Hawks exercise 2007-08 options for Smith, Childress, M. Williams

ATLANTA (Ticker) - The Atlanta Hawks are clearly looking ahead to the future.

The Hawks on Monday exercised the contract options on swingmen Josh Smith and Josh Childress and forward Marvin Williams for the 2007-08 season.

Smith and Childress were both first-round picks in 2004, while Williams was selected second overall in 2005.

“This move is reflective of the tremendous progress all three of these young men have made in their brief NBA careers,” Hawks executive vice president and general manager Billy Knight said. “Individually and collectively, they have established themselves as important parts of our nucleus, they are great fan favorites, and we feel they will continue to elevate their games moving forward.”

Taken 17th overall in 2004, the 20-year-old Smith began to develop in a complete player in his second season with Atlanta, ranking second in the league in total blocks (208) while finishing fourth on the team in scoring with 11.3 points per game.

Smith, who also averaged 6.6 rebounds and 2.4 assists last season, is the youngest player in NBA history to reach 300 blocks, rejecting 352 shots in 154 career games.

Childress, the sixth player selected in 2004, averaged 10.0 points, 5.2 rebounds and 1.8 assists in 74 games this past season. The 23-year-old also grabbed 1.2 steals, finishing 13th in the league in steals-to-turnover ratio (0.85).

Williams, 20, earned All-Rookie second team honors after scoring 8.5 points and grabbing 4.9 rebounds in 79 games.

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Updated Monday, Aug 28, 2006