Schroder, but also the maturation of other young players.

No one knows exactly what all of these players are made of due to limited NBA experience. The mystique of these youthful players is where the beauty lies. The Hawks could possess the next Pau Gasol, Manu Ginobili, Dominique Wilkins, PG13, etc..You just never know what a player can become until you can watch them for an entire season. It’ll be fun to look for diamond in the roughs this season if your an Atlanta Hawks fan.

How does Coach Bud rank?

All eyes will be on Coach Mike Budenholzer as he enters his 5th year as Atlanta’s head coach. Everyone knows the Hawks won’t be the sharpest needle in the pack. But Coach Bud is known to make a subpar team look so in sync with each other. Bud has not been able to get his hands on any real superstars since being in Atlanta. This year, there’s 99.9% chance that the Hawks won’t even have an All-Star.

With a  young team and new personnel, Budenholzer will be put to his greatest test as a head coach. If he can get the Hawks to sniff the playoffs this season, you have no choice but to give the guy his credit. If the Hawks do happen to make the playoffs, its no way you could convince me he’s not a top 3 coach in the NBA. This is something you’d want to pay attention to as a Hawks fan.

Coach Mike Budenholzer will play a major role in the development of these young players. He’ll be in charge of teaching these guys his infamous system and having them apply what they’ve learned somewhere down the line at a more important time. Nothing is better than drafting a player and having them turn into a skilled player through a disciplined system, just ask Bud’s mentor, Coach Gregg Popovich.

The NBA Draft

The Atlanta Hawks haven’t landed a top 10 draft pick in a long time. Because the Atlanta Hawks have made the playoffs 10 straight years in a row, they haven’t really had a good reason to be anxious for the NBA draft. Now, the fans can do their own scouting and enjoy college basketball like never before.

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Yes, the Atlanta Hawks have a very realistic chance of getting Michael Porter Jr., Marvin Bagley, and any other big named prospect coming out of college or from overseas. Instead of being one of those teams that have to sit back and hope that someone is overlooked and falls low in the draft, the Hawks can hope to get a high draft pick.

If you’re a Hawks fans you have so much to look forward to.