NBA guard Marco Belinelli continues to be a wanted player after his departure from the Atlanta Hawks. Several NBA teams are reportedly interested in the 31-year-old shooting guard. Many of those teams were seeking Marco Belinelli in a trade with the Atlanta Hawks prior to the NBA trade deadline.
The Atlanta Hawks were hoping to get a draft pick or a young player for Marco Belinelli. The Hawks continued to seek out trade options for Belinelli up until the deadline, according to the Atlanta Journal Constitution. Once the Hawks were unsuccessful in their efforts, there was only one option available to them.
According to NBA.com, the Atlanta Hawks agreed to a buyout with Marco Belinelli on Friday. In doing so, the Atlanta Hawks made Marco Belinelli a free agent, who can sign with the team of his choosing.
Where Marco Belinelli signs is up for discussion. As many as eight NBA teams could be interested in Belinelli. Each of those teams are true postseason contenders.
The Oklahoma City Thunder, Philadelphia 76ers and San Antonio Spurs were all engaged in trade discussions with the Hawks for Marco Belinelli, according to ESPN. It is easy to assume that each team will be looking to sign Belinelli for the rest of the season.
Shooting is on the minds of each team which will be in the pursuit of Marco Belinelli. The potential playoff teams with the biggest need for shooting are the 76ers and Thunder. Three-point shooters are scarce on both teams, which are in different places in regards to their playoff statuses.
The Philadelphia 76ers want to make the postseason. Having another shooter to space the floor for Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons would be beneficial to their cause. Marco Belinelli coming in as a reserve to spell Sixers’ guard J.J. Redick is what Philadelphia envisions.
Shooting and perimeter defense are what ail the Oklahoma City Thunder. The Thunder is a team that is considered to having an outside shot of defeating the Golden State Warriors. Improving their outside shooting with Marco Belinelli gives them a better chance at doing so.
Marco Belinelli is not a one-dimensional player. Belinelli’s ability to play without the basketball and shoot off a pass makes him appealing to several teams.
That skill set is missing for the San Antonio Spurs due to the injuries to Kawhi Leonard and Rudy Gay. Marco Belinelli spent some time with the Spurs. His familiarity with the Spurs’ organization will help with their recruitment.
Another playoff contender reportedly in the running for Marco Belinelli is the Washington Wizards. According to NBC Sports Washington, the Wizards are making a strong push to sign Belinelli. If the Wizards can add him, Belinelli’s shooting can help propel them to a higher seeding.
There is an outside chance of Marco Belinelli landing with the Detroit Pistons or Minnesota Timberwolves. The NBA team Belinelli winds up playing for will get a much-needed boost.