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Fan’s Perspective: Atlanta Hawks’ Jamal Crawford Resurgence Provides Opportunity for Big Payday Through Free Agency
If Crawford wants to stay in Atlanta, he would have to compromise.
Another scenario would be a potential 'sign-and-trade' with the Hawks to one of Crawford's potential destinations.
Some drawbacks would be Crawford's age, 31, his streakiness as a shooter and his defense.
The following is Crawford's shooting performance after Game 1 in which he was 8-for-16: Game 2 (2-for-10) in Chicago, Game 3 (3-for-7) in Atlanta, Game 4 (5-for-11) in Atlanta, Game 5 (1-for-9) at Chicago and Game 6 (2-for-10).
The Hawks were a playoff team before Crawford, and would be prepared to move on without him if his price is too high.
The Hawks probably still feel burned after signing Marvin WIlliams to a five-year extension in 2009 worth 40 million dollars—eight million per year.
Once Williams received his extension, it has been downhill as his production and propensity to get injured grew. Crawford is a much better talent, but if the New York Knicks or New Jersey Nets or whoever wants to pay more or even 10 million a year, Sund is apparently poised to say no and look for other options.
I believe Sund does recognize Crawford's efforts, but will Crawford bend in regard to negotiations?
Crawford had bounced around with a few teams such as Chicago, New York and Golden State over a span of nine years and did not make the playoffs.
Winning should matter in addition to getting paid.
Crawford accepted a back-up role as a sixth man and had his best two years of his career which included two playoff appearances.
Chemistry and finding a place where you fit in along with winning is the best of both worlds.
Against the Bulls, one of the Atlanta's chief competitors and obstacles moving forward, the need for playing defense was on full display.
Crawford couldn't stop anyone and his shot disappeared after the Bulls' defense clamped down on him.
The Hawks are at a crossroads, and have to make some tough decisions. Should the Hawks give an aging and somewhat one-dimensional Crawford, a substantial pay raise and hope he doesn't turn into Marvin Williams(notes)?
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