Robert Williams
Robert Williams
23-Year-Old CenterC
Boston Celtics
2020 Fantasy Outlook
During the 2019-20 season, The Timelord did not experience the breakout season some expected. A hip injury restricted Williams to only 29 games last season. And now the 23-year-old seems once again stuck at third in the Boston center pecking order, behind last year's starter Daniel Theis and newly signed Tristan Thompson. Thompson, in particular, seems like an upgrade over last year's back-up, Enes Kanter. Should Thompson shine now that he's back with a contender, he could eat into Williams' minutes. Boston would probably be very happy to see Williams simply stay healthy for a full season - he only appeared in 32 games as a rookie in 2018-19. Timelord's athletic defensive approach is unquestioned and valued by head coach Brad Stevens. But Williams will probably need injuries to occur to Theis or Thompson for the Texas product to see significant minutes. Read Past Outlooks
$Signed a two-year, $3.59 million contract with the Celtics in July of 2018. Celtics exercised $2.03 million team option for 2020-21 in October of 2019. Celtics exercised $3.66 million team option for 2021-22 in December of 2020.
Personal Bio

Robert Lee Williams III was born in Shreveport, Louisiana, in 1997. He's the son of Robert and Tundra Williams and has one sister, Brittanni. He emerged as a top recruit while playing for coach Ron Meikle at North Caddo High School in Vivian, Louisiana. He came out of high school as the No. 1 ranked recruit in the state. In college at Texas A&M, Williams majored in recreation, park and tourism science. During Williams' rookie seaon, Celtics fans nicknamed Williams the "Time Lord," though GM Danny Ainge preferred "Lob." Follow the big shot blocker via @williams.lll on Instagram and @rob_williamsIII on twitter.

College/International Summary

Robert Williams played two seasons at Texas A&M before joining the Celtics. For both seasons, Williams was paired with fellow big man Tyler Davis, appearing together in unique two-center lineups for the Aggies. During Williams' freshman season (2016-17), the Aggie started 17 of 31 games, averaging 11.9 points, 8.2 boards and an impressive 2.5 blocks per contest. Williams earned SEC Defensive Player of the Year and Second Team All-SEC accolades. As a sophomore, Williams would start 23 of 30 games, increasing his rebounding (9.2 per game) and his blocks (2.6 per contest). The big man's solid contributions helped Texas A&M reach the Sweet 16 in the 2018 NCAA Tournament. Williams ended his sophomore year by garnering Co-SEC Defensive Player of the Year honors as well as USBWA All-District VII accolades.

Delivers double-double off bench
CBoston Celtics
February 27, 2021
Williams recorded 14 points (6-8 FG, 2-3 FT), 11 rebounds, four assists, three blocks and one steal Friday in a 118-112 win versus Indiana.
ANALYSIS
Williams has benefited from playing time as Boston's backup center (behind Tristan Thompson). Despite playing 22 minutes Friday, Williams was the only Celtics player to log a double-double. Williams' 14 points represented a season high, while his 11 rebounds marked the fourth time he has reached double figures in that category this season.
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Past Season Summaries
2019

Williams' second NBA season saw him grow into a bigger role with the Celtics, as he gained more court time and increased his production. Though a midseason hip injury cost him playing time, he ultimately appeared in 29 games (one start) and more than doubled his scoring average from 2.5 to 5.2, adding 4.4 rebounds and 1.2 blocks per game. Williams' minutes per game increased from 8.8 his rookie season to 13.4 in 2019-20. His per-36-minute stats were eye-popping -- 13.9 points, 11.9 rebounds, 3.2 blocks and 2.0 steals -- and he posted a 72.7 field-goal percentage, a two-tick jump from his already remarkable rookie figure of 70.6. On Nov. 9 against the Spurs, Williams picked up 11 points -- a career best at the time -- along with a career-high six blocks. In his return from injury, Mar. 3 against Brooklyn, Williams picked up 10 points in less than 10 minutes of court time. He saved his best work for seeding play in the Orlando bubble, though, as Williams shot 7-of-7 from the field for a career-high 18 points along with five boards, three blocks and a steal in another game against the Nets on Aug. 5. The 22-year-old center went on to appear in 13 of Boston's 17 postseason games. In Games 1 and 2 of the second round against Toronto, he scored 10 and 11 points, respectively, helping the Celtics build an early series lead. In Game 3 of the series, Williams grabbed a career-playoff-high seven boards in just under 14 minutes of run.

2018

Williams was a first-round pick by Boston in 2018, getting selected 27th overall out of Texas A&M. Some knee tendinitis caused the Celtics to ease Williams into their rotation, and back soreness as well as some time in the G League ultimately limited him to 32 NBA games in his rookie year. Though his opportunities were limited, Williams showed the ability to take advantage and impact the game as a rebounder and shot blocker. On Dec. 10, he collected 11 rebounds and three blocks against the Pelicans. The month of December also saw Williams record a pair of five-block efforts. He collected a season-high eight points in one of those games, shooting 4-for-4 and adding eight boards in a Dec. 19 effort against Phoenix. Such effective shot selection was typical for him, as Williams delivered an incredible 70.6 field-goal percentage on the season, though his limited opportunities held him to 2.5 points and 2.5 rebounds per game -- along with an impressive 1.3 blocks. Though he was lightly used during the Celtics' nine-game playoff run, Williams contributed when given the opportunity. He played nearly nine minutes in Game 2 of Boston's second-round series against the Bucks, delivering four points and five rebounds.

2020
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Transaction History
  • June 21, 2018
    Selected by the Boston Celtics in the first round (27th overall pick) of the 2018 NBA Draft.
  • July 5, 2018
    Signed a two-year, $3.59 million contract with the Boston Celtics.
  • October 14, 2019
    Boston Celtics exercised $2.03 million team option for 2020-21.
  • December 29, 2020
    Boston Celtics exercised $3.66 million team option for 2021-22.
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Past Fantasy Outlooks
2019
2018
Williams' rookie season was a bit of a roller coaster. Championship aspirations at the start of Boston's season heavily implied that Williams would not see much floor time. Then, when the C's were ready to experiment with Williams, back issues hampered his availability. The result was only 32 NBA games and five G League appearances with the Maine Red Claws. At both levels, the body of work was erratic. At one moment, he's effectively defending Anthony Davis or throwing down monster alley-oop jams. But shortly afterward, Williams would be woefully out of position or aimlessly chasing wild blocks instead of playing solid defense. The departure of Al Horford and Aron Baynes has certainly created an opportunity for the 21-year-old Texas product to earn more minutes at the NBA level. Newly signed Enes Kanter will surely start and play major minutes. But after Kanter, the depth chart is messy, with Williams, third-year veteran Daniel Theis and newly signed Frenchman Vincent Poirier all fighting for minutes. None of those other center options come close to Williams' potential for delivering fantastic rim protection. but all three offer better offensive skills. Expect coach Brad Stevens to change his "first center off the bench" player based on matchups. By virtue of experience, Theis will start the year as the second-string center. But expect lots of experimentation throughout the season. The Timelord will have plenty of opportunities to prove he deserves more than last season's nine minutes per game.
Maturity issues and injury concerns are the perfect cocktail for slipping in the draft, and it’s clear both issues were a factor in Williams dropping all the way to Boston with the 27th pick. The good news is the Celtics don't need Williams to perform right out of the gate. Even if the the Texas A&M product were ready to contribute at the NBA level, he'd be hard-pressed to find minutes on most nights given the Celtics' borderline-laughable level of overall depth. All signs point to Williams essentially redshirting as a rookie and spending the bulk of his time with the Maine Red Claws of the G League. Given his intriguing combination of size and athleticism, Williams is somewhat of an interesting long-term prospect, but he's a long way from being ready to play meaningful NBA minutes.
More Fantasy News
Collects 13 rebounds
CBoston Celtics
February 21, 2021
Williams totaled eight points (4-6 FG), 13 rebounds, four blocks and three assists across 21 minutes in an overtime loss to the Pelicans on Sunday.
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Scores 12 points in 16 minutes
CBoston Celtics
February 19, 2021
Williams added 12 points (6-8 FG), seven rebounds, four blocks and two steals in 16 minutes off the bench Friday in the win over the Hawks.
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Grabs career-high five steals
CBoston Celtics
February 16, 2021
Williams posted eight points (4-4 FG), eight rebounds, five steals and two assists in 20 minutes during Tuesday's 112-99 win over the Nuggets.
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Available Sunday
CBoston Celtics
February 14, 2021
Williams (hip) is available to play in Sunday's game against the Wizards.
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Probable Sunday
CBoston Celtics
Hip
February 13, 2021
Williams (hip) is probable for Sunday's game against the Wizards.
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