The Atlanta Hawks made a take-it-or-leave it offer of $90 million over four seasons to John Collins before the start of the season, sources tell The Athletic. Collins felt he should have received a more lucrative contract offer.
Because Collins declined the offer, he will be a restricted free agent this offseason and could also be traded.
Collins expects to be with the Hawks past the deadline and is not planning on entering the offseason only looking for the max.
“For me, there wasn’t necessarily a single number. There’s never been a single number,” Collins said. “I’ve never said, ‘I need a max or I’m only taking a max.’ All I said with my play and what I’ve done, I feel like I should be in max contention or I should be in the caliber or realm of guys who do what I do on the court. That’s all I said. There was never, ‘Oh, I need a five-year max.’ I’ve never said any of that. I just said I felt like I played myself into great position to be talked about with those other guys and be it as it may. That’s what I said. I felt like my play spoke for me and I wanted to continue to let it do that but obviously there are different narratives that are being taken. There’s a lot of stuff that can be misconstrued when it comes to stuff like this. It’s just something I have to take in stride and keep going.”
Collins would ultimately prefer to remain with Atlanta.
“I want to stay. I want my flowers here in Atlanta,” Collins said. “I want to be true to Atlanta for my entire career, as corny or as cheesy as it may sound to whoever. As a basketball player and as someone who takes pride in their job, me being drafted in the organization and me living here and becoming a man and living my life in the NBA as a Hawk means something to me. It might not mean a lot to other people but I want to be here. I want my future to be here. I want to think about my future here but the reality of the situation is stuff doesn’t always go the way I want it to. All I can do to make sure my future is as good as it can be is make sure I’m the best player I can be and wake up every day and figure it out.”