Having announced last week on Instagram that he contemplated retirement after being traded to the Hawks, Lou Williams expanded on that subject during his Tuesday media availability, explaining that it “hurts” to have been traded by the Clippers.
“I had a lot of investment there. We had some success,” Williams said, per Paul Newberry of The Associated Press. “We were gearing up for another deep run, a championship run. That was my mentality. I thought I would finish the season there.
“… (But) I don’t want to look back and say I retired prematurely, be asking myself what could have been or what I could’ve done. This is an opportunity to finish out the season with this team (Atlanta) and go from there.”
Williams was cleared to play on Tuesday night, but didn’t take the court. Having just met most of his teammates, he wanted to take a game to get his bearings before entering the fray, Newberry writes.
“I want to get an understanding of how they play,” Williams said. “See their sets, get a feel for their rotations, understand how this group of guys mesh, see where I might fit. It would be unfair to this group of guys to just throw me out there.”
Here’s more from around the Southeast:
- The Hawks provided a minor update on Cam Reddish (Achilles) on Tuesday night, announcing in a press release that he has increased his lower limb weight room work and will add limited low level impact work. Reddish isn’t close to returning and will be re-evaluated in two weeks.
- After falling out of the Hornets‘ starting lineup and seeing his minutes dip, Cody Zeller resolved to try to earn back those minutes rather than sulking, writes Rick Bonnell of The Charlotte Observer. “My high school coach used to say, ‘If you want to play more, play better,'” said Zeller, who had 16 points and 13 rebounds in just 24 minutes on Tuesday. The big man has assured head coach James Borrego that he’ll remain engaged regardless of how much playing time he gets, Bonnell adds.
- With the Magic in position to get a high lottery pick in this year’s draft, Sam Vecenie of The Athletic identifies Cade Cunningham, Jalen Suggs, and Jalen Green as the top prospects the team should target if given the opportunity. Evan Mobley has positional overlap with Wendell Carter and Mohamed Bamba, but he and Jonathan Kuminga would both be good fallback options too if Orlando gets a top-five pick and those first three prospects aren’t available, Vecenie says.