Celtics

Celtics Spotlight: Grant Williams brings energy, poise beyond his rookie status

Celtics Spotlight: Grant Williams brings energy, poise beyond his rookie status

Usually, when rookies get tasked with addressing a crowd, it’s the veterans putting a young player in an awkward situation. But Grant Williams isn’t your typical rookie.

Taking the stage at the Celtics’ Shamrock Foundation Gala on Thursday night, Williams and teammate Enes Kanter were tasked with saying hello and setting the agenda for the evening. In the blink of an eye, Williams convinced the crowd to sing an impromptu version of "Happy Birthday" to Vincent Poirier, then led an auction chant that quick raised $75,000 for charity.

Spotlights: Walker | Smart | Brown | Hayward | Kanter |

Tatum | Fall | Wanamaker | Ojeleye | Edwards 

Yes, Williams brings an undeniable poise and energy to everything that he does, including when he’s on the basketball court. That’s why the 22nd pick from June’s draft is likely to have an immediate opportunity to earn playing time in Boston. It also helps his cause that good things tend to happen when he’s on the court (and, evidently, the mic, too). 

It’s a successful season for Williams if… 

…he remains a plus/minus monster like we saw at summer league and again in the preseason. Williams does a little bit of everything and, while it’s unfair to expect him to replace Al Horford’s contributions, he can bring a bit of what the team lost in screening, passing, and simply making the right play. Williams shot the ball well beyond the 3-point arc (41.7 percent) in the preseason, an encouraging sign for a player that shot 29.1 percent from distance for his college career. If he ultimately proves he can joust with NBA bigs despite giving up size, the 6-foot-6 (without shoes) Williams can carve out a role in this new-look frontcourt.

It’s a disappointing season for Williams if… 

…his size becomes an issue against NBA bigs. The preseason was an encouraging glimpse but how does Williams hold up against a team like Philadelphia with its Horford/Joel Embiid front line? Williams has brought a lightheartedness to the team since his arrival and it’d be a disappointment if he lost any of that youthful exuberance for any reason.

2019-2020 Outlook

Williams impacts the game in so many ways that it’s easy to see him carving out a role, and one that might grow as the season goes on. Williams has got a bit of PJ Tucker in him and he’s probably as close to a Horford-type big as the team has. Celtics coach Brad Stevens has already said Williams will have a long NBA career and his basketball IQ alone will distinguish him among his rookie peers.

Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Celtics easily on your device.

How Tremont Waters, Vincent Poirier fared for Maine Red Claws vs. Wisconsin Herd

How Tremont Waters, Vincent Poirier fared for Maine Red Claws vs. Wisconsin Herd

Tacko Fall (knee) remains out for the Maine Red Claws, and Romeo Langford suffered another ankle injury, so that put Tremont Waters and Vincent Poirier in the spotlight on Thursday.

Waters has been sensational to begin his tenure in Maine. So good, in fact, that he earned NBA G League Player of the Month honors for November. 

For Poirier, Thursday night marked his first game playing alongside Waters with the Red Claws.

Here's how the two Celtics rookies performed in the 123-118 loss:

TREMONT WATERS

Waters filled the stat sheet again with a double-double as he notched 13 points (5-for-15 shooting) and 10 assists. The Celtics' No. 51 overall pick in this year's NBA Draft knocked down 3 of his 9 3-point attempts.

VINCENT POIRIER

Poirier made an instant impact in his first game in a Red Claws uniform. The Frenchman contributed 14 points while going 6-for-9 from the field and bringing down nine boards.

Next, the Red Claws will take on the Delaware Blue Coats on Saturday at 7 p.m. ET. You can tune in to that matchup right here on NBC Sports Boston.

Don’t miss NBC Sports Boston's coverage of Celtics-Kings, which tips off today at 3 p.m. ET with Celtics Pregame Live, and then Mike & Scal have the call of the game at 3:30 p.m. You can also stream the game through the MyTeams App.

Why Grant Williams gave out candles to Celtics staff and teammates

Why Grant Williams gave out candles to Celtics staff and teammates

Last month, Grant Williams' generosity was on display when he provided the Boston Celtics staff with a special gift.

The C's rookie gave out candles to media members, teammates, and employees throughout the organization to show his appreciation for their work. He also took to Twitter to express his gratitude.

Williams talked to NBC Sports Boston's Kyle Draper on Celtics Post Up about why he chose candles as the gift for his kind gesture.

"Candles, for me, they always put me in a great mood," Williams said. "They're relaxing. They can change your emotion after a long day. I think it's a small token of just showing appreciation and allows especially during the holidays to be able to go home and just have something where you say 'I feel appreciated.'"

A simple yet thoughtful explanation from the 21-year-old.

Williams has been impressive on the court as well as off of it this season. Of course, his 3-point shooting remains an area he'd like to improve. Especially if it means changing some of the nicknames he's been given by his Celtics teammates.

Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Celtics easily on your device.