Taking a look at potential areas of weakness on the roster.
Peachtree Hoops’ staff continues an offseason roundtable series with an eye on what be in store for the Atlanta Hawks in 2022-23. Today, we examine potential areas of weakness on the roster.
Which area of the roster is the biggest concern for the Hawks heading into 2022-23?
Zach Hood: The wing depth feels a bit thin. Dejounte Murray should be able to handle a chunk of the point guard minutes when Trae Young needs a blow, but the Hawks are a bit thin on the wing. Kevin Huerter and Delon Wright both are out of the equation, so the durability of guys like De’Andre Hunter and Bogdan Bogdanovic, which has been consistent issue in each case, is going to be crucial. If Hunter and Bogdanovic continue to battle injuries this season, Atlanta could be in rough shape on the wing. Justin Holiday is a quality player, but if either of those guys go down, he may be in store for major minutes.
Malik Brown: I’d say the backcourt. Dejounte Murray was obviously a major upgrade, but after him and Trae, there’s not much depth you can count on. It’s not for certain how many minutes Aaron Holiday will see, and there will be a big question mark on Bogdan Bogdanovic’s health through the season. If Young or Murray were to miss significant time, the Hawks could be in some trouble.
Graham Chapple: I’m concerned for the Hawks’ point guard depth because I don’t fully trust Nate McMillan to stagger Trae Young/Dejounte Murray and I think we’re going to see full bench lineups, and I don’t like the Hawks’ options handling the ball with Young/Murray on the bench. The Hawks lost a lot with Delon Wright leaving in free agency, but if McMillan can stagger Young/Murray then I’m a little less worried overall.
Wes Morton: I’ll echo everyone and say guard options off the bench. McMillan was among the league leaders in deploying full bench units, and with Murray starting at the 2, he’ll need to adjust his usual rotation to have 48 minutes of at least Young or Murray on the court. Kevin Huerter spelled a lot of minutes with the bench units initiating offense over the past 4 seasons, and beyond Bogdanovic there’s really no one else reliable to act in that role.
Glen Willis: For me, it’s the lack of guard depth. In my view, they are short a guard that could function in the role Delon Wright did last season… a player who can provide minutes at point guard but doesn’t have to do so as to provide value. I think this will impact their ability to put a complimentary guard next to Trae Young or Dejounte Murray when the other is off of the court. And it contributes to a general shortage of perimeter shooting.
Rashad Milligan: Let me be original here and say: Backup point guard. Who is the backup point guard? It’s the same question we’ve asked since Jeremy Lin left during Trae Young’s rookie season. Lou Williams had a couple of solid months, Brandon Goodwin had a moment and Delon Wright started to come on in the postseason before bolting to Washington for more money. After killing last year’s Summer League and the G League last season, it looked like Sharife Cooper was potentially next in line…until this past Summer League, where he played while he was hurt.
Also, De’Andre Hunter’s durability concerns me. No more Cam Reddish and Kevin Huerter to cover when he goes down. So quality wing depth, all due respect to NBA veteran Justin Holiday.