3 Roster Moves For Atlanta Hawks To Consider Given Recent Struggles

Atlanta Hawks, NBA
NBA Analysis Network

Making a very impressive and improbable run to the Eastern Conference Finals last season put the Atlanta Hawks on everybody’s radar, but this team has not looked like the championship contender early on this year like they did several months back. 

The Hawks are currently 4-6 and while this is not terrible, they currently have a lot of things to figure out, especially on the defensive end of the floor. With three straight road games against the likes of the Warriors, Jazz and Nuggets though, Atlanta definitely has their work cut out for them over the next few weeks. 

To begin the season, the Hawks currently rank 27th in the league in net defensive rating and are surrendering about 110.0 points per game to their opponents, which ranks them 23rd in the league. Last season, this Hawks team ranked 21st in the league in net defensive rating and ranked 12th in the league in opponent’s points per game. 

Not much has changed with Atlanta’s roster this season, but one big difference on defense for them is the fact that Clint Capela’s overall production has decreased. Capela averaged 30.1 minutes per game last season and not only had 14.3 rebounds per game, but about 2.0 blocks per game as well. 

LATEST NBA NEWS & TRADE RUMORS: This Hawks-Kings Trade Is Focused On Buddy Hield To Atlanta

Through 10 games this year, Capela is averaging 28.4 minutes per game and is only averaging 11.4 rebounds per game, 1.2 blocks per game. John Collins’ defensive numbers are also down, even though he is rebounding the ball at a higher efficiency this season. 

It is easy to point the finger and say things have not been the same defensively for this team, but they have had their struggles on offense as well. Like many teams in the league, their free-throw attempts per game are down compared to that of last season and their timing seems to be off a little bit. 

“We’ve been playing kind of a lot more half-court this year and a lot more half-court pace and slower pace, and I think for us, with the guys we’ve got, the shooters we have and the guys who can make plays in transition, I think the faster we play, the better we can be,” Trae Young said ahead of their game against the Suns on Saturday. 

Head coach Nate McMillan also talked about the team’s start and offered a similar response to that of his All-Star point guard. “As I said to Trae, Trae establishes our tempo,” McMillan said. “And I think he needs to play a little faster and be aggressive, be himself. So I just think that he is the guy that establishes the tempo that we want to play at, that is certainly up to him, and if he doesn’t have anything early, we want him to get us organized and play late.”

LATEST NBA NEWS & TRADE RUMORS: This Hawks-Kings Trade Is Focused On Buddy Hield To Atlanta

While they have not begun the season the way they had hoped, it is definitely not time to start worrying about Atlanta. This team knows what it takes to win and with a lot of depth, they are going to be a team that turns it on at some point, but when will this point come this season? 

With the Eastern Conference being better than it was a season ago, the margin for error is very slim, which is why the Hawks could consider making some roster moves in the near future. 

About Brett Siegel 1574 Articles
Brett Siegel joined NBA Analysis Network as an NBA Insider and Journalist in 2020 after previously working with Louisville Basketball and FanSided covering the NBA. For all up-to-date NBA news, stats and rumors, and any inquiries, be sure to follow him on Twitter @BrettSiegelNBA.