In what was the first major move of the offseason, the Atlanta Hawks traded all-star point guard Jeff Teague to the Indiana Pacers while George Hill was shipped off to the Utah Jazz. Per Adrian Wojnarowski of The Vertical, the deal also sent the Jazz’s 12th overall pick to Atlanta.
Around the time of the trade deadline earlier this year, reports began swirling that the Hawks were actively shopping Teague but found no takers; notably, there were talks of a supposed deal between them and the New York Knicks that never came to life.
During the point guard renaissance, Teague’s numbers were overshadowed by his contemporaries. In 79 games for Atlanta this year, Teague averaged 15.7 points and 5.9 assists while knocking down 40 percent of his threes. His numbers are very solid but pale in comparison to guys like Stephen Curry, Russell Westbrook, and Damian Lillard. Those stats are also a reflection the Hawks as a team, where Teague had no issues sharing the offense with Paul Millsap and Al Horford.
With Teague departing, Dennis Schroder will slide into the starting point guard role. He’s shown steady improvement over the past three years, and the 11 points and 4.4 assists marked career-highs. Even more impressive is how Schroder’s per 36 minutes stats almost match Teague’s. According to the NBA, Schroder was better in rebounds, steals, and assists and was just three-tenths of a point behind Teague’s scoring total:
Schroder isn’t much of a shooter yet and makes silly mistakes at times, but he plays hard and looks to be fulfilling his potential.
With the trade Atlanta’s losing a speedy point guard with a tight handle and proven ability to run a team — more importantly, Teague is a clear upgrade from George Hill. In just 28.5 minutes per game, Teague eclipsed Hill in every major category and did so, reportedly, with a slight tear in his patella.
It gets even better for Indiana. Both players are making $8 million this year according to Basketball-Reference, meaning the Pacers get better production for the same price.
Utah made out pretty well in the deal as well. While Hill isn’t a premier point guard in the league, he’s a respectable three-point shooter (37.6 percent for his career) and a tenacious defender with long arms and active hands who will challenge Shelvin Mack and Raul Neto for the starting position.