Could the New Orleans Pelicans unite Zion Williamson and John Collins to create one of the most dynamic two-way duos in the league?
With the NBA trade deadline rapidly approaching, fans are eagerly awaiting news on which team will make the first move. Over the past few weeks, it has continued to look like the LA Lakers will be one of the more active teams prior to the trade deadline. Despite that, it has been reported that the team won't make a blockbuster trade.
Absent the massive deal many were expecting from the Lakers, there has been little word on which teams could shake things up with a huge trade. According to Bleacher Report, the Atlanta Hawks have been taking calls regarding 6'9 forward John Collins.
While the team is content to hold onto Collins past the deadline, the New Orleans Pelicans have reportedly reached out for preliminary talks. Given that Collins is in the second year of a four-year deal that also includes a player option in the fifth year, a deal would likely be a huge shakeup for the Hawks.
With that said, as the team sits at .500 with a 24-24 record, a shakeup may be what's needed. After the team added Dejounte Murray to their roster this offseason, they appeared poised to go on a tear this year. Unfortunately, for their fans, the team has continued to come up short, recently losing to the Chicago Bulls on the road 111-100.
During the game, John Collins scored just 11 points and hauled down nine rebounds during 36 minutes played while turning the ball over five times. On the defensive end of the floor, Collins allowed young Chicago Bulls forward Patrick Williams to feast. In 31 minutes, Williams scored 18 points, hauled down 10 boards, and dished out two assists.
John Collins' play this season and other potential landing spots
John Collins has played in 40 of the Atlanta Hawks' 48 games this season. During that time, he has averaged just 13.2 points, the fewest since his rookie year. Add onto that a career-low 26.0% from beyond the arc and a career-low 50.9% from the field, and it's no wonder the team is open to taking calls for him.
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While his numbers have been underwhelming, Collins has shown flashes of brilliance this season, earning him praise from head coach Nate McMillan. Back in November, after the team lost to the Cleveland Cavaliers 114-102, McMillan praised Collins' three-point shot during the post-game press conference.
Prior to that game (where he shot 3-5 from beyond the arc), John Collins was shooting just 6-41 over a 14-game stretch. With the New Orleans Pelicans sitting in fourth place in a stacked Western Conference, a move before the February 9 trade deadline could be exactly what they need.