Amid trade rumors, John Collins says he wants to stay with Atlanta Hawks ‘for my entire career’

The 2021 NBA trade deadline is fast approaching and one of the players who could be on the move is Atlanta Hawks forward John Collins. But if he’s able to have things his way, he’ll be staying put — not just for the rest of this season, but for the rest of his career. 

In an interview with The Athletic on Tuesday, Collins said that he’d like to remain with the Hawks for his entire career, and wants to stay “true to Atlanta.”

“I want to stay. I want my flowers here in Atlanta. I want to be true to Atlanta for my entire career, as corny or as cheesy as it may sound to whoever. As a basketball player and as someone who takes pride in their job, me being drafted in the organization and me living here and becoming a man and living my life in the NBA as a Hawk means something to me.”

“It might not mean a lot to other people but I want to be here. I want my future to be here. I want to think about my future here but the reality of the situation is stuff doesn’t always go the way I want it to. All I can do to make sure my future is as good as it can be is make sure I’m the best player I can be and wake up every day and figure it out.”

Collins is in the final year of his contract, and his upcoming free agency is the key reason he’s been featured in trade rumors. On the court he’s been great for the Hawks this season — 18.3 points and 7.8 rebounds per game, while shooting 37.4 percent from 3-point land — but he turned down a four-year, $90 million extension offer in the fall, which led many to wonder about his long-term future with the club. 

There’s been rumors linking him to the Celtics, the Kings are apparently interested and the Timberwolves wanted him last season. Trading a player like Collins is tricky business, however, because his current and future contract situation makes it difficult to find the requisite return value. The Hawks are going to want a significant return, but other teams won’t be as willing to give up a huge package for a player they could sign in free agency a few months later (although Atlanta does hold matching rights since he’ll be a restricted free agent). 

If Collins is intent on getting more money than the Hawks are willing to offer, their front office will have an obvious desire to trade him and avoid losing him for nothing in free agency. At the same time, the Hawks are now in fourth place in the Eastern Conference, and in position to end their playoff drought, which dates back to 2017. Moving Collins would be a serious blow to that goal. 

As such, Collins’ belief that he won’t get traded at the deadline seems logical. Unless they get blown away by an offer from some team at the last minute, it just makes more sense for the Hawks to play this out, try to make the playoffs and revisit the contract situation in the offseason. 

 Source link

Back to top button
SoundCloud To Mp3