Former NC State guard C.J. Williams has spent time in both Europe and the NBA’s developmental league since he left Raleigh, all in the hopes of eventually getting the shot he’s getting this season with the Los Angeles Clippers.
Williams agreed to a two-way deal with the Clippers prior to the season, which means basically that he was allowed to split time between the big club and its G-League affiliate—that is if the big club needed him.
After injuries left LA shorthanded in the back court, Williams got his chance, and he’s played in 27 games for the Clippers this season. Williams has averaged about 20 minutes and six points per game, but he’s been proving his worth as a role player in the league, most recently with this game-winner against the Hawks on Monday:
He logged 37 minutes and scored 15 points in that game.
Here is the rub with two-way contracts, though: they set a limit on how much time (45 days) a player can spend with the NBA club. C.J. will hit day 42 with the Clippers on Wednesday, which means the team has a looming decision to make. They could offer him an NBA contract, send him back to the G-League, or even waive him and hope that he clears waivers so they can hang on to him.
So his near-term NBA future is far from clear at this point, but he has made himself a good chunk of change this season, and he’s made a pretty good case that he belongs at this level. This season might be the big break he’s been working for, and I think a 27-year-old NBA rookie is a pretty good story, regardless of where he went to school.