Grade the trade: 3-team pitch reunites Hawks' Trae Young with childhood friend

This proposed trade sees Atlanta Hawks star Trae Young reunite with a friend and former childhood teammate.
Atlanta Hawks guard Trae Young
Atlanta Hawks guard Trae Young / Michael Hickey/GettyImages
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The Atlanta Hawks should be looking to build up roster in pursuit of a return to the Eastern Conference Finals and, ultimately, the NBA Finals. 

Anything short of that and a rebuild could be their next organizational phase.

That is the theme of a new trade proposal from Bleacher Report’s Andy Bailey that would see the Hawks part with Trae Young and Bogdan Bogdanovic. Bailey suggests a three-team deal that would net a pair of young guards and draft capital for the Hawks.

Hawks trade proposal lands pair of former top-20 picks & more for Trae Young, Bogdan Bogdanovic

Trae/MPJ to ORL

“Young is younger and more productive. Building around him is probably the more traditional path, but he's also likely to bring in the bigger return in a trade,” Bailey wrote on June 10. “And even without Young, the Hawks can remain relatively competitive as they figure out how aggressively they'd like to pursue a rebuild.”

Cole Anthony averaged 11.6 points, 3.8 rebounds, and 2.9 assists last season.  The No. 15 overall pick of the 2020 NBA Draft, he thrived off the bench this past season. He is a weak defender and shooter (34.3% on 3P for his career).

With 4.1 career assists per game, he is also far from the playmaker that Young is, which would leave Murray to carry a heavier burden than may be ideal. 

Anthony is starting a three-year, $39.1 million contract this season.

Anthony Black was the No. 6 overall pick in 2023. He averaged 4.6 points, 2.0 rebounds, and 1.3 assists as a rookie, knocking down 39.4% of his 1.4 triples while seeing just under 17 minutes per game.

This deal would cut nearly $40 million from the Hawks’ bottom line in 2024-25. Spotrac projects the No. 28 pick will land a 2-plus-2 deal worth $13 million with a $2.5 million salary in 2024-25. 

The Hawks would be more than $37 million in the black with this deal.

Bailey points to Dejounte Murray and Jalen Johnson – whose playmaking ability presents options in transition – as a competitive foundation. The Hawks posted a plus-1.4 net efficiency differential when they shared the floor without Young last season, per Cleaning The Glass. 

They posted a minus-8.4 rating with all three on the court together. The Hawks also posted a plus-3.7 net efficiency differential when Young and Johnson played without Murray last season.

Moving Young might require getting more certainty back for the next iteration of the team. 

Grade – B+: This would be a great start if the Hawks signaled they wanted to rebuild. But they would need more useful pieces than Anthony and Black if they wanted to remain competitive