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Illinois Basketball: Coleman Hawkins Works out for Defending NBA Champions



Illinois Basketball: Class of 2024 Visits Campus.
Jan 24, 2023; Champaign, Illinois, USA; Illinois Fighting Illini forward Coleman Hawkins (33) applauds a score during the first half against the Ohio State Buckeyes at State Farm Center. Mandatory Credit: Ron Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

Illinois Basketball: Coleman Hawkins Works out for Defending NBA Champions

As Illinois Basketball continues to figure out their roster for next season, it is becoming increasingly clear that they are unlikely to return one of their stars. Coleman Hawkins did not light the world on fire at the NBA combine, however his skillset is extremely intriguing. The 6 foot 10 forward can facilitate, defend multiple positions and has a promising shooting stroke. In the NBA, Coleman will not have to do as much. Due to this, having his skillset is an important piece to have. Players like Nic Claxton, Xavier Tillman and Jaxson Hayes found ways to play on NBA rosters just by playing a role and having defensive versatility. Coleman has that same ability.

Hawkins has made it very clear that he would obviously prefer to go to the NBA, no matter how good Illinois projects to be. On Thursday, a report came out that Coleman will work out for the Golden State Warriors.

The Right situation

Coleman Hawkins has worked out for the Nets, Celtics, Rockets and Thunder. Despite this, I think if Coleman Hawkins can land on a playoff team, he can actually find a way to stick onto a roster. The Miami Heat currently have many undrafted players playing significant roles for them in the Eastern Conference Finals. Landing in the proper scenario is so vital. If Duncan Robinson landed anywhere else in the league, one has to question if he would actually stick. Having continuity has been so key for him. Joe Wieskamp is currently on his second team in two seasons, he has yet to make an impact, despite having a strong three point stroke.

Max Strus has found a home in Miami, however he was cut by the Celtics and the Chicago Bulls. Out of the teams that Coleman has worked out for, the Thunder, Nets and Kings own the 50th, 51st and 54th pick respectively.

As for Terrence Shannon Jr?

Terrence Shannon Jr seems much more open to another year in Champaign. He clearly enjoyed his time at Illinois and never seemed as frustrated and annoyed as Coleman Hawkins was regarding his college teammates. However, there is a report that Shannon Jr will workout for the Orlando Magic. The Magic currently hold the 36th pick, which seems like an ideal draft projection. Terrence Shannon’s approach seems much more geared towards having a guaranteed contract. If the Chicago native can do well in his workout, he may receive that.

If that is the case, Illinois would be unlikely to get either of their stars back. With the recent buzz regarding their hopes for point guard, Brad Underwood has his work cut out for him.

Alex is the Owner of, your go-to source for in depth coverage of the Illinois Fighting Illini. Alex is also the lead content creator and lead editor of all articles on Armchair Illini. He has had articles featured in top media publications like Bleacher Report, YardBarker, Verbal Commits, CBS Sports and more.