4 Teams that need to trade for Hawks’ Trae Young immediately

Atlanta Hawks. Mandatory Credit: Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports
Atlanta Hawks. Mandatory Credit: Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports /
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Atlanta Hawks, Trae Young
Atlanta Hawks, Trae Young. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports /

The rumors of Trae Young wanting to leave the Atlanta Hawks have been overblown. But that doesn’t mean that teams shouldn’t be paying attention or that the Hawks shouldn’t listen. After all, we have these situations devolve rapidly and the team is left scrambling to make things work in the aftermath.

Again, neither Young nor the Hawks seem ready for a separation.

If cracks in the foundation do begin to show, however, these teams need to be on the phones immediately to try to acquire the talented two-time All-Star.

Clippers could cut try to undercut rival Lakers for Hawks star

The LA Clippers have been linked to James Harden for some time as he plots his exit from the Philadelphia 76ers. But, as has been the case for the Hawks with Toronto Raptors star forward Pascal Siakam, nothing has come to fruition.

Perhaps the Clippers change their aim for a younger – and, certainly at this point, more dynamic – playmaker in Young.

Harden led the NBA in assists per game last season.

But, for the second year in a row, Young led in total assists, one year after also leading the NBA in total points. Young is certainly smaller and more slight of frame than the 6-foot-5, 220-pound Harden. But that has not helped Harden much defensively which would be the most obvious drawback of trading for the smaller Young.

Things could also get trickier than some other potential landing spots when trying to cobble together an acceptable offer.

LA would have to throw in all available trade assets since none will be conveyed before the 2027 draft. From there the question is which direction are the Hawks trying to go in the aftermath of a Young trade.

If Atlanta is looking to reset like their salary-cap mindfulness suggests could be possible, they could opt to go for a package featuring several pieces they could flip in subsequent deals much like the Brooklyn Nets did at the deadline in February. Or, they could try to take advantage of the Clippers’ exorbitant luxury tax bill and go for a bigger fish like Paul George.

A move like this would seem to suggest the Clippers would want to keep George, though, making their offer less appealing if the Hawks seek the same thing.