The Atlanta Hawks have drafted really well over the last few seasons. This season was no exception with the Hawks managing to select AJ Griffin with the 16th pick in the 2022 NBA draft. Considering that the Hawks were going to trade up to get their man this was an incredible piece of luck in this draft.
Still, given the season that the Hawks had last season, they are in fact due for a bit of luck. They have had two very similar injury crises over the past two seasons and this has left them in a vulnerable position in both seasons. They were able to get out of it the first time a whole lot better than the second time.
However, thanks to where they finished last season they were able to select Griffin which is a needs-based signing but also taking the best player available at the time. Still, there are some who think that he will spend the majority of his time in the G League but he has the chance to break into the rotation given how they have changed over the offseason.
What role is AJ Griffin going to have with the Atlanta Hawks?
If the Hawks do the right thing by all their players, which they will, they will open up all rotation spots behind the starters and let the best players take them. Imagine Trae Young or Dejounte Murray creating with Bogdan Bogdanovic, Frank Kaminsky, and Griffin on the wings creating space. That would be a very difficult second-unit offense to contain.
Griffin is going to be used as a floor-spacer for both units depending on personnel. It will also depend on whether or not he is able to make the shots or not. After all, this is a make-or-miss league and the Hawks are very reluctant to play their rookies.
Still, given his college stats from deep, Griffin is a good chance to buck the Hawks’ trend and get minutes. If he can develop on the court while making his shots, then this will be a win-win for both team and the player.