Atlanta Hawks: Why extending Kevin Huerter is crucial this offseason

Atlanta Hawks. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports
Atlanta Hawks. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports /

The Atlanta Hawks have some big moves to make this offseason. They need to re-sign John Collins, extend Trae Young, and extend Kevin Huerter. They have several other less impactful moves to make but these are the key three for the offseason.

Collins is relatively simple. He will sign an offer sheet with another franchise and the Hawks will match it if they think they can afford to. It will be a similar story with Young, whatever they can offer him, they will, and he is worth it.

However, while signing Huerter to an extension may not seem too important, it is one of the moves which could keep the Hawks competitive for years to come. I have stated before that I believe Huerter is a similar player to Nate McMillan, with better offense.

How the Atlanta Hawks are better with Kevin Huerter

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To put it simply, Huerter is the glue player that every single franchise needs. Anything that is asked of him from the situation the team finds themselves in, he will do his best to provide. This was a trademark of McMillan’s game when he played for the Seattle Supersonics.

Huerter started the season as the lead bench player, he was often one of the few players who could impact the game outside the stars. He had several games where he hit more than half the 3-point makes for the team when they were struggling from deep earlier in the season.

He would also come on and create offense as the second-string point guard. Rajon Rondo missed time at the start of the season and was then ineffective when he came on. Huerter carried this load until he was pressed into service as a starter.

This occurred due to the extended injury crisis suffered by the Hawks injury crisis. He played the two-guard and small forward spots as required. He would start with the Hawks until the trade that sent Rondo to the LA Clippers for Lou Williams.

During the time that neither player was available for the Hawks, Coach McMillan took Huerter out of the starting lineup so that he could run the second unit. Bogdan Bogdanovic then made the starting two-guard spot his own.

Herter then came back into the starting lineup when John Collins injured his ankle. Solomon Hill started at the power forward spot and Huerter slipped in at small forward. Throughout it all, the Hawks are sitting in a guaranteed playoff spot, despite the massive injury issues they have had.

Next. Predicted lineups once the team is healthy. dark

While Huerter may not put up massive numbers every night, he does a little bit of everything. Without him the Hawks are a lottery-bound team again this season, that is how vital Huerter is to this franchise.