Atlanta Hawks point guard Trae Young is currently one of the fastest rising superstars in the league. In just his second year of playing in the NBA, Young has already earned his first NBA All-Star recognition after averaging 29.6 points, 4.3 rebounds, 9.3 assists, and 1.1 steals while shooting 43.7 percent from the field and 36.1 percent from beyond the arc. However, despite Young’s impressive performance in the 2019-20 NBA season, the Hawks remain as one of the worst NBA teams in the Eastern Conference.
With their goal to return to title contention, the Hawks should highly prioritize adding quality players that complement Young. One of the potential trade targets for the Hawks in the 2020 NBA offseason is Gary Harris of the Denver Nuggets. According to Greg Swartz of Bleacher Report, Harris would be a “perfect backcourt fit” with Young.
The potential arrival of Harris in Atlanta would ease the load on Young’s shoulder on the defensive end of the floor. Surrounding Young with another reliable three-point shooter would make it easier for him to penetrate the basket or kick the ball out when he’s trapped by the opposing team’s defense.
“A 6’4″ guard with a nearly 6’7″ wingspan, Harris is a three-and-D shooting guard who ranks first at his position and 11th overall in DRPM (plus-1.88). He’s also in need of a change of scenery since his numbers have regressed after he put up 17.5 points per game on 39.6 percent shooting from three in 2017-18. At age 25, he still fits the Hawks’ rebuild and would bring six years of experience to a young Atlanta team. Harris would space the floor for Young while taking on the toughest defensive assignment every night, allowing him to conserve his energy for the offensive end.”
Harris’ statistics this season may not be very impressive, but once he’s given more playing time and a significant role on the offensive end of the floor, he could return from being a prolific scorer in the league. To acquire Harris, Swartz suggested that the Hawks could offer a trade package that includes Kevin Huerter and Dewayne Dedmon to the Nuggets. The proposed trade deal works on ESPN‘s NBA Trade Machine.
If the trade becomes a reality, it would not only be beneficial for the Hawks, but also for the Nuggets. The potential deal would allow the Nuggets to acquire a younger replacement for Harris at the shooting guard position in Huerter. Though he has a lesser experience, Huerter is posting better numbers than Harris in the 2019-20 NBA season, averaging 12.2 points, 4.1 rebounds, and 3.8 assists while shooting 41.3 percent from the field and 38.0 percent from beyond the arc.
Meanwhile, Dedmon would be a great addition to the Nuggets’ frontcourt, giving them a big man who can shoot the ball from beyond the arc. With Mason Plumlee set to hit the free agency market this summer, Dedmon could serve as the primary backup for Nikola Jokic in the 2020-21 NBA season.