Hawks Sign Shelden Williams


ATLANTA, GA (July 10, 2006) -- Atlanta Hawks Executive Vice President and General Manager Billy Knight today announced the team has signed the first of its two 2006 draft picks - Duke's Shelden Williams to a contract. As is club policy, the terms of his contact were not revealed.

Williams, the Hawks' first round selection - and fifth pick overall - was the National Defensive Player of the Year in 2004-05 and a two-time Atlantic Coast Conference honoree in that category as evidenced by his averages of 3.8 blocks and 1.7 steals last season. The 6-9, 250-pound forward also tossed in a career-high 18.7 points and 10.7 rebounds, in addition to hitting 58.4% of his field goals and 74 percent of his FTs.

Williams also became the third player in NCAA annals to record at least 1,500 points, 1,000 rebounds, 350 blocked shots and 150 steals, joining Navy's David Robinson and Louisville's Pervis Ellison in achieving that mark. A first team All-America by The Associated Press as a senior, Williams finished his career as the Blue Devils' career leader in three categories: blocks (422, 5th in ACC history), blocks per game (3.04, 6th) and rebounds (1,262, 6th). He is also fifth all-time at Duke in career FG percentage (.572) and 12th in team history with 1,928 points.

Williams starts his pro career this afternoon by competing in the Hawks rookie-free agent mini-camp in Atlanta (July 10-13) before departing with the rest of the summer league squad that will participate in the Rocky Mountain Revue (July 14-21) in Salt Lake City, Utah.