Atlanta Hawks, Dallas Mavericks swap top-5 picks at NBA Draft

By Charles Odum
Associated Press

The Atlanta Hawks have added a new floor leader to their rebuilding effort by acquiring point guard Trae Young from the Dallas Mavericks in an exchange of NBA draft picks with the Dallas Mavericks.

The Hawks drafted guard Luka Doncic of Slovenia with the No. 3 overall pick and then traded rights to Doncic to Dallas for rights to Young, the No. 5 overall pick, and a 2019 first-round pick. The trade was announced at the draft.

Young led the nation with his averages of 27.4 points and 8.7 assists for Oklahoma. The 6-foot-2 Young scored at least 40 points in four games and tied a Division I record by recording 22 assists in a game.

The Hawks’ decision to acquire Young likely means veteran guard Dennis Schroder’s future with the team could be short-lived.

This is not the first time the Hawks have quickly traded the No. 3 overall pick. In 2001, the Hawks made Pau Gasol the No. 3 overall pick and then traded his draft rights to the Memphis Grizzlies for Shareef Abdur-Rahim.

Doncic was Atlanta’s highest draft pick since 2007, when center Al Horford was the No. 3 pick.

The Hawks have four picks in the top 34, including three in the first round. The Hawks also have No. 19 and No. 30 picks in the first round and the No. 34 selection in the second round.

The trade was not a major surprise.

With so many draft picks, Hawks general manager Travis Schlenk said last week he was entertaining numerous trade offers. The Hawks, who finished last in the Eastern Conference last season, will continue their rebuilding effort with Young and first-year coach Lloyd Pierce.

Mike Budenholzer was hired as Milwaukee’s new coach after reaching a mutual agreement to leave the Hawks.

Young joins an Atlanta roster which returns few set starters. Forward-center John Collins showed promise as a rookie last season, and forward Taurean Prince is another young piece of the rebuilding effort. Veterans Kent Bazemore and Dwayne Dedmon are under contract for next season.

Schroder said in a recent interview in his native Germany he would like to be traded.

The Cavaliers selected a point guard and pitchman.

Moments after the team selected Collin Sexton with the No. 8 pick, the Alabama playmaker made his appeal for LeBron James to resign with Cleveland.

“Man, LeBron, let’s do it,” Sexton said during ESPN’s telecast from the draft in Brooklyn. “Let’s do it. I’ve you needed a few extra pieces this past season, and let’s do it. Let’s go back to the Finals.”

The Cavs are hoping Sexton — and perhaps a few more tweaks to their roster — will help convinces James that there is no reason for him to leave home for the second time in his career.

Sexton averaged 19.2 points and 3.6 assists as a freshman for the Crimson Tide, and the 19-year-old also carried the school to the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2012.