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NBA Speed Dating: Atlanta Hawks

Tyrese Haliburton is a young bachelor, in terms of NBA employment. A slew of potential suitors are lining up nicely for him in the NBA draft lottery. His partner will be determined on draft day, November 18, 2020. For now, we’ll speed date around the NBA teams finding the best fit for our beloved point guard, and which team he could end up with, for years to come. So spritz that cologne, floss those teeth, and work on your pick up lines. It’s speed-dating time.

I sat down with Zach Hood of Peachtree Hoops to discuss.

Dylan- Let’s address the elephant in the room the Hawks already have a very good young point guard. Trae Young appears to be the face of the Atlanta Hawks going forward. To be fair, Haliburton will be a pass first point guard entering the league, and Young does plenty of shooting. Do you think these two could co-exist in the same back court?

Zach- I think at 6 overall you have to draft the best player, regardless of position, unless you have two players at different positions very close and one fits better. Haliburton’s size is enough to make me feel comfortable enough with the fit, but he won’t be my best player available at No. 6.

I think they could definitely co-exist as both are High IQ players. Not sold that Haliburton is a starter either, so it’s possible he’d be in a spot to play without Young a lot as well given his passing, especially early in his career when he’ll likely be a negative overall like most young NBA players.

Dylan- The Hawks are YOUNG. They have one of the most exciting young cores in the NBA, Trae Young seems to have the PG slot for quite some time, and Collins and Capela are a formidable young front court. The question marks seem to be at the wings. While Tyrese isn’t your typical 3-D guy, could you see him getting minutes over Kevin Huerter, Cam Reddish, or De’Andre Hunter in his rookie campaign? And what kind of player do the Hawks need to compliment Young, Collins, and Capela.

Zach- I wouldn’t word it that way. Whoever the Hawks draft at No. 6 will play, but so will the other young guys. I think the Hawks need someone a little more defensive minded in the backcourt, maybe someone like Tyrese Maxey out of Kentucky.

Dylan- Haliburton is a natural leader, and you’ll hear his name 10 years from now being “a great guy to have in the locker room” Most people are curious about Haliburton’s on court comparison due to his unique skill set, but give me some all-time Atlanta Hawk glue guys, and maybe the current veteran on the team that players look up to.

Zach- The longest tenured Atlanta Hawk who’s currently on the roster is John Collins, so there’s not a ton of that incumbent veteran presence you’re talking about. Still, despite his age I think guys do look up to Collins as a voice in the locker room. All-time Hawks glue guys: I’ll go recent and say Kent Bazemore. He was a big part of the playoff teams from a few seasons ago.

Dylan- This year we could see another Big 12 guard, and an international guard be drafted in the high lottery. Similar to Young’s draft. Frenchman, Killian Hayes is often seen either right above or right below Haliburton. Between Haliburton and Hayes who do you think will be the gem, and who will be the bust?

Zach- I’d lean towards Hayes. He’s a few years younger and that is the biggest reason. He has a lot of potential to grow into something similar to Haliburton as an overall player, and I think given the fact that he will enter the league as a 19-year old leaves him a good bit more upside in theory.

Dylan- Atlanta, Georgia (I’m assuming here) probably has a better nightlife than Ames, Iowa. How long will Haliburton be a resident of Atlanta before he has his name on a wing sauce below Lou William’s Lemon Pepper? And follow up, what style of signature sauce will the Haliburton chicken wing be?

Zach- LouWill is a native of South Gwinnett, an Atlanta suburb and is a local legend. No offense to Tyrese, but he’s probably not getting a wing flavor.

Post-Date Thoughts- Look, there’s two ideal landing spots for Tyrese, and I think this is one of them. I think the team fits his timeline. The Hawks are young, allowing him to develop into an NBA pro before the Hawks are having their moment in the post season.

A couple of the answers stung, I’m not going to lie. Killian Hayes seems like the type of player the Knicks will draft in the lottery, and you’ll never hear from him again. Which puts him a ways below my aspirations for Tyrese in the league. The Trae Young-Tyrese Haliburton conundrum is compelling to me. I think it could work just as easily as it couldn’t.

I think Tyrese’s passing, IQ, and vision would compliment Trae Young’s explosive offensive game. On the flip side, I could see why Haliburton could get sick of guarding the opposing team’s best guard every night, and watching Trae Young launch 10 3-point attempts a game. My heart makes it want to work though.




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