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Rob Williams most-physically gifted Celtics big man since Bill Russell

 For my readers that may think I am getting carried away, I am simply comparing the physical gifts of Robert Williams III to those of the legendary Bill Russell. I make no attempt to compare the potential of the former to the astounding career of the latter.


I watched Russ many times at the old Boston Garden and on black-and-white TV. The poor quality of earlier television sets may have blurred my estimates of Big Bill's talents, but  nothing distorted my close-up views at The Garden.

 Russell was closer to 6'10" than his often-listed 6'9", and his wingspan extended to 7'4". Upon his entry into the League in 1956, no one had yet seen anyone like him. Bill was quick, superbly athletic - and had nice handles for a big man. Until Wilt Chamberlain showed up, there was no match for Russ in the middle. He could out-rebound, outrun and out-quick any opposing center, and his shot-blocking prevented untold numbers of shots from ever being taken.

Now to Rob Williams. He might give up two inches of height (he is 6'8" tall) to Big Bill, but he gains it back with his 2-inch advantage with his 7'6" wingspan. Russell is really responsible for bringing the vertical game to a League that was mostly earth-bound until his arrival. But Bill could run the floor, reject opponents' shots into the hands of his teammates and cover opponents on the perimeter very effectively.

Williams III will almost-certainly not achieve what Russell accomplished, but Rob has some amazing physical gifts that coupled with experience, seasoning and savvy, could raise him to All-Star status in the coming seasons. Count me as exhilarated by thoughts of the upcoming Celtics season. 

It all comes down to Rob remaining injury-free. He played in a career-high 52 games last season, and projecting his stats to the 42-MPG career status of Russell, Williams comes away averaging 17.8 PPG, 15.3 RPG, 4.0 APG, 1.9 SPG and 3.9 BPG

What did Russ average for his career (steals and blocks were not recorded)? 

15.1 PPG - 22.5 RPG - 4.3 APG

There you have it! Brad Stevens and the Celtics organization seem to agree with what I have written here. They are signing him on a 4-year/$54 million contract

Note: If my readers want more on the subject, take in my previous article, If they played today - Bill Russell.



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