Wednesday, July 07, 2010

SLAM Online: Whitaker: About That Joe Johnson Contract...

Lang Whitaker's take on the Joe Johnson contract falls somewhere between Mark Bradley's defense of it and the criticism and worry it's drawn from the Hawks blogosphere. Which makes sense given Lang's position both on the general-columnist-to-team-specific-writer and old-to-new-media spectra. It's also well-reasoned and well-written:
In some ways, the Joe Johnson free agency was a lose-lose situation for the Atlanta Hawks. If the Hawks bid somewhere lower than the max and lost Joe, the chorus of “The Hawks are afraid to spend money” would have rang out. And if the Hawks *had* bid lower than the max, they probably would not have re-signed Joe. As it turned out, the Hawks decided not to be cheap, and when free agency began they aggressively offered the most money possible to Joe, who happily agreed to take that money.

The Hawks really had just two options:

1) Spend whatever it takes to keep Joe Johnson

2) Let Joe go and have about $7 million to spend on a free agent to replace a four-time All-Star
Go read the whole thing.

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