Hawks' Trae Young sends 5-word message on Magic's Paolo Banchero

Atlanta Hawks star Trae Young took in some playoff action and shared a brief message on Orlando Magic big man Paolo Banchero that caught fans' attention.
Orlando Magic v Cleveland Cavaliers - Game Seven
Orlando Magic v Cleveland Cavaliers - Game Seven / Jason Miller/GettyImages

The Atlanta Hawks’ offseason came early, leaving them at home during the playoffs for the first time in four years. Some Hawks stars have filled that free time by taking in the ongoing action in the playoffs.

Trae Young is no stranger to playoff hoops as a participant and a notable spectator in his career. 

He is also among those who are bullish on Orlando Magic forward Paolo Banchero, especially after his latest showing.

With the Magic and Cleveland Cavaliers locked in a Game 7, Banchero set an NBA record with 24 points in the first half, the most ever in a Game 7 by a player 21 years old or younger. Young was certainly impressed.

“Mannn I love Paolo game!” Young posted on X on May 5.

Young’s remarks drew out the usual responses in the replies, particularly regarding his future in Atlanta. Despite insisting he wants to be in Atlanta, Young’s emphasis on also wanting to win has grown stronger.

The Hawks are expected to explore splitting Young and Dejounte Murray up this offseason.

“come join him,” one fan replied, with a popular photoshopped image of Young in a Magic jersey.

“Come on over,” popular social media content creator and noted avid Magic fan Cameron Magruder posted.

Come to orlando,” said another fan.

Future Magic!” exclaimed another.

Young is going into Year 3 of a five-year, $215.1 million contract. He also has a $48.9 million player option for the 2026-27 season. That puts the Hawks on a veritable timeline to decide if they will build around or without him.

Of course, the Hawks trading Young to the Magic would seem as unlikely as any other destination. 

Divisions don’t matter as much in the NBA as they do in other sports. It is still unlikely anyone in the Hawks organization wants to deal with Young as often as NBA division rivals do. It’s also not as though Young was sending out feelers.

Again, a noted fan of the game, he caused a stir with his appearances at multiple playoff games last season. He explained his love of basketball and noted his friendships with players around the NBA.

Banchero isn’t the only player Young has shown love to this postseason, or even in this game.

Hawks' Trae Young reacts to Cavs' Donovan Mitchell

“[Spida] a professional scorer,” Young posted in reference to Cavaliers star Donovan Mitchell, whose second-half takeover keyed Cleveland’s win.

Young has also tipped his cap to Anthony Edwards, who had a similar impact in Game 1 of the Minnesota Timberwolves second-round series against Nikola Jokic and the reigning champion Denver Nuggets.

And he noted Philadelphia 76ers guard and fellow Oklahoma alum Buddy Hield’s showing in their series-deciding loss to the New York Knicks.

But it doesn’t take much to get fans riled up, especially with trade chatter.

Young’s post about taking the “high road” was otherwise ambiguous. But fans still flocked to the comments to let him know he’d be welcome on their favorite squad. The three-time All-Star’s future is still front and center even as his team sits at home this postseason.