The new and improved Marvin Williams will be on full display in a little over month.His teammates have already gotten a glimpse of the Hawks' starting small forward, who has packed on about 15 pounds of muscle to the 6-9, 230-pound frame he finished last season with in that playoff loss to Boston.
Everyone else will have to wait until the start of training camp to see how the 245-pound Williams compares to the lighter version. But if the early reviews are any indication, no one will be disappointed.
When asked which of his teammates will make the biggest splash in training camp, Josh Smith didn't hesitate.
"I'd have to say Marvin," Smith said. "People know him as a mid-range jump shooter but he's added more to his game. He's got counter moves and being able to get to the hole and he's even doing moves in the post that I haven't seen him do before. I think he's going to surprise a lot of people."
Williams has added plenty of new wrinkles to his game, too.
"As always I'm just trying to get better," he said. "I've been shooting a ton of (three-pointers). I've definitely been working on the 3-ball. And I've put on a lot of weight, too. I'm up to about 245 with seven percent body fat. I'm as big and strong as I've ever been. I'm finally starting to fill out my frame and it feels good."
The increased attention to his outside game is every bit as surprising as the weight gain. But both were calculated moves.
"I shot them my rookie year but I didn't shoot many last year, maybe 10 or so," Williams said of his long range shooting. "Five or six of those were from half court, too. But I feel like that's something I can add to my game that will make me more of a threat. A lot of people feel I can shoot that shot. It's something I've got to continue working on to get better."
Getting bigger doesn't always mean getting better. But Williams isn't worried.
"I was 233 last year, but I actually feel like I'm moving a lot better," he said. "I've been running sprints on the track and my times are better than they've ever been. I think a lot of it is just natural maturation. It's like my Dad always said, I was so young when I came into the league. It was just a matter of time before my body developed. I just turned 22 two months ago, man. Everybody has to go through this."