Boston Celtics‘ interest in John Collins is no secret. The Atlanta Hawks big man is one of the hottest names potentially up for grabs ahead of the March 25th trade deadline and has been linked to Cs on multiple occasions. However, it appears that he isn’t the only Hawks player Boston could be attempting to pry away from Atlanta.
“Boston’s pursuit of Collins also involves another key Hawks rotation player, according to league sources: Bogdan Bogdanovic, whom the Celtics had some trade discussions about while he was in Sacramento,” The Ringer’s reported. “If the Hawks were to acquire Ball, maybe moving Bogdanovic would make some sense. Both Collins, 23, and Bogdanovic, 28, fit the timeline of All-Stars Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown, who are 23 and 24, yet are good enough to compete now.”
Bogdanovic, fresh off a season-high 23 points, appears to be hitting his stride after a knee injury forced him out of the lineup for nearly two months. When right, the Serbian guard is a viable floor-spacer who’s shot 37.0% from beyond the arc over his four-year NBA career. He averaged 15.1 ppg with the Kings in 2019-20. Furthermore, he adds value as a secondary distributor, averaging 3.5 assists per game over his 209 game tenure in Sacramento. The Celtics currently average the fourth-fewest team assists per game (22.6) in the NBA.
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Celtics Showing ‘Significant Trade Interest’ in John Collins
While Bogdanovic would be a nice puzzle piece, Collins is the apple of Boston’s eye. Although they’re clearly not alone in the interest of the Utah native.
“League sources say Atlanta is receiving significant trade interest for John Collins from the Celtics, Kings, Mavericks, Pistons, and Timberwolves,” per O’Connor.
As for what it would take to acquire Collins, O’Connor claims the Hawks’ asking price includes one young player and a first-round draft pick to make a deal or “a package of similar value such as multiple first-round picks.”
Collins ‘Unlikely’ to be Moved?
The 23-year-old forward is a budding star in this league and has been a driving force in Atlanta’s recent turnaround. Collins has averaged 18.6 points and 8.8 assists over the Hawks’ eight-game win streak. In all honesty, aside from his future contract demands, there’s not much to dislike about Collins’ game. He’s an athletic big who’s improving defensively and is just one year removed from shooting above 40% from 3-point range.
That type of skillset, matched with the fact the Collins’ salary for this season checks in at only $4.1 million is a reason why he’s become so sought after. Yet, it’s also why Atlanta may ultimately be reluctant to move off of him at the deadline.
“John Collins, I think, is unlikely to leave Atlanta,” ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski claimed on The Woj Pod. “I don’t think they can find value on a rookie contract for him.”
With that said, if Atlanta is in fact willing to cut ties with Collins it would likely entail a trade package similar to this one: “League sources say Atlanta wanted Malik Beasley and a first from Minnesota, but the Wolves declined,” O’Connor reported.
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