Collins trade rumors floated around at the trade deadline last February and this past summer, but nobody met the price of a starter and a quality first-round pick for the athletic forward. Now comes word that as the Hawks are talking to the Suns about a possible Jae Crowder trade, Collins’ name has come up again, reports Shams Charania of The Atheltic.
The Hawks have opened up preliminary trade discussions around forward John Collins, as interested teams inquire, league sources tell The Athletic. The Suns are a team showing desire in Collins, those sources have added, but they appear uninclined to take on the long-term money of Collins, who is in the second season of a five-year, $125 million contract. The Hawks don’t have an imminent deal in place involving Collins, those sources say, and executives around the league believe a potential deal will be weeks and potentially months in the making ahead of the Feb. 9 trade deadline.
The Suns turned their four spot over to Cameron Johnson this past summer because they wanted his strong shooting on the court more, which is part of why Crowder is away from the team awaiting a trade. Johnson is currently sidelined following surgery on a torn meniscus, but he is expected back later this season.
Johnson will be a restricted free agent this offseason, if the Suns brought in Collins — an athletic paint protector and finisher around the rim, but who has struggled from 3 this season — it’s a sign they would be moving on from Johnson. However, with Collins making more — potentially considerably more, depending on Johnson’s next deal — this becomes partially a question for ownership in Phoneix. What are they willing to spend? That is in flux with the team up for sale.
Other teams looking for help at the four — Miami, Milwaukee among them — could kick the tires on a Collins trade.
As noted, this is likely not a deal that gets done at least until January or close to the trade deadline. Or, considering the history of Collins trade rumors, maybe never.
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Report: Hawks open up trade discussion for John Collins. Again. originally appeared on NBCSports.com