Atlanta Hawks: 3 final takeaways from an encouraging Summer League

Atlanta Hawks. Mandatory Credit: Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports
Atlanta Hawks. Mandatory Credit: Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports /
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Atlanta Hawks final Summer League takeaway No. 1: The rookies will make it hard to keep them down

This summer has been all about how impressive both Johnson and Cooper have been and how insane it was they were available for the Hawks. Despite knowing where both will be most of the season (Johnson with the Hawks and Cooper, who’s on a two-way deal, with the Skyhawks) we only have expectations for what their roles will be.

Johnson in particular is going to have a tough go of trying to crack the rotation. The Hawks are two and three-deep at every position. And all of them have proven to be capable of high-level performance in critical situations.

But he has a playing style that would fit very well in any number of combinations of current Hawks.

If he continues to show the knack for being in the right spot and making the right play, his ability to rebound and defend can take the pressure off of De’Andre Hunter and John Collins simultaneously in small-ball lineups.

And with the Hawks payroll only growing as they lock their own draft picks up long term, it would behoove them to see what the 6-foot-8, 210-pound Johnson can do.

Cooper’s path is admittedly more complicated. But he is going to put up monster numbers in the G-League for sure. We’ve already seen his quickness allow him to get to the cup with ease and finishing over bigger defenders hasn’t been a problem.

And while his 33.3 percent clip from beyond the arc is nothing to write home about, he clearly hit them when they were needed.

You can’t teach what Cooper has. And being a homegrown product, the spotlight could be even greater for a player that’s shown he thrives when the lights are brightest. It will be interesting to see what he does when he finally gets his chance.