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Lou Williams Shares The Story Of How Doc Rivers Convinced Him To Stay With The Los Angeles Clippers After Trade In 2017

Lou Williams Shares The Story Of How Doc Rivers Convinced Him To Stay With The Los Angeles Clippers After Trade In 2017

Lou Williams is one of the best bench players in NBA history. The multi-time Sixth Man Of The Year winner is seeing his NBA career wind down, but it was a fantastic few years for him recently. Up until 2019-20, Williams was one of the most impactful players coming off the bench for the LA Clippers.

Williams was on the verge of being a perennial trade asset in 2017. He had been traded to the Houston Rockets from the LA Lakers. However, he was quickly moved on to the LA Clippers in the deal that brought Chris Paul to the Rockets. At that point, Lou became dejected with the trajectory of his career and was upset as a Clipper.

Coach Doc Rivers confronted Williams and addressed his queries in a wonderfully reassuring move by the coach that is known for his ability to galvanize players. Williams revealed the details of that conversation to Draymond Green.

“If you know Doc, he don’t hold no punches. He like, ‘I ain’t feeling [your energy]. You don’t wanna be here?’ I said, ‘I don’t. I got traded twice in six months. No, y’all weren’t on my radar.’ I wasn’t a big Clippers fan. … He like, ‘Look, we reset and we reenergizing. I don’t know what else I need to tell you but this is gonna be your home. I’m gonna allow you to be yourself. And we’re gonna do something special here.’ Doc told me that Day 1. For whatever reason, I believed him. For whatever reason, I bought in. And my Clippers run is by far the best I’ve felt playing basketball in my entire career.”

"For whatever reason I believed him, I bought in. And my Clippers run is by far the best I've felt playing basketball in my entire career."

Rivers allowed Williams to be an explosive off-the-bench player and made him a coveted asset around the league. He would survive the roster purge that brought Paul George to the team in 2019 and was crucial for the roster until last season when he was traded to the Hawks under new coach Ty Lue.

Williams hasn't been getting playing time or generating much interest around the league, so it seems his tenure in the league may be over. But one talk with Rivers helped him unlock the best spell of his career.