Over the past couple of seasons, and especially this past summer, Atlanta Hawks‘ forward Josh Smith has been at the forefront of many trade rumors. He is one of the best all-around players in the game today, but the Hawks have been searching for a new direction, and could look to add depth with any sort of trade involving Smith. They traded Joe Johnson to the Brooklyn Nets prior to this season, and it appears Smith has had enough of getting the run around in Atlanta.
Though neither he nor his agent have officially demanded a trade from the team, they remain unhappy with the situation, and Smith will likely not return when he becomes a free agent this summer. The Hawks need to take advantage of this situation and get value from Smith before it is too late. There is always the sign-and-trade option, but if teams know he is unhappy, they will be unwilling to meet Atlanta’s demands this summer.
Atlanta could be in more of a position of power with Smith until the trade deadline. Smith’s agent Wallace Prather had a meeting with Hawks GM Danny Ferry recently.
“As far as moving forward and whatever changes will be made, that’s more so management’s job to field those calls and make the decisions they feel like are best to move forward, “I want to be clear that I’m not pushing a trade,” Prather said. “This is not a trade request or anything, but there are frustrations in Atlanta.”
Our own NBA writer Tony Ramsey suggested the Hawks should trade Smith to the Los Angeles Lakers for F/C Pau Gasol. I love this idea for both teams. Gasol is unhappy in Mike D’Antoni’s system and would fit perfectly in the center role for the Hawks. They would be getting a dominant offensive post presence to play alongside All Star Al Horford, and the Lakers would be getting an athletic All Star forward who likes to run and can play in the up-tempo offense.
It makes sense on both a system level and a financial level. Get this done.