Robert Williams' Celtics career off to worst start imaginable

Robert Williams' Celtics career off to worst start imaginable

Celtics first-round pick Robert Williams must like the idea of spending his winter in Maine. His run of absences seems destined to ensure him a spot on the Red Claws before Summer League even begins.

Williams, a consensus top-10 caliber talent who dropped in the draft due to concerns over his work ethic, wasn’t present for the Celtics’ first Summer League practice Sunday. The big man was in town for his introductory press conference Friday, but missed his flight back to Boston. 

“We expected him to be here, but obviously he missed his flight,” Celtics assistant coach Jay Larranaga told reporters, per ESPN. “I think everyone’s disappointed. You want to get everything off to a good start in the first day, but we’ll handle that internally and move forward.”

This is Williams’ second missed professional commitment since his NBA career began 10 days ago. He was late for his post-draft conference call, because he slept in. Williams turned down an invitation to be at the NBA Draft in Brooklyn and spent the night with his friends and family. 

To state the obvious, this is an atrocious look for a player who literally fell in the draft because teams were concerned about his motivation. Last week, Brad Stevens said he wants Williams to emulate Al Horford’s approach to the game. 

“Robert’s number one thing, like any other young player coming into the NBA, is you have to learn to enjoy the process,” Stevens said to Jay King of the Athletic. “And you have to learn to really appreciate the daily work that you have to put in. And so, to be there early, to sleep well, to eat well, to get your training table work, to lift, to shoot, to put in extra time before you practice. Like, all those things are incredibly important.”

So far, Williams is failing every single one of Stevens’ benchmarks. Missing practice is the opposite of being there early, oversleeping is the opposite of sleeping well. You can’t put in extra time if you aren’t there, and considering Williams can’t even manage to get his butt to a plane on time, it’s hard to imagine he’s emulating the TB12 training regimen. 

Not to sound like an unctuous self-help guru, but one of the few things you can control is your effort level. It’s the bare minimum requirement of any professional. The future doesn’t bode well for Williams if he can’t even be punctual during the first 10 days of his career. 

Dick Vitale called Williams’ absenteeism “disrespectful to the Celtics.” But most of all, he’s being disrespectful towards himself. 



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Source: GreenStreet Blog

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