Marvin Williams learned a long time ago that you don't count your blessings until they actually arrive.Same with your money, or anything else earned.
That's why he wasn't moved earlier this summer when Internet reports of him agreeing to and signing a new deal with the Hawks spread like Hollywood gossip.
"It was crazy to look on the Internet and see stuff about me signing with the Hawks or that I was staying with the Hawks," Williams said. "Yet there was never anyone quoted. It was always some anonymous person saying it was done or saying it was going to happen."
Well, it finally happened. Williams signed his new deal -- a five-year, $37.5 million contract with the Hawks, a deal that with incentives could be worth as much as $43 million -- and said he couldn't be happier to be free of the summer's free agent frenzy.
"I knew from past years with Josh (Smith) and Josh (Childress) that this process could take some time," Williams said. "But I was patient. I tried to be patient. And, thankfully, things worked out."
Williams said the sides were never as far apart as reported and that talks actually "got better" as the summer went on. As a restricted free agent, he could have accepted the Hawks' qualifying offer of $7.5 million and become an unrestricted free agent in July 2010.
But with the Hawks still on the climb, he wanted to finish what he and his teammates have already started.
"We've all grown together," Williams said. "The one thing you hardly ever see in professional sports is that loyalty and teams staying together. When you do see it, like in San Antonio or Detroit when they kept their core guys together, you see championships. I think that's everybody's goal here. We've all started off together young in this league and if we get a chance to grow old together, I think we can do some pretty special things."