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The Hawks are coming off an extra short summer, following a historically long offseason in 2020. Due to the sped-up NBA calendar, most fans are feeling a little disoriented and jetlagged. It's hard to imagine how teams are acclimating to the nonstop schedule. We know players' bodies didn't respond well last season, given the high number of injuries each team suffered.

Since we are still sailing in unchartered waters, it's more challenging than ever to predict outcomes for this upcoming season. Nevertheless, NBA Opening Week is tipping off tomorrow night, and it's time for everyone to spew their hottest of takes for the 2021-22 NBA season. Tomorrow I will discuss my predictions for the Hawks team as a whole, but right now, this is what I believe will happen for each individual player on the roster.

Trae Young

No surprise that the conversation begins with the heart and soul of the team. In three short seasons, Young revitalized the Hawks organization and energized the city. Yet, despite breaking numerous NBA records and leading the Hawks to the Eastern Conference Finals, the wiry 1-guard still doesn't get the respect he deserves.

Last year, Young was omitted from the All-Star Game as well as every All-NBA team. Quite frankly, that was embarrassing for the league and its voters. Despite the NBA recently changing rules that will alter Young's game, I fully expect him to make another leap in his fourth season.  League Awards: NBA All-Star Game Starter. All-NBA First Team. Stats Per Game: 26 PTS, 11 AST, 3 REB

Clint Capela

The Hawks big man led the league in rebounds despite a nagging Achilles injury that caused pain throughout last season. His toughness was on full display in the playoffs as he battled some of the league's best post players. Capela's hard work and resiliency paid off when he signed a new contract extension in September.

After spending the summer and much of training camp rehabilitating his right Achilles, Capela came back with a vengeance in the final preseason game. He is in great shape and ready to build upon his dominance last season. League Awards: NBA All-Star. NBA All-Defensive Second Team. Stats Per Game: 18 PTS, 14 REB, 2.5 BLK

John Collins

If Young is the most important player to the Hawks rebuild, Collins is a close second. His unrelenting energy has resulted in consistent improvement each year. It was great to see the Hawks front office reward Collins' stellar play with a 5-year, $125 million contract this past offseason.

Casual fans may not know much about 'John the Baptist,' but he continues to convert nonbelievers one dunk at a time. Naturally, Collins' numbers regressed when he shared the paint with Capela last season. However, a year of building chemistry with Capela matched by his continued development will equate to more production in his fifth season. Stats Per Game: 18 PTS, 9 REB, 1.5 BLK

Bogdan Bogdanovic

After missing most of January and all of February with an avulsion fracture in his right knee, Bogdanovic didn't miss a beat when he returned to action. It's no coincidence that the team took off on a winning streak when the sharpshooter was in the lineup.  As always, Bogdanovic sets lofty goals for himself. He has expressed his desire to be one of the best shooters in the league, and he will earn that recognition this season. Stats Per Game: 18 PTS, 3.5 AST, 3.5 REB

De'Andre Hunter

If Hunter remains healthy throughout the entire season, the Hawks will advance to the NBA Finals. Let that breathe for a second, as I will discuss the topic more tomorrow during predictions for the team. The 6'8 wing missed 49 regular season games last year before briefly returning for the playoffs and eventually being shut down again. In June, Hunter underwent surgery to debride the meniscus injury in his right knee.

When Hunter is in the lineup, he transforms the Hawks from an offensive delight to a well-oiled machine. Hunter is more than a glue guy. He is the perfect fitting slipper for this Cinderella team. Like Pascal Siakam in 2019, this will be Hunter's breakout season. League Awards: NBA Most Improved Player. Stats Per Game: 17 PTS, 2 AST, 5.5 REB

Kevin Huerter

When this article was published, there was still no contract extension agreed upon between Huerter and the Hawks. That means 'Red Velvet' will be a restricted free agent next summer. Much like John Collins motivated play last season, Huerter will play out of his mind in this contract year.

The Hawks sixth man is setting high expectations for himself when he says his goal is to shoot 40% from beyond the arc this season. I don't anticipate his average jumping up that much from 36.3% last season, but the rest of his game should continue to improve to make him a more complete two-way player. League Awards: Votes for NBA Sixth Man of the Year. Stats Per Game: 12.5 PTS, 4 AST, 1.5 STL

Cam Reddish

This is a pivotal season in the Reddish's career. I've written before about how no Hawks player evokes the manic reaction out of the fanbase than the former Duke Blue Devil. For every spin move that resembles Tracy McGrady, there is an ice-cold shooting night. The roller-coaster performances have resulted in trade rumors - none of which will come to fruition this season. Reddish is too valuable to the team this season. The real test will come next year when the team must decide on extending his contract. Stats Per Game: 10 PTS, 5 REB, 2 AST

Delon Wright

Coach McMillan finally got his long-sought-after backup point guard this summer when the team signed Wright. He fills a hole that has existed on the roster for years. The veteran guard will reinforce the second unit that often deteriorates when Young is on the bench. Stats Per Game: 8.5 PTS, 5 AST, 4.5 REB

Gorgui Dieng

The only other weak spot on the Hawks roster was the backup center position. Despite playing for Senegal this summer, Dieng's conditioning wasn't where Coach McMillan wanted it to be during the preseason. It looked like McMillan's plan was to run Dieng into shape by playing him big minutes. Even Coach Carter and Timo Cruz thought it was a bit excessive. All jokes aside, Dieng should average 10 minutes per game until Okongwu returns in December or January. Until then, it will be interesting to see how Dieng plays alongside Gallinari on the second unit. Stats Per Game: 6 PTS, 4 REB, 1 AST

Danilo Gallinari

It's hard to believe, but Gallo is the team's second-highest-paid player. Given the nature of his contract and his scoring ability, annoying trade rumors will dog him throughout the season. Putting all that aside, Gallinari entered training camp in better shape than last year and will still gladly light up your favorite team from outside. Stats Per Game: 12 PTS, 4 REB, 1.5 AST

Lou Williams

The underground goat is about to turn 35 and still shows no signs of slowing down. Williams' basketball I.Q. and instant offense make him an integral part of the rotation. It will be interesting to see how much playing time he gets on this ultra-deep roster. Stats Per Game: 10 PTS, 3 AST, 2 REB

Solomon Hill

At just 30-years-old, Hill is the third-oldest player on the Hawks. The veteran helped buoy the second unit in all 71 regular season games last season. I'm not sure if he averages 21 minutes per game again, but there is no doubt that Coach McMillan will look to the glue guy in a lot of different situations this season. Stats Per Game: 4 PTS, 3 REB, 1 AST

Jalen Johnson

The former Duke Blue Devil looked like the next Grant Hill at the NBA Summer League in August, before coming back down to earth during the preseason in October. The 19-year-old could not get his shot going in the 14.5 minutes he averaged in each preseason game. I'm not worried about Johnson, as he has a promising career ahead of him. My only hope is that he finds his way into a crowded rotation. Stats Per Game: 6 PTS, 2 REB, 1 AST

Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot

TLC was a late arrival to training camp and a long shot to win the final roster spot. Even though he didn't light it up during preseason, he beat out Jahlil Okafor and others for the 15th spot on the team. Although his contract isn't guaranteed, he has the chance to change that with his play, much like Solomon Hill did last season. Stats Per Game: 4 PTS, 2 REB, 1 AST

Onyeka Okongwu

The 6th pick of the 2020 NBA Draft battled a foot injury throughout his rookie season before flashing signs of brilliance in the playoffs. Unfortunately, Okongwu spent the crucial offseason rehabilitating from surgery to repair a torn labrum in his right shoulder. He is expected to make a full recovery and return to action by December or January. Of course, it will take some time for him to shake the rust off, but he will play valuable minutes in the playoffs again next spring. Stats Per Game: 6 PTS, 4 REB, 1 BLK

Skylar Mays, Sharife Cooper

Both guards looked good at the NBA Summer League, as well as the four preseason games. Given that they are both on two-way contracts, I'll save myself the embarrassment of trying to predict how their seasons will unfold. With that said, I'm high on both of these players.

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