The Atlanta Hawks are participating in their Media Day today, signifying how close the 2015-16 basketball season is to starting up. After a historical season for the franchise, last season’s NBA Coach of the Year Mike Budenholzer and the Hawks look to take the next step towards winning an NBA championship.
Atlanta’s 60-22 record a year ago was the best in the history of the franchise, but were ousted in the Eastern Conference Finals by the Cleveland Cavaliers. The loss of Thabo Sefolosha prior to the playoffs hurt their chances of operating at full strength, especially on the defensive end, but it’s a new season for an organization that appears to still be on the rise.
Paul Millsap returned to the team after visiting a few clubs during the free agency period, ultimately signing a three-year, $59 million contract to remain in Atlanta. The largest loss was the departure of DeMarre Carroll, who cashed in on his personal best 2014-15 season, signing a $60 million deal with the Toronto Raptors. The rest of the supporting cast remains, including Al Horford, Jeff Teague, sharpshooter Kyle Korver, Sefolosha and backup guard Dennis Schroeder, meaning the Hawks will still have one of the deeper rosters in the East.
Atlanta had the No. 15 overall pick of the 2015 NBA Draft but were involved in a draft day trade that landed them former New York Knicks shooting guard Tim Hardaway Jr. It was a three-way deal that involved players and draft picks between the Hawks, Knicks and Washington Wizards. The 15th overall selection wound up being Kelly Oubre Jr. out of Kansas, who will play for the Wizards.
The preseason slate begins as early as October 7, when the Hawks travel to Cincinnati, Ohio to face the Cleveland Cavaliers at the Cintas Center near Xavier University. Hawks tickets on the secondary market have an average price of $64.46 with a get-in price of $18 to get the basketball fix in early. Whether it’s booking flights to Cincinnati for Hawks preseason action or scheduling trips to Atlanta during the regular season, Hipmunk.com is the top option for the traveling NBA fan. Their Atlanta hotel guide will create the most economical trip for Hawks basketball throughout the season.
The Hawks have the ninth-best odds to win the NBA title this year, with the Cavaliers, Miami Heat, Washington Wizards, Golden State Warriors, San Antonio Spurs, Los Angeles Clippers, Oklahoma City Thunder and New Orleans Pelicans all drawing more favorable odds.