Why Robert Williams III is the Big the Celtics Needed

Robert Williams III is the Celtic's starter at Center. This season, he is averaging 9.8 PPG, 9.5 TRB, 2 APG, and 2 BPG. A double-double every game, while giving you some valuable playmaking, efficient scoring and all-NBA level defense. All at an elite true shooting percentage of 74.4%. A big reason for the Celtic's recent 4 game win streak, Robert Williams is the big that the Celtics have needed for a very long time. He adds the defense inside that we have lacked, and as a player, has made the leap to be considered a true force in the NBA. Since January 1st, Robert Williams is averaging 10 PPG, 10.9 RPG, 2.3 APG, 1.1 SPG, 2.6 BPG, a TS% of 74.3 and a league-best 96.7 defensive rating.

From Nothing to Something

(AP Photo/Charles Krupa)AP

Early on in his career, he was plagued by injuries, and was a question mark on defense, causing some to doubt whether or not he would be a legitimate player in the NBA. In July of 2018, Williams was revealed to be diagnosed with popliteal artery entrapment syndrome. Since then, doctors and team personnel have cleared him to play, while consistently monitoring the situation. Williams has gone from playing only 29 games and starting in just one game at 13.4 minutes played per game, during the 2019-20 season, to playing and starting in 43 games at 29.8 minutes per game in the 2031-22 season.

While other players have made that same type of leap during the league's history, few have managed to actually increase their efficiency. In his rookie season, Williams had a true shooting percentage of 70.3%. Now, he is shooting 74.4%, number one in the league. 


His career best game, played on December 22nd of last year, shows a glimpse of greatness that the front office has keyed in. Williams' defensive rating this season is 102.2, the second best in the entire league after Rudy Gobert. The Celtics owe a big part of their status as the best defensive team to Williams, as well as the rest of the cast, Marcus Smart, Jayson Tatum, and Jaylen Brown. Smart, Tatum, and Brown are also present near the top of the best defensive rating list

(Jim Davis // global staff)

Williams is unique in the way that he can do just about anything you ask him to do. He can score, he can defend, and if it comes down to it, he can be a playmaker. Just what the doctors prescribed for the Celtics.

The Takeaway

It is clear to see that Robert Williams III is the big that the Celtics needed. Through the new year, the Celtics have been playing like the top team in the east they were supposed to be. They have even gone on a 9 game win streak. Elite play from our main core have combined with Ime's coaching game plan to create a brand new team, with a new identity, one that has not been seen for a long time. It seems that the Celtics got 'lucky', with a bright green future ahead. 


Dunk picture from celticswire.usatoday.com


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