On Fire in Atlanta: Can the Hawks Keep Winning?

On March 1st, while in the midst of another disappointing season, the Atlanta Hawks dismissed Lloyd Pierce. The next day, they promoted assistant coach Nate McMillan to be the interim head coach and since then, the flood gates have opened as the Hawks have won 8 straight games. 

Since McMillan took over the Hawks, they have had the league's 2nd best defensive rating and have developed a more well-rounded attack. Trae Young and John Collins have been the Hawks two best players, which is what needs to happen in order for the Hawks to be successful. However, they're getting help from others - specifically Danilo Gallinari, who is averaging 17.6 ppg & 6.1 rpg in 30.0 mpg during the win streak (by far his best stretch of the season). Bogdan Bogdanovic is starting to play his way back into form after missing an extended period of time, and Clint Capela has been playing the best basketball of his career this season, leading the NBA in rebounding at 14.2 per game. Despite the run of success, could more help be on the way in Atlanta? 

There have been rumors about Raptors guard Norman Powell heading to Atlanta. Powell is in his 6th year out of UCLA and a veteran of the Raptors recent run of success - he's played in the playoffs every year of his career and has an NBA Championship under his belt. He is presently on the best run of his career - since the start of February (22 games), Powell has averaged 23.9 ppg on 53.5% FG & 46.6% 3P. He would give the Hawks a legitimate scoring wing and could provide leadership stability in the post-season. 

Whether or not the Hawks pull the trigger at the deadline, it will be an exciting stretch run to the post-season for a team that hasn't sniffed the playoffs for the last few years. 

Photo Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports