Atlanta Hawks: Hawks look to be out of chase for Dwight Howard

The Hawks no longer appear to be in the Dwight Howard sweepstakes.

Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports reports that it’s now a two-team race for Howard between the Nets and the Lakers with Brooklyn in the lead. Center Brook Lopez would be the centerpiece of a deal with the Nets while the Lakers would send center Andrew Bynum to Orlando.

Update: Wojnarowski reports that in the latest proposal the Magic would send Howard, Jason Richardson and Earl Clark to the Nets in exchange for Lopez, Damion James, Shelden Williams, Luke Walton and up to four first-round draft picks.

The Hawks had been in discussions with Orlando regarding Howard since before the draft. They can offer the Magic better players than New Jersey in exchange for Howard, including Al Horford and Jeff Teague. The Hawks also picked up an extra first-round draft pick as part of the trade that sent Joe Johnson to the Nets.

But Atlanta has been reluctant to make such a deal because Howard has given no indication he’s willing to commit to the Hawks (or any team other than Brooklyn) beyond next season. Without that assurance, Atlanta is unwilling to trade major pieces and draft picks and also take back one or more of Orlando’s onerous contracts with the risk that Howard would bolt in free agency after one season.

According to multiple reports, the Nets are trying to complete a complicated trade for Howard that could include two other teams and as many as 14 players. Howard, the former Southwest Atlanta Christian Academy star, made it more difficult for Orlando to trade him when he exercised his 2012-13 contract option at the last trade deadline.

Howard opted in after he had requested a trade in December, when the Hawks were among the teams engaged in serious trade discussions with Orlando’s since-fired GM Otis Smith. Howard renewed his trade request in April and last week told Yahoo that if he’s sent to any team other than Brooklyn he would play out his contract and explore free agency next season.

Brian K. Schmitz of the Orlando Sentinel reported that the Magic are in “no hurry” to trade Howard. But other reports have indicated the Magic are ready to trade Howard as soon as possible and begin rebuilding after months of drama surrounding their franchise player.

After shedding Johnson’s contract, the Hawks are in position to offer Howard a maximum free agent deal next summer. But the team that has Howard under contract to end the 2012-13 season will hold his “Bird Rights” and be able to offer a contract that’s worth about $25 million more than any other team.

Michael Cunningham, Hawks beat

150 comments Add your comment

theking21

July 9th, 2012
1:38 pm

Khao$

July 9th, 2012
1:46 pm

I can’t be mad with the Hawks for not wanted to break the bank (ie get rid of Horford, Teague, take on Richardson’s bad contract) and not having assurances that Dwight would stay (not to mention Josh). The team would be gutted with nothing to build off of.

At this point, I think the best move to make (given Dwight’s position that its Nets or bust) is to trade Josh for picks or good pieces. Other than Chris Paul (who has hinted towards wanting to stay in LA), next year’s FA class isn’t all that robust either.

The next few years could bring about some unwatchable basketball. However, if it leads to constructing a sound, championship contender, so be it.

HawkKingBibby

July 9th, 2012
1:47 pm

Give up Horford but not Horford and Teague. Roll the dice because Horford is a nice player but he is NOT a franchise player.

VD

July 9th, 2012
1:48 pm

Build around Teague and Horford as a 4. get a great defensive center, a great shooter and a play maker wing man.,

Harry Hawk

July 9th, 2012
1:49 pm

Yep. Gotta move Josh. He won’t be here after this season.

Jesse

July 9th, 2012
1:51 pm

It’s a shame the NBA is turning into this kind of league where players dictate everything. It’s about to be an 8 team league with no one else having a chance.

HawkKingBibby

July 9th, 2012
1:53 pm

8? maybe 4 or 5 tops. sadly…..

garcia

July 9th, 2012
1:56 pm

Apparently, the NBA formula is to have a handful of serious teams and a bunch of New Jersey Generals.

The Atlanta Generals…..nice.

BC

July 9th, 2012
2:04 pm

Trade Josh for a legit wing. Forget Dwight. Why do you want players that would be unhappy here?

Slimjr

July 9th, 2012
2:09 pm

Bye Josh..Its been a good run with ya!

Slimjr

July 9th, 2012
2:10 pm

The Dallas Hawks.. No thanks…

vava74

July 9th, 2012
2:12 pm

Buddy G:

“What’s a better back court?

Joe Teague Kirk

Teague Morrow Harris

Pretty close call, right?”

Are you out of your f***ing mind?

It’s not even close by a mile.

Devin is a decent player who MIGHT get back on track but is spiralling down fast.

He was never a good defender and only an half decent passing PG.

Sure, he had a breakout season in which he looked like star material and a huge mistake by the Mavs, but either due to injury or other factors, the harsh reality is that he is going down and it would be a major surprise if he managed to turn his career around.

Right now, he is a 30 year old injury prone PG with significant shortcomings.

Morrow is a streaky jump shooter which may prove to be useful but will probably never be more than a fringe player, capable of, in good years and with luck, be a rotational player on a playoff team.

My projection for him is that he will average 7 to 9 ppg on just over .400 shooting, whilst bringing zero defense.

If could not find the “space” to blossom with the Nets, bad as they were last year, what makes you think he will blossom here where the PG play of Teague is substantially inferior to Deron on the play making department?

vava74

July 9th, 2012
2:15 pm

Buddy G,

The so called “ball stopper JJ” was a legit All-Star and a legit two way player who gave us defensive consistency on the perimeter, frequently called to exert vast amounts of energy chasing opposing PGs.

Did he have shortcomings? Did he trust too much in his ISO capabilities? Beyond its actual production?

Sure, but you should blame the lame excuses of head-coaches that we had/have.

Woody and LD are 90% responsible for all bad things that you can point on JJ.

BravesFan79

July 9th, 2012
2:16 pm

The Hawks have a very solid team as currently constructed, and could be one of the better “small ball” teams in the NBA with the right coach like a Don Nelson. We have a All Star Center in Horford, a All Star power forward in Smith. One of the best shooters in the NBA in Anthony Morrow, and one of the best young pt guards in Teague. I see no reason why the Hawks wont be a 4-6 seed in the playoffs next year.

vava74

July 9th, 2012
2:17 pm

(bad things ON court)

Outside the court, you can blame ASG for not offering him a smaller contract or for not using him on a S&T.

Astro Joe

July 9th, 2012
2:18 pm

Ra’mon, the next time you talk to Josh, please ask him if he stays in touch with Calvin Murphy and if he has recommended Murphy to some of the Hawks young guards. Thanks.

gLENN

July 9th, 2012
2:18 pm

Surprised so many rule out the Hawks for CP III . I think if he liked the direction the Hawks were taking & was offered the coin he would sign . He likes the city & is from the region . I believe both will happen. Anyone outside the Nets would be silly to offer up anything for DH . Guy said he would only sign long term with the Nets . The Hawks after this year have extreme flexibility . Skies the limit .

I would love for us to sign Josh , bring in CPIII and move Teague . We would still have money for building the roster . Those expiring contracts are gold .

Slimjr

July 9th, 2012
2:18 pm

FTPB

Legit? Or Not? That is today’s question?

“The key word in that sentence is LEGIT.

Horford was named to the All-Star team twice . . but a LEGIT All-Star is one who can take over a game on a routine basis. LEGIT All-Star status for Josh and Al would be for them to average an EFFICIENT 20 ppg and 10 rebs. I’m talking about LaMarcus Aldridge legit type shooting and point totals . . or Blake Griffin scoring and rebounding numbers.

We just lost our #1 option to close a game. Whether people think he was good or not in closing a game, the fact was that he did close games. That duty now goes to Al and Josh. A situation that they haven’t normally been in. So with them being the go-to guys on a nightly basis, we’ll see if they can put up LEGIT All-Star numbers.”

Allstar Al has already proven he can’t take over a game on a the nightly. Just not equipped..Sorry..

LEGIT AllStar??? Hmmmmm

Josh is a whole other story..He is on the cusp! Tweak that jumper of his and Bingo!

We will miss Josh….

Ticktokticktok

July 9th, 2012
2:20 pm

Have you seen what smoking Bath Salts will do to ya? 4th seed?? Really…

MikeH

July 9th, 2012
2:21 pm

I see why the Hawks have done what they have done but ASG better find some investors as attendance will take another hit if we do not start out of the gates fast…I love Josh, Teague, and Horford but I am not sure where we get enough points to win a basketball game against a good team…I am hoping that Ferry can somehow bring in a legit SF here that is young enough and talented enough to make a real difference…Not R. Lewis or some old washed up guy looking for one more check…I am afraid that Ferry needs to pull a trade in order to solidify this spot….R. Gay or maybe OJ Mayo…Someone with starting skills

Slimjr

July 9th, 2012
2:22 pm

i_am_soulstar

July 9th, 2012
2:23 pm

ccarking,

Lol, I’m a troll now? I was simply saying that I saw pics of Joe at the wedding, but that I’m sure you could find them on the web yourself, rather than me finding them and posting a link. I’m not sure how those are middle school antics, and I wasn’t attempting to be combative, just making a statement, right or wrong.

This is a blog, so your comments may be actually be COMMENTED ON! No need for the monologue, Sensitive Susan.

aytunstoppable

July 9th, 2012
2:23 pm

You are fooling urself if you think this hawks team is better than the one alst year braves fan. Get real. We will make the playoffs jsut because of Josh and Horford. But other than that this team is bad and I’ve been a fan of years. now I have to suffer through 35-40 wins instead of the assured 45-50 when joe was here. Ugh I rather have user be a good top 5 rteam and get ousted early then have a team that definitely can’t get out the 1st round like we are now. I miss joe already. no i got to watch a year of really not fun basketball. right no hawks future is very bleak compared to having joe here.

steven a smith

July 9th, 2012
2:25 pm

Slimjr

July 9th, 2012
2:10 pm

The Dallas Hawks.. No thanks…

At least these teams will be in a position to start over. The worst place to be in the NBA is 42-40 with no lottery pick. At least they will more than likely get into the lottery within 2 years.

BravesFan79

July 9th, 2012
2:26 pm

Will everyone stop talking about how much “financial flexability” we have as if its the best thing in the world. Other teams with “financial flexability” that are waiting on their magical unicorn to sign include the Bobcats, Mavericks, Portland, and just about every other team not named Miami, NY, or LA.

NORRIS CHUCK

July 9th, 2012
2:26 pm

What happened to the CBA aka Corrupted Ballers Alliance? All these “Super Teams” are killing the game!

i_am_soulstar

July 9th, 2012
2:27 pm

The Hawks could seriously just as do as well the recent seasons with a few free agents. We’d be like the Pacers last year (no real star). But I’d rather see this team contend, and attract long-term free agents, than hit the lottery hoping for the right ping pong ball to drop. Like some have pointed out, that doesn’t always work out.

Teams like the Timberwolves, Warriors, Kings, Bobcats, etc. haven’t been in the playoffs in forever. No guarantee that it plays out differently for us.

MikeH

July 9th, 2012
2:28 pm

Please…having Joe here guaranteed us nothing….except we were paying a boat load for his services which were not up to par with his contributions….I have no problem taking some steps back but I do want to be competive and Ferry much address the loss somehow….Again, not with some T. McGrady or R. Lewis retread…A real starting talent…

steven a smith

July 9th, 2012
2:28 pm

1st Great Idea of the day,

BC

July 9th, 2012
2:04 pm

Trade Josh for a legit wing. Forget Dwight. Why do you want players that would be unhappy here?

Josh could net us a player and a draft pick.

Slimjr

July 9th, 2012
2:28 pm

“At least these teams will be in a position to start over. The worst place to be in the NBA is 42-40 with no lottery pick. At least they will more than likely get into the lottery within 2 years”

Points Taken Sir..

Its going to be hard to swallow though? While most teams in the East load up now..

Astro Joe

July 9th, 2012
2:31 pm

I think the odds are pretty high that Pat Riley has already reached out to Jason Collins’ agent. Time to bring in the D12-Kryptonite.

BravesFan79

July 9th, 2012
2:32 pm

Yes of course the Hawks could still be a 4-6 seed next year! Whos better in the east besides Miami and Chicago (maybe NJ and NY) The Pacers lost Hibbert, the 76ers lost Brand, Orlando is loosing Dwight. After those 4 teams, who else might be better on paper than the Hawks? A 5 or 6 seed is very realistic.
And i dont know why everyones selling Morrow short, he was on a crappy team with no inside presence, meaning he will get better looks with the Hawks. In fact just last season he scored 42 against the T-Wolves while nailing 8 3pointers. Will he provide the same defense or low block scoring as Joe? No. But hes a better shooter with length.

Jbone

July 9th, 2012
2:32 pm

@HawkKingBibby…..Are you crazy. Horford is an all star center and hes even playing out of position. You dont trade him for anything. He is the only leader the hawks have. Make it through season this season with what we have (maybe add Rashad Lewis) and go after Dwight in free agency. Re-sign Josh, move Al to pf, his natural position, and watch what happens. With a lightning quick Teague running point, sharp shooting Jenkins at the 2 in his 2nd year, and a front line of Josh, Al, and Dwight, that hawks team would dominate anyone (current champs included.)

steven a smith

July 9th, 2012
2:34 pm

Rashard Lewis-Mickael Pietrus-OR–O. J. Mayo would be a nice fit for this team. Rashard has 3 good years remaining…Do not forget JR Smith. He would be a nice 6th man, ala James Harden.

I would lock Smith and Mayo up for 3–4 years around Mid-level money for each. There are no “Great Wings” available right now.

Sautee

July 9th, 2012
2:35 pm

“Allstar Al has already proven he can’t take over a game on a the nightly. Just not equipped..Sorry.. ” – slimjr

slim, that’s a straw man statement. When has Horford ever even been ASKED to “take over a game on a nightly basis”.

To be clear, I don’t think he’s that kind of player, and neither do you, so what are you proving by saying he “already proven” that he can’t do what he has never 1) been asked to do, and 2) given a chance to do? It’s a straight out straw man argument, and some of us see through it.

Man, you’re just plain hatin’. I thought you were better than that.

Eb

July 9th, 2012
2:35 pm

Dear Mr. Ferry,

Welcome to Atlanta. If you want to be here for awhile, your plan must include bringing in a TRUE Superstar. This town has endured years of Joe Johnson pretending to be a superstar and will not settle for another no-name rebuild. Its been a long time since the Dominique trade and the ATL is hungry for a similar caliber name to rally around. Don’t be fooled, this is the only way it will work in this town. Building another team of average to above average players will guarantee continuation of lackluster attendance and fan support. Need proof- look how Vick polarized this town and filled the dome before eventually hanging himself. Matt Ryan has been exposed as an average QB and watch attendance plummet this year. Braves did well under Smoltz, Glavine, Maddux, Sheffield, etc. but lost fan interest when they elected to sign superstars beyond their prime and no-name players.

This town is desperate for a Champion and has a very jaded history. Our only title came 17 years ago with the Braves who are better known for the titles they didn’t win. Falcons went to one Superbowl in 45 years and were blown out following the embarrassing arrest of Eugene Robinson. Hawks have never been to even the ECF in 44 years. We’ve had 2 NHL teams who are now gone and the last team- Thrashers- never won a single playoff game. Expand to NCAA and see UGA’s last football title coming 30+ years ago and GT’s coming 20+ years ago. GT is better known for basketball but they never won it all and can’t even make the NCAA tourney anymore.

Thought you’d want to know what you’re up against here. Best of luck!

Eb

steven a smith

July 9th, 2012
2:37 pm

Sautee

July 9th, 2012
2:35 pm

“Allstar Al has already proven he can’t take over a game on a the nightly. Just not equipped..Sorry.. ” – slimjr

First time i have ever agreed with this guy…AL Horford is not even the best player on his Domminican
Republic Basketball team. Dude looked small and lost in the game against NIGERIA.

Spud Webb

July 9th, 2012
2:37 pm

We should be about as good. I would say that Horford in the line up all season and Joe out should be a wash. We actually played well last season in the games that Joe was out. JJ was actually a cancer on the team given his undeserved contract. Regarding Howard, I would like him to be here, but I am ok that he won’t. He is full of drama and might be detriment to team chemistry. I am ok with the Hawks team for now. There are never any guarantees, but you have to credit our new GM for trying. The old formula wasn’t working. We now have a chance.

steve brown

July 9th, 2012
2:39 pm

Based on Josh Smith’s latest comments I bet Ferry is on the phones working to trade him now!

i_am_soulstar

July 9th, 2012
2:40 pm

Oh yeah, Morrow’s lights out. I’ve coveted that guy for years, but as a 1st or 2nd option off the bench. But with the way the team’s currently constructed, he may just have to start.

I really don’t like the idea of Teague/Harris starting in the backcourt. Shooting guards would kill us, but I guess I’m not really a proponent of small-ball.

Hopefully we get a real starting caliber 2-guard to fill the void.

steven a smith

July 9th, 2012
2:40 pm

Eb

July 9th, 2012
2:35 pm

Dear Mr. Ferry

I am sure that you see the Glass as “Half Empty.” Sounds like you need some Tony Robbins motivational DVDs Bro!

doc

July 9th, 2012
2:41 pm

who would haver ever thought, shels could be bait to get d12. yup, billy knight pretty smart.

steve brown

July 9th, 2012
2:42 pm

Josh just had the best season I believe he will ever have (we all know the reasons). Trade him now.

i_am_soulstar

July 9th, 2012
2:43 pm

We’ll have a hell of a backcourt though (starters and bench) if we can get a Courtney Lee/O.J. Mayo to start.

FRESH

July 9th, 2012
2:43 pm

Cap space is overrated. Look what happened to Dallas and who was last star free agent to come to Atlanta without being traded. Mutombo maybe

Rod from College Park

July 9th, 2012
2:45 pm

“LOL Brooks 0-for-8 vs. summer league competition, Brooklyn getting destroyed by Orlando last I checked. Yeah, that was the key, get another ball-stopping wannabe Kobe in here. NBA Finals for sure.”

Marvin Williams was a summer league MVP. Means nothing. Did you see what Brooks did against Joe Johnson last year in games that count?

Ticktokticktok

July 9th, 2012
2:45 pm

Amo can shoot no doubt! But he couldn’t guard a Foot from a Shoe.

Eb

July 9th, 2012
2:46 pm

If Sheldon Williams goes to Orlando in the Howard trade, it would make his 7th different team in 5 years since being traded from the Hawks. Billy Knight couldn’t have swung and missed any bigger with this 5th overall pick from the 2006 draft.

aytunstoppable

July 9th, 2012
2:48 pm

Goodness some of u r stupid. Since when does trading Joe Johnson make us better. it amde us worse stop being so dumb. I’m all right with the trade but don’t be stupid and think the team is better now. no its not. No one we got in either of those trades can replace 18 points a game, close the game, and command a duble team. Nobody game plans for Josh or Al. they game planned for Joe though so stop being so damn dumb.

And I’m glad we aren’t getting D12 let that cry baby biatch go somewhere else. I rather have and teague than a center that can’t do anything because he has no Guard to help him. Thats why our posistion would be if we did that trade. Centers can’t do jack with out a good back court and all we have is teague.

steven a smith

July 9th, 2012
2:49 pm

PG-Harris/Teague/Pargo
SG-Pietrus/Jenkins/Morrow/Stevenson
SF-Josh/Randolph
PF-Horford/Ivan/Mike Scott(probably won’t make the team)
C–Petro/Zsa Zsa/Jordan Williams