In the 2021 NBA Draft, the Oklahoma City Thunder own two picks just outside the lottery at No. 16 and No. 18 overall. One of the prospects who could fall in that range is Ziaire Williams who most recently played at Stanford.
Standing at 6-foot-9, Williams is the prototypical NBA wing. Weighing just 188 pounds right now, he could build upon his frame and ultimately become the small forward every great NBA team needs.
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Although he’s got a lot of work to do in terms of his physical frame, Williams has a quick first step and is explosive around the rim. He’ll be a mismatch for bigger forwards with his ability to get to the rim and tough for smaller guards to defend due to his height.
While his 3-point shooting wasn’t great at Stanford, but his free throws shooting was great and suggests he’ll be just fine from beyond the arc at the next level. Williams has also shown the ability to rebound at a high rate, meaning he could have a complete game when he hits his ceiling.
Efficiency will be one challenge for Williams in the NBA. He can certainly score when given the opportunity, but can he be an effective scorer without taking 20 shots?
The NBA game is extremely fast and Williams has been prone to turnovers in high school and college. Between adjusting to the speed of the game and the size of the competition, he’ll need to gain weight and adapt to the professional play style to become the player he has the chance to be.