Thursday, 25 Apr 2024

Why the Hawks’ Trade of John Collins Sets them up for Success

NBA basketball fans are eagerly anticipating the return of the sport on October 24th. As we patiently count down the days, it’s only natural for us to discuss the intriguing storylines leading up to the 2023-24 NBA season. In this article, we’ll delve into why the Atlanta Hawks won’t regret trading big man John Collins and how this decision could actually benefit the team.

Collins was undoubtedly a beloved figure in Atlanta during his six-year tenure with the Hawks. However, he had also become a constant subject of trade rumors in recent years. The Hawks ultimately made the decision to part ways with Collins last summer, sending him off to Utah.

While Collins will be missed for his personality and presence, his on-court performance had started to decline. His production steadily dropped since his standout season in 2019-20 when he averaged 21 points and 10 rebounds as a power forward. By the last season, Collins had become a secondary player, averaging just 13 points and six rebounds per game, and his three-point shooting had suffered. This decline in his performance led to a decrease in his market value.

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Now, the Hawks face the question of whether they have a young player who can fill the void left by Collins. The immediate answer may seem like a “no,” but a lot depends on the development of Onyeka Okongwu. As the 6th overall pick in the 2020 draft, Okongwu has shown promising progress, with increased minutes and an elevated role in the rotation. There are instances where he has even flirted with achieving a double-double, something Collins excelled at during his peak with the Hawks.

Currently, the team lacks a better option at power forward. Interestingly, the Hawks often operated more smoothly, particularly on offense, when they went small last season. With Collins gone, the team will have the opportunity to explore the potential of Jalen Johnson and AJ Griffin, who can now fill the minutes left vacant by Collins’ departure.

The big question for Coach Quin Snyder is whether he can effectively utilize Okongwu and center Clint Capela on the court together for extended periods. Neither player brings strong shooting skills to the table, limiting their ability to stretch the floor. Could Atlanta potentially explore the idea of trading Capela and shifting Okongwu, a 6-foot-9 player, to the center position?

In summary, the Hawks’ decision to trade John Collins opens up new possibilities for the team. While Collins will be missed, his declining performance and market value made the trade a rational move. The development of Onyeka Okongwu and the chance to experiment with different lineups could prove beneficial for the Hawks in the long run. It will be fascinating to see how the team adapts and evolves heading into the upcoming NBA season.

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Q: What prompted the Hawks to trade John Collins?
A: While John Collins was a beloved figure, his on-court performance had declined in recent seasons. The Hawks decided to make the trade to maximize the team’s potential and explore new possibilities.

Q: Who could potentially fill the void left by John Collins?
A: Onyeka Okongwu, the 6th overall pick in the 2020 draft, has shown promising progress and could step up as the team’s power forward. The Hawks will also have the opportunity to evaluate young players like Jalen Johnson and AJ Griffin.

Q: Can Okongwu and Clint Capela play together effectively?
A: The challenge lies in the fact that neither player brings strong shooting skills to the table. Coach Quin Snyder will need to find a balance between utilizing both players’ strengths and maintaining floor spacing.


In this article, we explored the Atlanta Hawks’ decision to trade John Collins and how it sets them up for success. While Collins was a fan-favorite, his declining performance and market value made the trade a logical move. The team now has the opportunity to develop young players like Onyeka Okongwu and explore different lineup options. As the NBA season approaches, it will be fascinating to see how the Hawks adapt and thrive. Make sure to visit for more NBA insights and updates.