Marvin Balgey III may be back before the season is over, but it seems the Sacramento Kings are looking to bolster their front court in spite of that. According to Kevin O’Connor of The Ringer, the Kings are one of five teams that have expressed serious interest in trading for Atlanta Hawks big man John Collins:
League sources say Atlanta is receiving significant trade interest for John Collins from the Celtics, Kings, Mavericks, Pistons, and Timberwolves. The Hawks want 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’ name has been in the rumor mill all season long because he can become a restricted free agent this summer, but with just four days until the NBA trade deadline, the Hawks are quickly running out of time to decide whether or not they see Collins as part of their future. If the Hawks do make a concerted effort to move on from Collins before the trade deadline, it wouldn’t be the worst idea for the Kings to try and make an offer for him.
Through 42 games for the Hawks this season, Collins has averaged 18.2 points on 53.8% shooting from the field and 37.7% shooting from behind the arc while also averaging 7.8 rebounds and 1.1 blocks per game. Upon arrival, he’d be one of the Kings’ best players.
The question for the Kings is whether or not they want to make a long-term commitment to a player who plays the same position as Bagley, who they drafted with the No. 2 overall pick in the 2018 NBA Draft. If the answer to that question is yes, then they have to ask themselves if Collins and Bagley can fit together or if they’d have to be traded for one another.
Given where the Kings and Hawks are in their respective rebuilding phases, I’d say a trade between them is unlikely, at least one involving Collins. However, if nothing else, this rumors shows the Kings are actively pursuing upgrades in the front court, which could tell us something about their plans going forward.