The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the trade had not been announced.
In a separate deal, the Nets traded Coney Island native Whitehead to Denver, in exchange for Faried - who is from Newark - Darrell Arthur, a 2019 first-round pick (protected 1-through-12) and a future second-round pick.
Lin's time with the Nets was plagued by injury.
Russell could be in line for a rookie-scale extension, but he will have to show more than what he has during his 48 games as a Net to warrant the franchise taking a long-term gamble on his future.
Lin, 29, played just one game last season after rupturing the patellar tendon in his right knee in the season opener against the Indiana Pacers on October 18.
Now, Lin will have to find room in Atlanta, where point guard Dennis Schroder was the Hawks' leading scorer last season. He's entering the final year of his contract after playing eight seasons, including stints with the Knicks, Rockets, Lakers and Hornets.
Faried, 28, played in 32 games (seven starts) for Denver last season, averaging 5.9 points and 4.8 rebounds.