Ferry got his first opportunity to run a team in 2005 when he was named GM of the Cleveland Cavaliers. Ferry was responsible for bringing in players like Mo Williams, Antawn Jamison, and Shaquille O’Neal to help LeBron James. During this run the Cavs routinely finished atop of the league and even played in a NBA finals but LeBron received most of the glory for the success as well as the blame for the failures and when James left Ferry did so as well soon after. About a week ago Ferry took on another GM job and in that one week completely change that organization around.
The Atlanta Hawks were once considered a team on the rise but about two years ago they reached their ceiling and didn’t have anymore room to rise. The Hawks became a perpetual 5th to 4th seed team and were on the books for a lot of money for the next few years. The Previous Hawk brain trust were content with just being a good team. They knew that they didn’t have a shot at ever winning a championship but hey, at least we’re in the playoffs.
Ferry came in and knew that big things had to be done even if it meant getting rid of the player that was considered the franchise. I don’t think it was a question of if you get rid of Johnson but how. Johnson’s age combined with the number of years and the amount of money left on the contract made Joe damn near impossible to trade. But like any good hustler Ferry took advantage of a person in a desperate state to make the deal he needed to make. The Brooklyn Nets are determined to make a splash in their first season in Brooklyn and took on the ridiculous contract of Johnson in hopes that it will entice Daron Williams to resign. I personally think this a trade that will help both teams but the Hawks are the ultimate winners because they now have some flexibility. Ferry wanted more flexibility and somehow got rid of the Hawks second bad contract in Marvin Williams for Devin Harris.
Now the future is looking brighter in the ATL. They now have two options. They are now big players in the Dwight Howard sweepstakes by eliminating the greatest threat in the Nets, because they no longer have the cap space. They can offer Horford and Teague in a trade for Howard, then hope he wants to sign long-term and play with his friends Josh Smith and Anthony Morrow. Or they can play the season with team as currently constructed and finish between 6th to 4th seed like they would have anyway but at the end of the season have enough cash to go after Howard and Chris Paul if they want. The free agent class has the opportunity to have a lot of young talent to choose from and the big thing is thanks to Ferry the Hawks will have a choice.