Report: Hawks exploring sign-and-trade options for Paul Millsap

0 Comments

This may be too little, too late.

A year after losing Al Horford for nothing, the Atlanta Hawks are on the verge of losing Paul Millsap the same way in free agency. Then GM Mike Budenholzer traded Kyle Korver and was moving toward a Millsap trade at the deadline when that rug was pulled out from under him by ownership. Now the Hawks have traded Dwight Howard and seem committed to the rebuild, but now they would like to get something back for Millsap after ownership killed plans to trade him at the deadline.

They are trying to find a sign-and-trade that works, reports Brian Windhorst of ESPN on SportsCenter (hat tip SLAM).

There are three or four teams out there that are willing to give Millsap a max contract, and sources have told me that the Hawks have begun getting some feelers on sign-and-trades.

Teams like the Phoenix Suns, Sacramento Kings and Denver Nuggets are interested in Paul Millsap.

Under the rules of the CBA, Millsap cannot make more money with a sign and trade (the days of a team signing a guy to a five-year max in a sign-and-trade are gone, now that contract can only be for the four-year deal another team could offer as a free agent). Which means the only motivation for these other teams is to clear out some cap space needed to sign Millsap, or to get other value.

The Hawks don’t have much leverage here. If he wants to go to Denver and they work it to sign him outright, Atlanta has no leverage. However, if the Nuggets want to clear out space or move someone like Wilson Chandler, they can do it through a sign-and-trade. It’s more up to the Nuggets than the Hawks.

It’s something to watch as the Hawks try to salvage something from their two biggest stars leaving.