Hawks, De’Andre Hunter Contract Extension Talks Are Far Apart

atlanta Hawks, NBA trade Rumors, De'Andre Hunter
NBA Analysis Network

The Atlanta Hawks came into the 2022 NBA offseason looking to shake up their roster and they accomplished that. They pulled off a big trade with the San Antonio Spurs, acquiring Dejounte Murray in exchange for three unprotected first-round picks, a pick swap and Danilo Gallinari, who was quickly waived.

After that, the Hawks made a deal with the Sacramento Kings to clear a little bit of long-term cap space and recoup some of the draft capital they sent to the Spurs. Kevin Huerter was sent out west with the Kings sending Justin Holiday, Maurice Harkless and a future first-round pick back to the Peach State.

The rumors didn’t stop there, as the Hawks were also reportedly shopping John Collins and Clint Capela. For now, they remain on the roster but things could certainly change before training camp and the regular season.

Another front that Atlanta is hoping progress is made before then is with the contract extension talks being held with De’Andre Hunter. Hunter, the No. 4 overall pick in the 2019 NBA Draft, is eligible for a rookie extension this offseason, but thus far, the two sides aren’t close to a deal according to Jake Fischer of Bleacher Report.

“Early indications are that Atlanta and [De’Andre] Hunter have not found much progress in extension talks, where both sides stand roughly $20 million apart on salary terms over a four-year deal.”

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When healthy, an argument could be made that Hunter has been the second-best player on the court for the Hawks behind Trae Young. Unfortunately, the injuries are a real concern for him as he has played in 139 regular season games in three seasons.

But, the Hawks love what he brings to the table, as he was essentially the only player on the roster along with Young that was deemed untouchable this offseason. His two-way play from the forward spots is integral to the team’s success and they are hopeful that he can continue making strides as he enters his fourth season in the league.

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The four-year, $80 million deal that Keldon Johnson agreed to with the Spurs is likely the baseline of what De’Andre Hunter and his representatives will be asking for. There is a lot of work still to be done, as $5 million annually is a sizable gap for the sides to overcome.

Long, arduous negotiations for a rookie extension aren’t new to the Hawks, however. They went through it with Collins, who didn’t agree to a deal before the deadline but signed a five-year, $125 million deal as a restricted free agent.

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