Marc J. Spears of ESPN’s The Undefeated and Adrian Wojnarowski of The Vertical broke the news that the Atlanta Hawks are sending Dwight Howard to Charlotte for Marco Belinelli and Mason Plumlee and an exchange of Round 2 picks. This means the long-awaited (at least by me) Hawks Rebuild has begun in earnest.
In theory, clearing Howard’s salary would make affording a max contract for Paul Millsap more affordable, but what’s the point of dumping Howard if you turn around and sink $200 million into a guy who’s even older? (Albeit a better player.) If you’re selling an asset in the attempt to get better later, Step 2 can’t be to splurge. Keep selling.
Not to say I told you so, but I kind of did: I gave the Dwight Experiment little chance of working, and his homecoming is done after 11 1/2 months. And it was just the other day — yesterday, to be precise — that these fingers typed a little something about the Hawks’ need to take a backward step in the effort to move forward. Trading Howard qualifies.
Not to compare every Hawks general manager to Danny Ferry, but this is the sort of thing Ferry did upon arrival. Now Travis Schlenk is taking a similar tack. Good luck to him.
Update: Esteemed colleague Chris Vivlamore has confirmed the reports: Howard is gone. Rebuild’s on. And I say, “Hooray.”