Pierce: Excluding Hawks from season return 'hurts our growth'
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Atlanta Hawks head coach Lloyd Pierce is hopeful his team will still have a role to play if the 2019-20 season resumes.

NBA owners are reportedly expected to approve commissioner Adam Silver's plan that would invite 20-22 teams to Orlando this summer to restart the suspended campaign. If Thursday's vote passes, the Hawks, who were second-last in the East at 20-47, will likely not receive an invite.

Lloyd argues that not including Atlanta in the resumption of the season in some way would stunt the development of several young players on the roster.

"If the season is going to resume and we're still not a part of it, it hurts our growth, it hurts our product, it hurts our ability to continue the momentum that we need going into next season," Pierce told Rachel Nichols on ESPN's "The Jump."

Though the Hawks employ the oldest player in the NBA in Vince Carter, the squad is one of the league's youngest on average. The players in Atlanta's most frequently used starting lineup - Trae Young, Kevin Huerter, Cam Reddish, De'Andre Hunter, and John Collins - are all between the ages of 20 and 22.

"I play young guys. I have young guys," Pierce said. "They need game experience and so we need to play basketball. We want to play basketball."

He added, "We're on our Zoom meetings, Thursdays and Sundays, and our guys want to do it. But we also understand there's so many scenarios, and we're all anxiously waiting to find out where we sit in that. And then whatever the course of action that happens, we'll continue to find ways to get better as an organization with our guys."

Pierce: Excluding Hawks from season return 'hurts our growth'
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