MACON, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) – Thursday night is the NBA Draft.
Now, I know the Atlanta Hawks are not as important around here. The Braves are in first place. Georgia is coming off its best season ever and we can now see football season is getting closer by the day. But we do need to pay attention to what the Hawks will do Thursday night in the draft.
They are rebuilding, and we saw with the Braves that it takes time and it takes patience. The Hawks need a lot of talent, and let’s be honest… if they are to ever get great… they must find some stars. That’s what is required in the NBA – star power. And that’s what makes Thursday’s draft important.
Atlanta has the third pick in the first round, and then two more picks later in the first round. They have four of the top 34 draft picks, so they must use this currency wisely. They may make a trade to move up to get another lottery pick. That’s the latest rumor, but it changes by the hour.
With the third pick, I hope the Hawks draft Luka Doncic. He’s a 19-year-old kid who has played professionally overseas for several years. His team just won the Spanish league championship earlier this week. Doncic wants to play point guard in the NBA, and he just looks like a dynamic player. It won’t be horrible if the Hawks get Marvin Bagley or Mohamed Bamba, but Doncic might be special. If you ask me who could be the best player out of this draft in five or ten years, I think it’s Doncic. Go watch some of his film on YouTube, and you’ll probably agree with me.
The Hawks have to get this right. They need an impact player at three, and a rebuilding project is only as good as the draft picks the team gets along the way. This ownership seems ready to be patient, knowing this might be the first of a couple of lottery picks the team may have in the next few years.
And look, while the NBA is not first on many people’s list around here compared to the Braves or football, just think of how great it would be to have another star in Atlanta. Think about how it was when Dominique Wilkins was on the Hawks back 30 years ago.
If the Hawks front office can make the right draft pick, we could have that again. The Braves have showed up that rebuilding projects can work. They made a lot of great decisions in their rebuild, and they’re now in first place. The main work with Hawks has just begun, but it certainly can get kickstarted if they hit a home run Thursday night in the NBA Draft.