The defending NBA Champions just made their roster even stronger by acquiring sharpshooter Kyle Korver from the Atlanta Hawks. In exchange, the Hawks will receive another sharp shooter in Mike Dunleavy, Jr. and a protected first round draft pick in 2019. Korver has been with the Hawks for the past four seasons. Meanwhile, Dunleavy, Jr. joined the Cavs in the most recent offseason.
Reports from various reputable outlets suggest that the Hawks are looking to move Mike Dunleavy, Jr. immediately, but are comfortable with keeping him if need be. Atlanta is also reportedly shopping All-Star Paul Millsap to a handful of teams. Trading Korver could be the first in a series of trades made by the middling Hawks. Korver is in the final year of his current contract, and Millsap has the option to opt out after this season, which he almost certainly will. Dunleavy, Jr. still has another partially guaranteed year remaining. The Hawks are afraid that they may lose their high profile free agents during the off-season and receive nothing in return as they did this summer with All-Star Center Al Horford jetting off to Boston.
Kyle Korver first joined the Hawks in 2012 after being traded by the Chicago Bulls. In five seasons (including this one) he has been recognized league-wide for his premiere 3 PT shooting ability. Among active players, he ranks 7th in True Shooting percentage and 6th in Effective Field Goal percentage. He's also 3rd among active players in 3-Pt Shooting percentage. Undoubtedly his best season came in 2014-2015 when he was a crucial piece of a Hawks team that finished with a franchise record 60 wins. That season, Korver was named January Player of the Month (along with the Hawks' entire starting unit) and an Eastern Conference All-Star. He also finished first in both True Shooting percentage and 3-Pt shooting percentage, along with finishing in the top 10 in overall offensive rating that year. He'll finish his Hawks' career as the All-Time leader in 3-Pt and Free Throw percentages. He'll live on in fans' hearts much longer, as a key piece to turning the franchise around.
Mike Dunleavy, Jr. is no slouch of a shooter either. He boasts a career average of 38% from behind the arc. If the Hawks end up keeping him, he will bring some much-welcomed shooting to the small forward and power forward positions. However, it seems very likely the Hawks end up trading him.
How this move will impact the Hawks, this year is yet to be seen. For now, the Hawks will desperately miss the shooting, and spacing Kyle Korver brings on a nightly basis. Besides Korver, only Mike Muscala and Ryan Kelly are shooting above league average from long distance. Dennis Schroeder is very close, and Tim Hardaway, Jr. is also creeping towards the league mark, but no one on this roster will ever inspire the sort of fear Korver gives defenses. Until the rest of the dust settles on Atlanta and their transactions, this is a team that will continue to hover around a .500 record.