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NBA Trade Deadline 2012: Atlanta Hawks Could Be Looking To Make A Move, Although Dwight Howard Is Unlikely

The Atlanta Hawks are in the thick of the playoff hunt. As the NBA trade deadline draws near, they may be looking to make a move to ensure they stay competitive.

SB Nation's own Tom Ziller took a look at the wants and needs of the Hawks at the trade deadline, as well as potential targets.

Frankly, the Hawks need Al Horford back. The big Dominican is the franchise's best player, and though Atlanta stayed strong in the immediate aftermath of his pectoral injury, things have begun to fall apart. On the season, the Hawks are now just about break-even in center matchups, according to Before the injury, Horford had been destroying the competition.

Early in the season, there were murmurs that Atlanta would make a play for native son Dwight Howard, perhaps offering up Horford. If Howard signals that he would sign a long-term contract with the Hawks, it's a no-brainer deal for both sides. Howard is one of the few big men better than Horford, and the Dominican is far better than the current Howard exchange rate, Brook Lopez.

If Atlanta is forced by Howard's enigmatic wish list to aim lower, Kevin Garnett is an intriguing option. Even at this stage of his career, KG is worth a first-round pick and maybe a prospect. If Boston looks to retool, there could be a match here.

The Hawks could also stand to upgrade the reserve wings. Willie Green, Tracy McGrady, Jannero Pargo and Vladimir Radmanovic are getting a whole lot of minutes.

So while the Hawks are unlikely to be in the market for a superstar like Dwight Howard, they may pick up a veteran such as Garnett or look to improve their bench.

For all news and information regarding the Atlanta Hawks, please visit Peachtree Hoops.

Photographs by coka_koehler used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.