Five Reasons the NBA Should Want the Atlanta Hawks Picking First

Atlanta Hawks, John Collins (Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)
Atlanta Hawks, John Collins (Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images) /
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Atlanta Hawks
Atlanta Hawks, Zion Williamson (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images) /

The 2019 NBA Draft Lottery is set for May 14. That is the day that the Atlanta will learn what pick they have in the upcoming NBA Draft. The right to draft forward Zion Williamson is the prize for winning this year’s lottery. Here are five reasons the NBA should want the Atlanta Hawks to be rewarded with the number one pick.

The Atlanta Hawks have never had the fortune of winning the NBA Draft Lottery and picking first in the NBA Draft. In fact since the NBA Draft Lottery was installed in 1985, the year of the famous frozen envelope conspiracy theory, that led to the New York Knicks drafting Georgetown Center Patrick Ewing, the Hawks have only picked number two once. Unfortunately Atlanta used that number two pick on the disappointing Marvin Williams. Had the Atlanta Hawks selected point guard Chris Paul in that spot instead, the franchise would have been forever altered.

The Atlanta Hawks have also selected number three, three times in the modern era. Pau Gasol was selected number three overall by the Hawks in 2001, but was immediately traded to the Memphis Grizzlies for Shareef Abdur-Rahim. That move paid instant dividends for the Hawks, as Abdur-Raheem was an All Star and had a career best 50 point game for the club in 2002. However in the long-term, the trade was the wrong move. Al Horford was picked number three in 2007 by Atlanta. He was selected to the Eastern Conference All Star team four times, during his time as a Hawk. Unfortunately for Atlanta, they were one pick away from the opportunity to select franchise changer Kevin Durant in that draft.

Of course everyone knows that this past draft, the Atlanta Hawks selected Luka Doncic with the number three overall pick and promptly traded him to the Dallas Mavericks, for sensational point guard Trae Young and a top five protected lottery pick. Young set the Atlanta Hawks rookie assist record this past season with 643 assist, an average of 8.1 per game. The team also has a high probability of obtaining the number nine overall selection in this year’s draft to complete the trade. This trade will forever go down in Hawks lore, and the two men Young and Doncic, will forever be linked due to the trade. Both players are also the top candidates to win rookie of the year honors.

The Atlanta Hawks have also had one other top five pick during the lottery era. That pick turned out be a complete bust, with the team selecting center Sheldon Williams from Duke University. There are a plethora of reasons that the NBA should want to see the Hawks win this year’s draft lottery. Here are five of those reasons.