Ex-teammate’s prediction about Timberwolves’ Anthony Edwards could benefit Hawks

Atlanta Hawks, Anthony Edwards. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Atlanta Hawks, Anthony Edwards. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images) /

The Atlanta Hawks may want to keep their powder dry on any potential trades.

During an appearance on “Gil’s Arena” on September 1, Philadelphia 76ers guard Patrick Beverley said that he believes Minnesota Timberwolves star – and Atlanta native – Anthony Edwards “will get out of Minnesota”.

“I mean that’s just what that’s just what happens,” Beverley said. “No disrespect to Minnesota. It’s just, with that personality, he can change the world with basketball.”

Edwards, 22, averaged 24.6 points, 5.8 rebounds, and 4.4 assists for the Timberwolves last season, and has been a star for Team USA during the 2023 FIBA World Cup. The former No. 1 overall pick is heading into the final year of his rookie contract but will begin a five-year, $205.9 million max contract the following season.

The only way Edwards is likely to get out of Minnesota before 2029 is if he demands a trade.

That just happens to be the current way that stars change teams in the NBA now rather than free agency. And max contracts have proven to be of little consequence once a player does want to leave.

Edwards has not come out and said anything to suggest that he could want out but outside opinions have lamented the setup in Minnesota around him, at least before the trade deadline.

“I love him,” said The Ringer’s Ryen Russillo on the Ryen Rusillo podcast in February. “I think he has a chance to be on that very short list of players who can impact a franchise in a major way. … But I really hate the situation that he’s in.

Beverley compared Edwards’ superstar talent and personality to Michael Jordan and said that Edwards needed to get to a bigger market to get the “most” out of his career.

The Hawks ranked No. 7 in metro population and No. 8 in TV market size in 2022, per Hoop Social.

“I played in Minnesota,” Beverley said referring to his time as Edwards’ teammate. “There’s no diss on Minnesota. There’s no diss on lower-market teams but he is the type of player that you need to see him. … It’s different when you got 30 games on TV and you get to see that s*** every night.”

The Hawks will play 15 nationally televised games next season. That is five more than the Timberwolves but far below the league-leading 41 games for the Golden State Warriors or the 40 games for the Los Angeles Lakers who always loom as a destination for players.

Adding Edwards would likely add more national TV games, and playing with Trae Young would make the team exciting enough to add even more.

Of course, Edwards doesn’t necessarily fit with the current roster.

Hawks would have to break up backcourt for Anthony Edwards.

While adding Edwards could be a game-changer for the Hawks, they would almost certainly have to split up Young and Dejounte Murray to make the fit work. The 6-foot-4 Edwards is a shooting guard but played small forward for the Timberwolves in 2021-22, and has the frame to withstand the additional physicality.

The Hawks would be small with all three of Edwards, Murray, and especially Young, creating potential defensive issues. Both Murray and Young are under contract through at least the 2025-26 season.

They have also both been brought up in trade rumors – again, largely outside speculation – with Young being eyed as the next star to demand a trade, possibly to the Lakers.

Next. 5 Players the Hawks might replace De’Andre Hunter with. dark

Even with no signs of that being imminent, the Hawks would still be wise to plan accordingly.