Originally Posted by hawkfan
I guess that is debateable, it's been a while, but I remember that for the most part Marvin was considered the consensus no. 2 pick because of his potential, height and athleticism. He was expected to be a 20 ppg scorer, which clearly he has not turned out to be. If he had been close to that, then the pick would have been a success. Of course, Marvin's laziness and lack of work ethic has certainly played a significant part in his lack of growth.
That said, it was clearly boneheaded not to pick Paul or Deron Williams.
At the time it was just a bad decision but in hindsight it is elevated to a historically atrocious decision. Once the NBA season ended that year I remember thinking we are finally gonna get a point guard, Deron or Chris Paul. I preferred Chris but Billy Knight didn't like him b/c he felt he was too small. This is even after Chris Paul publicly stated he wanted to get drafted by the Hawks and, as he even now says, had his best workout with the Hawks.
But Billy Knight, as I heard him say many times on Atl sports talk radio, didn't believe in specific positions like the 1, 2, 3 or 4. His dream was to have a center and the other 4 players to be interchangeable 6ft7 to 6ft9 swingmen. That's why a year after drafting 6ft8 Josh Childress with the 6th pick and 6ft9 Josh Smith with the 17th pick, he drafted 6ft8 Marvin Williams with the 2nd pick. At the time it made absolutely no sense to me especially considering the need we had at point guard with Paul and Deron available. I think I am right when I say prior to Acie LAw, in all Billy Knight's years as a GM, he had never drafted a guard in the 1st rd. He believed in his interchangeable theory to the point where. and people have forgotten now, but Joe Johnson was signed to be our point guard. When it became painfully obvious after about 10 games that he's not a pg, we had to go to the backup plan: Royal Ivey.
And that is why I really believe we didn't draft Chris Paul. The year of the Paul draft was the same summer we signed Joe Johnson. Billy Knight didn't see the need at point that any other reasonable person did b/c he was gonna offer JJ max money to be his point guard and surround Joe with the 3 forwards he had drafted in the 1st round the previous 2 drafts. I am being 100% honest when I say, at the time, drafting Marvin made no sense to me considering the talent available in the draft at a position of need. I at least tried to make myself feel better by saying Marvin is supposed to be talented so if he turns out to be this start others are saying he can become it'll mitigate the problems not drafting a point guard will cause. But we all know what ended up happening with Marvin . . .