Former Hawks vet sends message on joining division rival

Atlanta Hawks. (Photo by Giuseppe Cottini/Getty Images)
Atlanta Hawks. (Photo by Giuseppe Cottini/Getty Images) /

The Atlanta Hawks roster just five players who were a part of their surprising run to the Eastern Conference Finals in 2021: Bogdan Bogdanovic, Clint Capela, De’Andre Hunter, Onyeka Okongwu, and Trae Young. One of their key veterans from that run, Danilo Gallinari, has found a new home and it’s a little close for comfort.

He sent a message to his new team’s fanbase.

“Thrilled to be part of the Wizards family and looking forward to embracing this amazing city,” Gallinari tweeted on July 28. “Feeling stronger every day and can’t wait to give my all on the court and guide and support our talented roster. Let’s make this season unforgettable!”

Divisions don’t matter in the NBA as much as they do in other sports. But Gallinari is not the only ex-Hawk in Washington.

He joins former team president Travis Schlenk who put that 2021 team together and was hired this offseason to do the same for Washinton. Schlenk drafted two of the players listed above and traded for the other two on their respective draft nights before unexpectedly stepping down in December.

Gallinari, 34, missed the entire 2022-23 campaign after tearing his ACL.

That was not long after fulfilling a childhood dream of signing with the Boston Celtics. He signed with Boston last offseason after the Hawks traded him to the San Antonio Spurs in a package for Dejounte Murray and Gallinari was subsequently waived.

That long winding path now puts him on track to face the Hawks more than most other teams next season.

Gallinari averaged 11.7 points, 4.7 rebounds, and 1.5 assists while shooting 38.1% from deep in his last healthy season. He was a key piece for the Hawks, equally effective whether he was coming off the bench or starting leaving the Hawks’ bench devoid of some of its unique flexibility with his departure.

Adidas drops special tribute video for ‘Trae Young 3s’

The latest iteration of Young’s self-titled signature sneaker isn’t set to be available to the public until August 3. But leading up to that, Adidas dropped a new ad for the shoe and it features a special guest narrator in Young’s younger brother, Timothy, who speaks of looking up to the Hawks star, defends him from criticism, and marvels at what he’s already accomplished.

It concludes with the Timothy noting something that Young has spoken about in the past. That it’s “bigger than basketball” and instead about “legacy”.

Both previous versions of Young’s signature shoe were received well, and there’s little reason to believe it will be different this time around.

Next. 2 Young players the Hawks should develop, 2 to give up on. dark

Young’s celebrity has only grown as he continues to leave his mark on the NBA.