Elliot Williams draft profile


Elliot Williams (Memphis) -
6'4, 180 lbs., SG

At 6'4, he is a slightly undersized shooting guard in the NBA.  However, Williams will be one of the most athletic players to play in the NBA next year.  With long arms, quick feet, quick hops, and cat-like reflexes with his hands.  He should terrorize opponents with his defense for a long time in the NBA.  

Due to Medical Concerns in his family, Williams transferred to Memphis to be closer to his mother.  At Memphis, he was the go-to-guy, and lived up to the billing his high-school ranking provided.  He starred as the main feature in a drive and kick offense, which plays to his strengths, getting to the rack and finishing with acrobatic shots or passing out to the open shooter.  

Williams is not a point-guard, rather a playmaking shooting guard.  As a lefty, he has an advantage in playing against the natural tendencies of defenders to guard the right.  He has one of the quickest steps in this draft, and finishes well with his left, but is a one-handed player.

Williams is a streaky shooter, but at least shows flashes as evidenced by his 36% three-point shooting last season.  As the season went along, teams started forcing him to go right and finish right, which forced him to become more hesitant and not produce as effectively.  However, in the NBA, the name of the game is speed and he will produce plenty of speed and defense.  An adjustment of Williams will be playing off the ball and adding to his ability to finish right-handed.  

Perhaps a little over the top, but Williams has the ability to generate steals and fluster offensive players like a prime Gary Payton.  Using a non-stop motor and quick feet, he shuts down opposing ball-handlers.  In fact, I believe he is a better on the ball defender than heralded Avery Bradley of Texas.  The only adjustment required for the NBA is additional strength which comes wilt time in an NBA workout program.

How does his game translate to the NBA?

Overall, Williams possesses several NBA caliber qualities to become a quality starting shooting guard in the league eventually.  He is a little raw, but he should defend immediately in the league.   He needs to develop his jumper and right hand in order to find success at the next level.   His weaknesses limit his immediate impact, but if he can work through them he has a good ceiling.  A team could find a late round steal in Williams if they groom him properly and he learns to fix his weaknesses.   He has top 10 pick upside for a late 1st round pick.  Williams reminds me of a much more raw shooting guard version of Russell Westbrook at best or Jrue Holiday.

How does he fit with the Bulls?

Right now, with Rose working at the helm, it is hard to see Williams meshing well because they have similar games.  Williams doesn't provide nearly enough shooting to fill our gap in that area as a two guard, but he does have defensive potential. .He's unlikely to realize his full potential due to his fit here, and thus isn't likely to carry much trade value either.  Though his athleticism gives him a higher ceiling than other guards profiled here, his flaws and poor fit make him an unlikely candidate.



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  • Going to his right is the major knock on this kid from what I hear.

    I haven't really seen him play, but I hear good things about him on the court and off. I guess he is a really good CHARACTER GUY with UPSIDE, which is what John Paxson and Gar Forman seem to like.

    He's somewhat intrigueing to me as a backcourt-mate to Rose.

  • Kevin,

    I don't know if heard or not, but the Bulls are going to be working out LAZAR HAYWARD.

    Could the have intentions of buying a 2nd round pick? Or perhaps JJ is on his way out of town?

    Given the success of a more mature TAJ GIBSON, maybe the Bulls intend to add a MATURE SG and SF with SKILLS in this upcoming draft. Keep an eye on LAZAR HAYWARD and QUINCY PONDEXTER.

  • In reply to MrHappy:

    He is an undersized power forward at 6'6'; doesn't have the lateral quickness to guard small forwards.

  • MrHappy,

    Lazar is a deep secod round draft pick. I go to MU and I am not sure he will get drafted. We are ooking at aot of undrafted guys to bring into SL.

    IN regards to Elliot, I am not in favor of any guards who is either small or cant shoot. He is both. We do need defense on the perimeter, but we can use the pick for other things. Maybe even in a trade.

  • In reply to 1096ballenf:


    It wouldn't shock me to see the Bulls trade into the 2nd Round.

    They could use a new back-up SF. Dickey has entered BUST-ville.

  • In reply to 1096ballenf:

    The thing i like about Paul George is that he is long and versitile. Plus he has even said he wants to play SG in the NBA. Say the Bulls do land LeBron James....LeBron will probably start at the 2 with Deng at 3...Once Deng comes out, Move LeBron to the 3 and throw George in at the 2. The Bulls backcourt would be incredible long and hard to score against. Just like the Lakers last year, they had Ariza causes havoc to other teams smaller guards...i see that out of George.

  • In reply to 1096ballenf:


    What do you think of this trade idea?

    To Bulls: Jeff Foster, Solomon Jones and the #10 Pick in the draft
    To Pacers: Kirk Hinrich and the #17 pick in the draft

    NOTES: Larry Bird said he is shopping for a veteran PG.

    Hinrich would give the Pacers the vertan PG they need and the Bulls could land a SG.

    (James Anderson, Xavier Henry or Paul George might be gone if they don't trade-up.)

    *** Also, Indiana has a good history with #17. They snatched Granger and Hibbert at #17.

  • In reply to 1096ballenf:

    I watched a good amount of Memphis games, and the more I saw of Elliot Williams the less interested it made me. He doesn't have good size for the position and he has too many holes in his game. I think he'll be a second rounder if he makes the mistake of working out with Jordan Crawford. Who is by far a more well rounded player when compared to Williams.

    Watching Williams this season, I found myself being more interested in Wesley Witherspoon. The Bulls shouldn't touch Williams with a ten foot pole at 17.

  • In reply to JimmyBulls:

    He's 6'4 and is an athletic freak. He has holes, but he has strengths too.

  • In reply to JimmyBulls:

    From what I saw, Williams have "James White" athleticism. By that I mean, he will look extremely athletic during warmups or one on none breaks, but I didn't see his athletic gifts a whole lot during the natural flow of the game. If he could handle the ball better than maybe it will show more in the flow of the game. But until he fills that hole in his game, I'd have to consider him to be more of a freakish layup line athlete than a freak athlete during the actual flow of the game.

  • Ill pass....theres 5 of these guys in the 2nd round. No need to waste a 1st rounder for him.

  • Elliot Williams was my guy for a while this season. Then came the overplay of his left hand, and the "no right hand/amputee" was exposed. I do think some of these guys actually do worse in college do to the zone mentality/swarming/keying on one star where in the NBA you have to be damn good before you even command a double team/there's more freedom to work with.

    Elliot Williams is supposed to be a good attitude guy/hard worker. He looked dedicated/persistent on the court, but I never saw much out of him that evidenced leadership. Memphis new coach Josh Pastner is supposed to be a young phenom/prodigy, but I didn't see it with the team's lackluster often confused identitiy/demeanor.

    Regardless(or irregardless as some like to say) Elliot Williams is an athletic freak. I watched him play in at least five games. Against the UAB Blazers( a conference game) at home, he took his last dribble outside the three point line, bounded into the lane, and went up and dunked. I've never seen anyone do that.

    He has over 4 three point attempts per game, and until later in the season when everyone ganged up on his weak hand, and he lost his ability to drive/confidence he was shooting over 40% from three. He shoots 75% free throws.

    Look, he has no mid range game, little right hand(I've seen worse/Demar DeRozan), but he in open space with a very good lefty and freakishly long strides yoy see from star type players. And defensively the kicker is he's lock down potential. I mean I haven't seen a better one on one defender at times all year. But off the abll no activity/awareness/agressiveness/steals. If I knew more about his attitude demeanor I might be seriousloy tempted. But I don't like to gamble.

    Honestly, my No.1 for the Bulls is Dominique Jones. As I've said, I think his athleticism is vastly underrated. He has Wade like rebounding numbers back to back in the Big East. His shot is streaky, but his mid range and inside game is for real. He just has an uncanny and very impressive knack for scoring in the lane especially now with a devesatating floater he has incorporated into his game. Plus competetive wise/attitide I see nothing but good things. Likewise Ekpe udoh. If not for his(Ekpe's) attitude I would probably pass do to questions on on will he be a volume scorer/producer.

    So My No. 1 is Dominique Joneslook at his stats he's underrated and had a 1.5 A/TO one in a season which is good for any non-point/SG. He's the one. Second is Ekpe Udoh. And he could end up giving you more scoring the you think/he's skilled. Then after that it's James Anderson very sterile persona no right hand, but killer socirng abilities nonetheless. Finally Paul George simply because his handles are not great, and the non-chalant attitude thing just puts him down at the bottom for me. But still like his potential is huge.

  • In reply to MarkNorman:

    Road Warrior; you know your stuff. Right now Elliot to me is not a fit for the Bulls. However, I think on the right team, he could be a great success.

    As for Jones, I will post something soon. I like some of his skills, but I don't know if some will translate. He gets to the lane, but he doesn't have the explosiveness that I want from a slightly undersized guard. I do like him in the late 1st though! I do like Udoh and I can understand concerns with George, but I like his upside coupled w/ an already established shot.

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