Chris Paul

Chris Paul checking out Grant Williams in preseason action for the Celtics

Chris Paul checking out Grant Williams in preseason action for the Celtics

You'd be hard-pressed to find someone who knows who Grant Williams is and is not a fan of him or his game. The rookie forward out of Tennessee has already made a ton of fans in Boston, and as he gets his first taste of NBA action in the preseason, it looks like he has a fan in Chris Paul.

Before his senior season in high school, Williams participated in a summer circuit on the North Carolina-based Team CP3 along with Sacramento Kings forward Harry Giles and Minnesota Timberwolves wing Josh Okoige. Paul also congratulated Williams when he won SEC Player of the Year in 2018 as well as when the 20-year-old was drafted 22nd overall by the Celtics. 

Both Williams and Paul are North Carolina natives as well, so Williams seems to have himself a mentor in the future Hall-of-Fame point guard. 

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Must-see NBA games on the 2019-20 regular season schedule

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USA TODAY Sports photos and AP Images

Must-see NBA games on the 2019-20 regular season schedule

With the schedules released, we now know where all those new faces in new places around the NBA will be welcomed by their new fans, and perhaps more importantly, we know where they'll likely not exactly be embraced when they return to face their old fans.

From the Battle of L.A. taking on a whole new meaning with the addition of Kawhi Leonard and Paul George to the Clippers and Anthony Davis joining LeBron James with the Lakers, to Russell Westbrook returning to Oklahoma City as a Houston Rocket, the intriguing matchups abound.

 

NBA rumors: Thunder trade Russell Westbrook to Rockets for Chris Paul in blockbuster deal

NBA rumors: Thunder trade Russell Westbrook to Rockets for Chris Paul in blockbuster deal

Just when you thought it was one of the slowest sports nights of the year, the NBA had other plans.

The Oklahoma City Thunder have agreed to trade superstar point guard Russell Westbrook to the Houston Rockets for veteran guard Chris Paul, first-round picks in 2024 and 2026, and pick swaps in 2021 and 2025, per ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski.

This means Westbrook, in a stunning turn of events, will be reunited with former Thunder teammate James Harden in Houston.

The move comes on the heels of the Thunder trading Paul George to the Clippers. Oklahoma City acquired guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, forward Danilo Gallinari, first-round draft picks in 2022, 2024 and 2026, and two first-round picks via Miami (2021 and 2023) in that deal.

From a Celtics perspective, they can thank their lucky stars they're in the East (and that 1-16 playoff seeding is still a pipe dream). The West is an absolute war zone and teams in the East can only hope all these stars duos beat each other into oblivion before the Finals. Westbrook staying out west instead of going to Miami is a win, too, for East squads like Boston.

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