Phoenix–After striking out in their efforts to acquire point guards Devin Harris and Raymond Felton, the Hawks agreed to terms with the Wizards on a trade for veteran Kirk Hinrich and athletic big man Hilton Armstrong, the team announced tonight.
As part of the deal, the Hawks sent Mike Bibby, rookie Jordan Crawford, swingman Mo Evans and their 2011 first-round draft pick to the Wizards.
Bibby, Crawford and Evans were informed of the trade prior to the team’s game against Phoenix tonight. Jeff Teague replaced Bibby in the starting lineup.
Hawks coach Larry Drew declined to comment on the trade before the game because it wasn’t yet official.
The Bulls selected Hinrich, 30, with the seventh overall pick out of Kansas in the 2003 draft. The Bulls traded him to Washington last summer along with Kevin Seraphin.
The Hawks expect Hinrich to shore up their weak perimeter defense, which has put stress on the team defense as players constantly scramble to help against dribble penetration. Like Bibby, Hinrich is a good spot-up shooter but is a better playmaker off the dribble and should help Atlanta’s fast break.
The Hawks also hope Hinrich (6-4, 190), who’s earned a reputation as a hard-nosed player, will provide toughness and leadership. He and Marvin Williams went at it during a game in Chicago last season, with both earning technical fouls.
“I’ve always been a super fan of Kirk,” Williams said. “Watching him at Kansas, he just competes, man. In college, coach [Roy] Williams would always make reference to Kirk Hinrich and say he has that toughness and that attitude.”
Armstrong (6-11, 235 pounds) is limited offensively and doesn’t rebound well for his size. But he’s an athletic leaper who could find a role helping the Hawks protect the rim, which also is a weakness (especially when Josh Smith is not in the game).
“I think in the paint he can block some shots and be able to add that inside presence and help us out down there a little bit,” Smith said.
The trade is another move for the Hawks that could help them now at the expense of future flexibility and development of young players.
Both Armstrong and Evans’ contracts expire after the season. Hinrich is scheduled to make $8 million next season compared to salaries of $6.2 million for Bibby and $1.1 million for Crawford . That would add roughly $700,000 to Atlanta’s estimated $65 million in committed salaries for 2011-12.
The Hawks also had to part with the draft pick and Crawford, whom they acquired in a draft night trade in 2010 after the Nets selected him No. 27 overall. The shooting guard had played sparingly this season, appearing in just 16 of 56 games.
Finally, the trade is the latest indication that the Hawks don’t intend to give Teague a larger role. Teague, the No. 19 overall pick in the 2009 draft, had played in 46 of 56 games for an average of 11.6 minutes entering the game tonight.
The Hawks acquired Hinrich after a wide search for a trading partner in an urgent attempt to acquire a point guard.
A league source with knowledge of Atlanta’s inquiries said the team tried to swing a trade for Harris before the Nets sent him to Utah in a deal that got them All-Star Deron Williams. The source said the Hawks also were rebuffed when they inquired about point guard Raymond Felton after New York traded him to the Nuggets as part of the Carmelo Anthony trade.
The Hawks also had interest in Cleveland point guard Ramon Sessions, according to the source.
Michael Cunningham, Hawks beat