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Marvin Williams: A Requiem in the Key of Farewell


No, Marvin Williams has not passed away, but he has passed on to Salt Lake City and then end of his Hawks career.

We participated in a cross-blog information gathering session with @AllThatAmar from SLC Dunk which bore fruits in terms of details around Devin Harris yesterday.

For Peachtree Hoops part, I sent over a brief, 400 word essay which I feel best captures Marvin's history here. What you will not find in here are any mentions of his trademark duck/dump walk, his inability to control rebounds or his infamous mustache, because, frankly, my tender heart couldn't have handled it.

Instead, you got the rest -- here it is:

Marvin Williams was always about what he wasn't for Atlanta rather than what he was.

He wasn't Chris Paul or Deron Williams, that was #1.

He wasn't the uber-athlete that was going to be instant offense, that was #2.

He wasn't going to produce near what the Hawks though when they made him the #2 pick in the 2005 draft, that was #3.

Marvin Williams struggled to find his place in the NBA and you could make the point that, at times, he is still searching. One season, like the one he had in 2008-2009, you feel he's got it. Marvin added the three point shot to his arsenal, raised all of his advanced statistics and became an important part of the Hawks rotation. After returning from an injury, missing over a dozen games, he was so missed that his return inspired a standing ovation from the Philips Arena crowd. This was his Age 22 season and things looked good.

That offseason, Marvin signed a 5 year, 37 million dollar contract as a restricted free agent without an offer from another team. Given his age and his improvement, it seemed a fair price for a rotational piece of a team, at that time, rising up the standings.

Since then, Marvin has fallen back into an inconsistent producer, sometimes providing exactly what the Hawks needed from him and sometimes looking like that rookie who wasn't sure when he should attack or when to pull up. Neither Larry Drew nor the fans seemed to be united on whether Marvin should be starting or that playing with the second unit would suit him and/or the team best.

After that Age 22 season, Marvin struggled to get back to even that level over the next three seasons, coming closest last season. In between the team tried to deal him at every moment, almost immediately understanding that he wasn't moving forward as they had hoped after the '08-'09 campaign.

Marvin himself is a thoughtful individual who has taken his ups and downs in stride. He never caused public trouble on the team and never groused about his role (or lack of one) to the media. He knows the magic behind solving the Rubik's Cube. He's a good guy who likely needed this change to Salt Lake City to get out from under who he wasn't and just be about who he is, whoever that may be.