Atlanta Hawks: Cooper, Johnson give Young-to-Collins vibes

Atlanta Hawks. Mandatory Credit: Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports
Atlanta Hawks. Mandatory Credit: Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports /

The Atlanta Hawks have had a solid offseason, to say the least, on the heels of an impressive in-season turnaround. Not only did they start 14-20 but they also had internal issues over play style. They filled their remaining immediate needs in free agency but not before nailing their draft picks.

We said as much immediately after the draft and again following the impressive Summer League debuts of Jalen Johnson and Sharife Cooper.

On Tuesday, the duo gave us very familiar vibes in their second game together.

Atlanta Hawks draft picks gave serious Young-to-Collins vibes in second Summer League game

More from Hawks News

Johnson was all the talk after the first game with an effortless 20-10 double-double in his first live game action since February.

He had another 18-10 against the Pacers, by the way.

But this time, second-round pick Sharife Cooper was the star of the show.

The former Auburn Tiger went 5-for-8 from three-point distance and made several big shots down the stretch.

That included this smooth stepback.

This game was huge for Cooper (yes, even in Summer League) because the knock on him coming out of Auburn was that he didn’t shoot the ball well and his size. He alleviated some concern of the latter by getting to the basket plenty against the Celtics.

Cooper, who finished with 21 points and nine assists on 8-of-14 shooting, acknowledged after hitting the game-winning triple that he’s been working on his shot.

That isn’t even what caught our eye, though, as great as it was. It was this lob to Johnson.

If that doesn’t look like Trae Young setting up John Collins as we’ve seen so many times before, nothing does. The fact that both Cooper and Johnson share similar builds as their veteran teammates only adds to the visual.

After their first game together Cooper said of Johnson, “He’s a great player. I can’t wait to continue playing with him, somebody that’s extremely athletic, can score on his own, can space the floor, he does it all.”

For the record, after Cooper hit the game-winner, Johnson returned the praise, simply saying he knew it was going in.

Next. Atlanta Hawks : 3 improvements John Collins must make next season. dark

This duo is going to be fun to watch for years and while they have a long way to go as far as reaching the height Young and Collins have — figuratively at least — what they’ve shown so far is nothing less than impressive. Again, albeit in two games of Summer League action.