NBA Trade Rumors: 5 teams that can rescue Dejounte Murray from the Hawks 

The Hawks have been fielding offers for Dejounte Murray for weeks, yet he remains in Atlanta. These are five teams that can swoop in like a hawk and rescue Murray. 

Dallas Mavericks v Atlanta Hawks
Dallas Mavericks v Atlanta Hawks / Todd Kirkland/GettyImages
facebooktwitterreddit
Prev
4 of 5
Next

How the New Orleans Pelicans can rescue Dejounte Murray

Dejounte Murray to New Orleans

The Pelicans are 27-21 and have enjoyed healthy seasons from their core three of Zion Williamson, Brandon Ingram, and CJ McCollum, but they don’t look capable of making much noise in the playoffs. While that doesn’t mean drastic changes should be coming, adding Dejounte Murray could give them far more upside in the long term. 

McCollum is in the midst of the most efficient scoring season of his career, but he’s 32 (Williamson and Ingram are 23 and 26) and owed $64 million over the next two seasons. It has been a great half of basketball, but chances are this is the absolute best McCollum will play over the remainder of his deal. Contrast that with Murray, who is 27 and only owed $53 million over the next two seasons, and it becomes clear he fits the Pelicans’ timeline much better while also being cheaper. 

The Hawks would also have to include Clint Capela to make the salary math work. Fortunately, the Pelicans have been looking to add a center with team control beyond this season, and Capela is under contract next season for $22.2 million. While Capela has declined since his excellent debut season in Atlanta, he’s a defensive upgrade over Jonas Valančiūnas, who is in the final year of his deal. 

The cost to acquire both Murray and Capela, along with sending McCollum’s contract, won’t be cheap. The Pelicans will have to send the Lakers’ 2024 first-round pick, the Milwaukee Bucks’ 2025 first-round pick, and offer their own 2027 first-round pick. That’s a lot of pick capital, but Murray and Capela are arguably upgrades on McCollum and Valančiūnas and certainly upgrades in the long run. This deal allows the Pelicans to improve their future outlook and remain just as competitive in the short term. 

The Hawks should be receptive to this type of trade because while they’re stuck with the McCollum contract, they get off of Capela’s deal and land three juicy picks. The Lakers’ 2024 pick has a stipulation that after the draft lottery, the owner of the pick can opt to have it convey in 2025. The Bucks’ 2025 pick doesn’t project to be all that interesting, but they’re an old roster that hasn’t lived up to expectations. And a Pelicans 2027 pick allows the Hawks to bet against three different teams rather than one.