12 Potential Targets in Free Agency for Atlanta Hawks

MILWAUKEE, WI - MARCH 21: Jabari Parker
MILWAUKEE, WI - MARCH 21: Jabari Parker /
12 of 13
MINNEAPOLIS, MN – MARCH 08: Marcus Smart
MINNEAPOLIS, MN – MARCH 08: Marcus Smart /

Marcus Smart

Though the outlook was dire in Boston after both Kyrie Irving and his backup, Marcus Smart, went down with injuries recently, the Celtics have continued to roll along – defeating opponents with clutch shooting and even downing the East-leading Raptors – pushing the Celts to only 2 games behind the Raptors for the number one seed in the Eastern Conference.

Because Marcus Smart will be a restricted free agent this offseason, has the terrific play of his team without him affected his leverage? They definitely love him in Boston, and his defense and indefatigable motor are extremely valuable and enjoyable to watch. Against the Rockets in late December, Smart almost single-handedly won the game with a clutch bucket and two offensive fouls drawn from James Harden:

But for all that effort and energy, his penchant for clanking bricks from downtown is sometimes difficult to watch – especially when he hijacks possessions from more efficient players like Al Horford, Jayson Tatum or Jaylen Brown.

Smart’s market will probably be lukewarm this offseason, but he is definitely a player who can affect a team’s culture – a part of the Hawks’ franchise that could do with a jolt. At only 24 years old, Smart will meet the age requirements of a rebuilding team, and he could help to school the 3-4 draft picks that will enter “Hawks Univeristy” this offseason.

Smart is also a terrific defender who can switch across four positions, another invaluable aspect of his skill set that would greatly benefit Atlanta.