Atlanta Hawks: John Collins deserves an extension, at the right price

Atlanta Hawks, John Collins to discuss contract extension

Despite a disappointing 2019-20 NBA campaign, the Atlanta Hawks are still considered an Eastern Conference on the rise and might have one of the brightest futures for any young team in the NBA.

Led by Trae Young, the Hawks finished 20-47 on the year and weren’t invited to the NBA’s restart bubble this season. However, many believe that the best is yet to come for this young duo. And one of the biggest reasons why is John Collins. In his third season with the Hawks, Collins averaged 22 points, 10 rebounds, and nearly two blocks per game on 58 percent shooting from the field and 40 percent shooting from 3-point range.

He’s shown promise on both ends of the floor and is considered a vital part of this team’s young core. How vital? Well, that’s the big question.

Collins is eligible for a contract extension this offseason. Based on the breakout he’s had as a player over the last two seasons, there’s a good chance that he could be in line for an expensive max extension.

Would the Hawks pay that? It’s tough to say, but at the very least they’re ready and willing to talk about it.  According to AJC.com, the Hawks are expected to have contract extension talks with John Collins when the extension window opens. If the two sides are unable to agree to a deal, Collins will be a restricted free agent after the 2020-21 season.

This is a difficult position for the Hawks to be in. Collins will most likely demand a max extension and you can make the argument that he’s played his way into one. However, after acquiring Clint Capela and likely having to give Trae Young a max extension in the next two seasons, I’m not sure if it would be the best bet for Atlanta to give up that type of contract this offseason.

At the very least, if Collins doesn’t pivot off a max stance, perhaps it would be wise to let him play out this season and just match any contract offer he gets in restricted free agency. Or, if they still don’t want to pay him the big money that he’s likely to demand on the free-agent market, perhaps they could work out a sign-and-trade with him.

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It’s not a foregone conclusion that John Collins will be in Atlanta long-term, but there’s no question he’s quickly transforming into a really good player for the Hawks. Atlanta just needs to determine whether or not he’s become invaluable to the Hawks.