Travis Schlenk Rumors
LeBron James would reportedly meet with the Warriors if they clear max space next summer. But LeBron also called that rumor “nonsense.” Hawks general manager and former Golden State assistant general manager Travis Schlenk, via CBS Atlanta: “I would be really, really surprised if LeBron went to Golden State. The one thing I will say about Mr. James: He is the master at using the media to get whatever story he wants out there. He’s perfected the art of the social-media game. I think that those things were probably leaked by them, by Mr. James and his camp. I don’t see a universe where that happens. It would be interesting to see. It would be interesting to see what he’d be like with the rest of those guys, with his playmaking ability and obviously with the shooting that Golden State has.”
The Hawks, under the leadership of first-year GM Travis Schlenk, have made everyone available, several rival team executives said. As Atlanta rebuilds, Schlenk — who shed Dwight Howard’s contract this summer and let Paul Millsap walk — has been seeking expiring contracts and draft picks in deals. Marco Belinelli and Ersan Ilyasova, veteran, floor-spacing players, have generated interest, as has second-year swingman Taurean Prince. Dennis Schroder is available, but the three-years and $46.5 million remaining on Schroder’s deal coupled with a string of maturity issues have made interest minimal.
KL Chouinard: Schlenk said yes when asked if he or Coach Bud had sat down to talk to players 1-on-1: “We don’t feel pressured to do anything because of (future flexibility), but if there’s an opportunity that makes sense for us, then we’re certainly going to take a hard look at it.”
(On having 1-on-1 discussions with players about trade rumors) “Yeah. That’s one of the downsides to being where we are right now. It’s real easy to throw our guys out in the media, right? There are some rumors that are true and certainly some that aren’t, especially when you start looking at, you know, I think there for one stretch that every single day one of our guys was on the cover of HoopsHype. I would say this: We’re not shopping any of our guys. Teams know where we are, and team have interest in our guys just like we have interest in our guys. “We talk with the players directly. I communicate with the agents anytime there’s something that’s out there that is completely false, we step up right away and say, ‘Listen. Don’t worry about it.’ “I’ve jokingly said to Garin (Narain, Hawks Senior VP of PR) earlier, ‘We’re just kind of low-hanging fruit out there right now. It’s really easy to throw us out there.”
The worst thing you can be in the NBA is mediocre, and that’s where the Hawks were. Majority owner Tony Ressler had to be convinced to let Millsap go, but he signed off on not re-signing Millsap, and then went all-in on Process South, replacing former GM Wes Wilcox in May — who remains with the franchise as a consultant — with Schlenk, who was the assistant GM with the Warriors the last five years. “Well, we had two choices, the way I saw it,” Ressler said Friday, in the new owners’/VIP digs, which are hard off the new Hawks Bar that is directly behind the baseline, steps off the floor — one of the many parts of the Philips renovation, which is scheduled to conclude next year.”