REPORT: Mike Muscala Exercises Player Option, Returns to Hawks | Def Pen
Mike Muscala
Hawks forward Mike Muscala. (Curtis Compton/AJC)

Atlanta Hawks forward Mike Muscala has exercised his $5 million player option for the 2018-19 season, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.

Muscala will return to the Hawks for his sixth consecutive season with the team.

With Muscala’s decision, the Hawks project to enter free agency with roughly $20 million in cap space, according to ESPN’s Bobby Marks. Only 12 of the team’s 15 players have guaranteed contracts.

Muscala, 26, appeared in 53 games with the Hawks this past season. A 6-foot-11 forward who can shoot from distance, Muscala averaged 7.6 points and 4.3 rebounds in 20 minutes per contest.

Along with Muscala, Hawks center Dewayne Dedmon also opted in to his contract this month for the 2018-’19 season. Muscala had until Friday, June 29 to inform the Hawks of his decision.

Muscala was drafted by the Mavericks in 2013 with the No. 44 overall pick, with the team later trading him to Atlanta. He attended Bucknell University and played all four seasons before then.

The Hawks jump-started their rebuild project during the NBA Draft this past Thursday, choosing young scorer Trae Young as their cornerstone piece to build around. They remain interested in finding a trade partner to take on the contract of Dennis Schroder at some point this summer.

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