The Atlanta Hawks extend Sharife Cooper a qualifying offer

Atlanta Hawks. Mandatory Credit: Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports
Atlanta Hawks. Mandatory Credit: Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports /

The Atlanta Hawks are looking towards their future with some of the moves that they are making this offseason already. They made what will go down as one of the best trades of the offseason when they moved Danilo Gallinari and draft capitol for Dejounte Murray. The former Spurs guard is going to have an immediate impact on the team.

However, the Hawks only have nine guaranteed contracts on their roster with $146.3 million worth of salary on their books. To this end, they have extended Sharife Cooper a qualifying offer to the value of $1.5 million per Hoops Hype.

This actually says a lot about where the Hawks are at in the development of Cooper who is one of the hardest-working players in the NBA right now. They are looking to continue his development next season as they see tremendous potential in the second-year guard.

What the Atlanta Hawks extending a qualifying offer to Sharife Cooper gets them

What the Hawks get by extending Cooper this two-way qualifying offer is that they will get a player on a minimum salary who has been in their system for a year already. This is important for the Hawks due to their salary cap situation.

However, it also shows a tremendous level of faith in their young prospect who was stuck between teams last season. He put in some monster effort in the G League but only played a smattering of minutes in a handful of NBA games last season.

Given that he was such a late pick in the 2021 NBA draft and barely saw any court time with the varsity squad, it is unlikely that the Hawks will have any difficulty re-signing Cooper. He can continue to develop in the G League for next season, hopefully getting called up to play in the NBA at times.

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With luck, Cooper may be able to follow in Skylar Mays‘ footsteps. He was offered a two-way qualifying offer last season before signing a full NBA deal toward the end of last season. One thing is for sure, if hard work is any indicator of whether he will be offered a full deal, then Cooper will have a really good chance of getting one.