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Hawks.com: The trade deadline is such a tough time for many teams, and from an outsider’s point of view it appears as if teams sometimes panic. How do you fight that?

Billy Knight: Well, ideally, you don’t want to make deals at the trade deadline. You would much rather make deals out of season, in the summertime, after you’ve had a whole year to evaluate your players and give their chemistry time to develop. This game takes patience, and that is tough to have in today’s microwave age. People need everything to happen quicker to satisfy everyone’s appetites, but I don’t think pro basketball works that way.

Unfortunately, we couldn’t wait until the off-season this time. Our opportunity to add players and draft picks was at the deadline, much like last year when we traded Rasheed Wallace, which got us the 17th pick and turned into Josh Smith. We got another pick (in the deal for Antoine Walker), and if it turns out to be a similar pick, and we get another Josh Smith, then I’ll be very happy. That was the impetus in doing the deal for us, to add more players and more depth to our team and build our core of assets.

Hawks.com: How do you assess the team’s future with four potential draft picks in the upcoming draft and a ton of salary cap space? Are things about where you want them to be?

BK:
Well, certainly we would like to have more wins at this point than we do, that’s obvious. Teams learn from winning, and that is important. Having said that, our players are young, and they are getting a taste of playing. That is one advantage we have over other teams – we have the ability to give real minutes to our young players, and that will certainly benefit them in the long run.

We are going to keep building. There are some players who can help us in this draft and in free agency. We think we can add a player or two who can definitely help us long term. Our whole goal is to continue to get better. In doing that, you have the opportunity to hit a home run if the circumstances are right. We’re always looking for a home run, but we’ll take singles and doubles too.

Hawks.com: There is criticism around the league at times because teams throw a lot of money at seemingly marginal players, but you have been very selective with spending money so far. Is it hard to compete against that?

BK: Everyone has to do what they think is best. We talked to some free agents last summer, we talked money with some of them, but we didn’t get anything done. I don’t look at that as the end of the world. We talked in the range of where we thought a player should be in, and if that player can get more somewhere else, then good luck to them. That’s the only thing I can tell him. Just because another team will offer more than us doesn’t mean we should change our thinking. We aren’t going to throw money at someone just because others are doing it. We are going to spend for players because we like them and feel comfortable with them, but if it’s not right, then we will save it for another day.

Hawks.com: Is it hard to stay disciplined when a team has so much money to spend?

BK: It’s not hard for me to stay disciplined. We know what we want to do. Maybe it is for others, I don’t know, that’s their business, but for us it’s not hard at all. For me it would be harder to be undisciplined, because I do everything in a disciplined way.

We would like to be in a better win/loss situation right now, but otherwise we are happy with the progress we are making. Our young guys are continuing to get better. We are pleased with the job Mike Woodson is doing – his teaching, his attitude, and the way he has the team playing hard every night. We are very pleased with all those things, so there are some positives.
 

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Discussion Starter #2
His answer to the 2nd question makes me think we won't throw a ton of money at lazy underachieving fat stupid Eddy Curry.
 

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How big of a cap does Atlanta has anyway? How many big guns can they sign?
 
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