It’s looking like the new-look Atlanta Hawks are taking shape quicker than many thought. After already agreeing to a deal to ship Joe Johnson to the Brooklyn Nets, new Hawks GM Danny Ferry has reportedly agreed to send small forward Marvin Williams to the Utah Jazz for point guard Devin Harris.
Williams, the Hawks overall number two pick in the 2005 NBA Draft, has two years left on his current deal, while Harris is in the final year of his contract. It would seem Hawks ownership decided that trading Williams for Harris was a better move than just using the one-time amnesty clause to remove Williams’ salary off the Hawks’ books in either of the upcoming off-seasons.
This would potentially open the door for Hawks free-agent forward Ivan Johnson, who Atlanta made a qualifying offer to on Monday, to see more playing time, as well as providing some potential minutes for second-round draft pick Mike Scott.
Shedding the contracts of both Williams and Johnson will open up huge opportunities for the Hawks, who were getting concussions from banging their heads on the salary cap ceiling.
Williams has spent his entire 7-year NBA career with the Hawks, posting career averages of 11.5 points, 5.2 rebounds and 1.2 assists. He was on the Hawks books for $8.3 million in 2012-13 and $7.5 million in 2013-14.
Harris, as the staring point guard for the Jazz, averaged 11.3 points and 5.0 assists last season. He’s set to make $8.5 million in 2012-13, the final year of his contract. Harris would give the Hawks a great one-two punch at point guard with incumbent Jeff Teague.
Danny Ferry may well be on his way to Executive of the Year consideration.