1-sentence lessons the Atlanta Hawks can learn from each 2024 playoff team

The Atlanta Hawks fell short of their playoff goals this season, but they can still learn a valuable lesson from each team that made it.
Atlanta Hawks general manager Landry Fields
Atlanta Hawks general manager Landry Fields / Anadolu/GettyImages

The Atlanta Hawks set out to make the playoffs this past season. They fell short of their goal, ending the campaign with a loss in the first round of the Play-In Tournament.

That marked their first time missing the postseason since 2019-20. It also gives Head Coach Quin Snyder a 46-57 record in his year-plus at the helm. They are 61-72 with General Manager Landry Fields running the operation.

With so much potentially at stake this offseason, the Hawks have a lot of ground to make up on the top teams in the league.

Here is one lesson the Hawks can learn from each playoff team.

1 lesson the Atlanta Hawks can learn from each 2024 playoff team

1) Milwaukee Bucks: Their trade for Damian Lillard could be a Dejounte Murray analog, but really shows change for the sake of change is dangerous with the man he replaced – Jrue Holiday – hoisting another Larry O’Brien Trophy.

2) New Orleans Pelicans: The Pelicans are similar to the Hawks in that they’ve hitched their wagon to a polarizing star player with significant questions about how great their impact is but New Orleans has not left as much room for doubt about where they stand on Zion Williamson as the Hawks have for Trae Young.

3) Phoenix Suns: The only takeaway from this season from the Suns is that throwing money and talent at a situation are not the automatic solutions they can often be presented as in the rumor mill.

4) Los Angeles Lakers: The real lesson from the Lakers came from their championship run in 2020 and is one the Hawks are learning: blowing up your most successful team does not make sense.

5) Miami Heat: The Heat have proven time and again that their system is greater than the sum of their roster’s parts while also feeling the brunt of not building enough beyond that rock-solid foundation.

6) Los Angeles Clippers: The Clippers proved the same thing the Suns did and have been proving it for several years now.

7) Orlando Magic: They showed that young talent can make a significant impact, similar to the Hawks’ run in 2020-21.

8) Philadelphia 76ers: The Philadelphia 76ers are proof that it can be hard to build a true title contender even with one of the best players in the world.

9) Oklahoma City Thunder: Another proof of concept that young players can win, though 27-year-old veteran Shai Gilgeous-Alexander playing at a near MVP-level certainly helped bring it all together.

10) Cleveland Cavaliers: This could go two ways – they showed you can build a formidable roster around two ball-dominant guards but also that such a configuration has limitations.

11) New York Knicks: A more modern version of the Heat’s approach, the Knicks’ gritty identity helped them finish higher than many expected during the regular season.

12) Denver Nuggets: The Nuggets showed the perils of resting on your laurels when coming off a successful season (with a hint of breaking up their championship roster).

13) Indiana Pacers: The league’s No. 1 offense propped up its No. 24-ranked defense, an issue that came to bear in the postseason.

14) Minnesota Timberwolves: The Timberwolves got tremendous mileage out of their frontcourt odd couple showing what conviction can do, with Karl-Anthony Towns’ playoff performance one of the biggest factors in the conversation resurfacing.

15) Dallas Mavericks: This is the prime example of finding the right fit, with Dallas building around two stars that seemed like poor fits until the pieces around them changed.

16) Boston Celtics: The poster child for developing a plan, putting your infrastructure in place and making tweaks around that to build a title team.