Last week, the Hawks acquired Jeremy Lin, which left more certainty than questions when it came to the future of Dennis Schroder. Lin’s arrival hinted that Schroder was most likely primed to leave Atlanta, but nobody knew when. Earlier on Wednesday, there were rumors that the Hawks and Oklahoma City had talks surrounding Dennis Schroder and Carmelo Anthony. The Thunder have been trying to get rid of Carmelo due to his massive salary guarantee ($27.9 million) in 2018/19 and because he was a detriment to their success when on the court. On Thursday afternoon, the news broke: Dennis Schroder was sent to the Thunder, Mike Muscala was sent to the 76ers, and Carmelo Anthony and a protected 2022 first-round, lottery-protected pick was sent to the Hawks.
How does this help the Hawks?
The Hawks are turning over a new leaf in their franchise, getting Dennis off their hands and out of their books. With a new point guard of the future in Trae Young arriving, it was time to say goodbye to Schroder. It seemed even before draft night that it was inevitable Schroder wouldn’t return to Atlanta for the 2018/19 season. The Hawks will promptly release Carmelo, paying him his fully-guaranteed salary to go elsewhere.
Anthony will get his entire $27.9M in the buyout and waiver with Hawks. It could take a few days to work thru logistics on trade. 'Melo met with Rockets and Heat in Las Vegas. Again, Rockets are the frontrunner. https://t.co/2rbDZ7vUu1
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) July 19, 2018
It doesn’t hurt to bring on Carmelo’s contract because it’s an expiring deal. So instead of having 30 million in cap space next season, they will now have around 45 million. They also get a 2022 first round pick and acquired Justin Anderson, who is familiar with Lloyd Pierce in Philadelphia.
Does this benefit Schroder?
Schroder has been known for wanting to be the star player on the team. When Jeff Teague was still on the Hawks, he voiced his frustration, saying he wants to be the starting point guard. The team eventually traded Teague, and Schroder got his wishes. He was decent as a starter for the Hawks, but he still had his issues on and off the court. Trading him to OKC doesn’t grant his wishes if he still plans on being a starting guard. Russell Westbrook is the franchise point guard, and there is no way, minus Westbrook being abducted by aliens, that Schroder is taking his spot. He would make the case as a very reliable backup point guard for the Thunder, who haven’t had the best luck in that position since Reggie Jackson was traded. If Schroder’s ego doesn’t get in the way, the Thunder could be an improved team going into next season.