The Atlanta Hawks secure Sharife Cooper on a two-way deal

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

The Atlanta Hawks secured another piece of the 2022-22 season. During the early part of the offseason, the Hawks moved swiftly to offer their sophomore guard Sharife Cooper a two-way qualifying offer to secure his services for next season.

The guard spent most of his rookie season developing in the G League where he even fell behind Cat Barber as the starting point guard for the College Park Skyhawks. This caused the Hawks to have a Cooper problem, what were they to do with their second-round pick moving forward.

Well, what the Hawks did to solve this problem was they doubled down on Cooper. That seems to be the right way to go, he had shown so much promise last season with the Skyhawks that he could start contributing to the varsity squad at some point this season.

The Atlanta Hawks were not fooled by what happened in the Summer League.

Unfortunately for Cooper, he did not have a good Summer League. In fact, thanks to the injury to his thumb, it was conceivable that the Hawks may have shut him down. They didn’t and then he showed his versatility in the final two games, helping to make other players on the team better and helping their chances of making the Hawk’s regular-season roster.

This is what the Hawks see in Cooper and why they moved so quickly to re-sign him. Yes, he is going to spend a large chunk of time in the G League, continuing to develop but this is going to be crucial for the team. His play is going to help develop this season’s second-round pick Tyrese Martin who is going to be with the franchise for the next two seasons.

Cooper should play more minutes than he did last season. That should not be too hard given that he only played 39 minutes for the entire 82 games. While the Hawks have a tremendous guard rotation, they showed last season that too many guards are never enough.