Atlanta Hawks: De’Andre Hunter is the third cornerstone

Atlanta Hawks Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports
Atlanta Hawks Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports /
1 of 3
Atltanta Hawks
Atlanta Hawks Mandatory Credit: Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports /

The Atlanta Hawks are building a team for the future. They are competitive now but as their young core grows, they are going to be even better in the coming two or three years. They have two of their five starters locked, and they are playing like the cornerstone pieces that they are.

Trae Young is one of the most entertaining offense first point guards in the league. His ability to create a shot for himself or for others is second nature. It has to be this way for a score-first point guard in this league, otherwise, they become easier to stop if they need a second to decide on a play.

The other cornerstone is Clint Capela whose play this season is incredible, be it scoring, rebounding, or blocking shots. He has changed this Hawks defense from being worst in the league last season to being a top-ten defense in the early part of this season.

Capela has even helped John Collins improve his defense as now Collins knows that his center has his back. The four-year man had a career-high five blocks in the recent LA Clipper matchup. They are becoming a formidable frontcourt to score against and it all starts with the Swiss pivot.

The Atlanta Hawks need De’Andre Hunter to continue to grow.

The second year of a young player’s career is pretty important. You can do one of three things. You can regress into the sophomore slump, can stay at the same level, or the desired outcome is to improve. Well, De’Andre Hunter has improved, and I believe he will be in the conversation for most improved this year.

But the Hawks need the improvement to go beyond this year. Some of the best players in the league play on the wing. While LeBron James is in his late 30’s, Kawhi Leonard, Kevin Durant, Jayson Tatum, Jimmy Butler, and so many more will need to be stopped for the Hawks to succeed.

Now let’s take a look at how he has developed into the player the Hawks will be able to continue to develop their franchise around.