Trae Young reacts to rival's shade over Hawks' outlook: 'Funny But Not'

Trae Young addressed a rival's blunt response to the Atlanta Hawks landing the No. 1 pick in the 2024 NBA Draft.
Atlanta Hawks guard Trae Young
Atlanta Hawks guard Trae Young / Paras Griffin/GettyImages

With Dejounte Murray setting the record straight on trade rumors surrounding the Atlanta Hawks, it was fitting for Trae Young to share his thoughts on sentiments surrounding their team this offseason.

It will be pivotal no matter which path they choose. But injured Chicago Bulls point guard Lonzo Ball offered a candid take on the Hawks landing the No. 1 pick in the 2024 NBA Draft.

“I don’t give a f***,” Ball said with a laugh in a clip from an upcoming episode of his “What An Experience!” podcast posted on X on May 23. “I hope they get worse, to be honest.”

Young snapped back accordingly.

“Funny cause I bet this how everybody feel outside of us & (some) people in Atlanta,” Young posted on X on May 23. “#FunnyButNot

This class is viewed as one of the weakest in recent memory with no clear-cut favorite to be the No. 1 pick even after the ping-pong ball had settled. The narrative resurfaced after the Hawks secure the top spot

The Hawks had a 3% chance to land the pick, so they beat the odds. 

They also fell to the Bulls in the opening round of the Play-In Tournament this year, missing the playoffs for the first time in four seasons. But Ball was not a part of that. 

He has been working his way back from a devastating knee injury since January 2022.

Young’s former agency mate with Klutch Sports – Young recently switched to rival CAA – Ball joined the Hawks star on his podcast to discuss his journey back to the court.

It’s taken three surgeries, including a ligament replacement that has had little success in past instances to address an issue that was supposed to sideline him for two months. He has made progress in recent months but remains uncertain to make his return for next season.

Still, he is unlikely to be alone in his thinking. He is a member of a rival team after all.

But there are others who lament the current state of the Hawks while longing for something that might never have been.

“If this upsets you, imagine how bad it would’ve been if Luka would’ve just announced it ‘“I’m only going to Dallas, to be with my mentor Dirk & the owner that flew to Spain 5 times to hang with me & my family!’” Young’s father, Rayford Young posted. “He [Luka] was NEVER COMING.”

“Every city has a station like @929TheGame Not a bad thing. You should hear 98.1 @sportsanimal in Oklahoma when @OU_Football or @okcthunder aren’t winning. People were wanting SGA traded 3 years ago because he was injured & not playing,” Young said in a follow-up post. “Just part of it”

All of it does bring into question the chances a team hungry to compete can do so at a high level with a young player. But there is a shining example the Hawks can look to in this year’s playoffs.

Dallas Mavericks offer blueprint for Hawks offseason

It’s not an understatement to say that rookie first-round pick Dereck Lively II has changed the Mavericks. His length and athleticism immediately stabilized what the Mavericks thought would be a problem. 

They even explored trade options for Hawks center Clint Capela.

The Mavs are thriving this postseason, returning to the Western Conference Finals after missing the playoffs last season. Shoring up their backline defense could go a long way for the Hawks.

A similar path back to the Eastern Conference Finals exists, and French-born Alexandre Sarr could be a souped-up version of Lively. The Hawks have also shown interest in Zaccharie Risacher and have been linked to UConn’s Donovan Clingan at No. 1.