No. 5: Atlanta Hawks trade for Draymond Green
The Golden State Warriors are struggling this season, in part because they have proven veterans playing poorly who were good very recently, including in their 2022 run to the championship. The Atlanta Hawks are similarly caught between their poor play and the memory of a deep playoff run in 2021.
The Hawks thought that they could maximize Trae Young by adding a second ball-handler, but the my-turn-your-turn offense they've developed around Young and Dejounte Murray is a step shy of dominant, even if it's one of the five or so best offenses in the league. That means that the Hawks need to have at least an average defense to ensure they can be a real threat in the playoffs.
What better way to improve the defense than to add a do-it-all defensive big like Draymond Green? The Hawks could offer a deal like this, getting off of the rest of Deandre Hunter's contract and giving up young forward Jalen Johnson to do so:
For the Hawks, they get an elite defender who can roam the paint and create turnovers; any time the Hawks can score in transition it's better for them. Green would also give them an edge that they don't have and help motivate this group to fight for wins.
Is this enough value for the Warriors? DeAndre Hunter has regressed since signing his lucrative new contract and is owed $90 million over this year and the next three. He's a solid defender and merely a decent shooter, but he should fill a rotation role for the Warriors. The real prize here is Johnson, who was one of the Hawks' best players to start the season and could pair with Jonathan Kuminga to give the Warriors a truly dynamic pair of forwards. As with all of these trades, the Warriors would be selling low, but Johnson's upside makes this an interesting offer.