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The Hawks have options in second round of NBA draft

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Wes Wilcox loves the second round of the NBA draft.

The Hawks assistant general manager knows there are gems to be found in the latter stages of the draft. The Hawks are scheduled to make two second-round selections in Thursday's draft -- Nos. 50 and 59 -- to go with their first-round pick. Wilcox will swing and take his chances. The second round is an exercise in hit or miss.

Just check the Hawks' roster to see hits. All-Stars Paul Millsap and Kyle Korver and Shelvin Mack were all taken the second round. Mike Scott and Mike Muscala are recent second-round acquisitions, either by draft or draft-night trade.

There have also been misses. Remember Sergiy Gladyr and Pape Sy?

There are several scenarios that could unfold Thursday night with those second-round picks. All depend on what the Hawks do in the first round.

As it currently stands, the Hawks don't really have a roster spot for a player they would pick in the second round. They could select an international player who will remain overseas to develop. They could also pick an American player who would play internationally to develop, as was the case with last year's second-rounders Edy Tavares and Lamar Patterson. Tavares spend the season in Spain's ACB League and Patterson played in Turkey.

"We spend a lot of time on the international market and studying the international players," Wilcox said. "We believe in the value of international guys."

A trade involving one or both second-rounders is a real possibility. The Hawks have assets. They could package the picks to move up from No. 15 in the first round if a player they like falls down the board. While the Hawks won't give up what it would take to move into the top four spots, they could move up anywhere from Nos. 5-14.

The Hawks also have an extra second-round pick next year, the final piece of the 2012 Joe Johnson trade with the Nets. Add that asset and the Hawks could move to attain a late first-round or early second-round spot for a player like LSU power forward Jordan Mickey.

The Hawks roster is crowded with eight players under contract next season. They also have four unrestricted free agents, two of whom they will make a big push to keep in DeMarre Carroll and Millsap.

Pero Antic is a restricted free agent. Add the first-round pick and the Hawks have Austin Daye on a non-guaranteed contract, Tavares, Patterson and potential second-rounders vying for two spots.

The Hawks like to keep an open roster spot for flexibility during the season and at the trade deadline. Ultimately, there could be one roster spot open.

Free agency starts July 1 and will be a factor in the Hawks' roster next season, especially if they lose Carroll or Millsap or both.

"I would say it's unlikely that, although we have three picks, it's unlikely that three players from this draft are on our team next year," Wilcox said. "Is it one, two or none? It's premature to say. We have been looking and studying where the opportunities may be in the international market, whether that is at 15 or 50 and 59."

Note: For the third straight year, the Hawks will open training camp on the campus of the University of Georgia.

The Hawks will hold media day in advance of the 2015-16 NBA season on Sept. 28. They will be at Georgia for the next three days from Sept. 29-Oct. 1.

The Hawks have opened training camp on the road in each of the seasons under coach Mike Budenholzer.

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