Tennessee star power forward Grant Williams announced his intentions to stay in the NBA Draft this morning, a day earlier than he previously had planned to. He sat down with Shams Charania of Stadium to announce his decision.
Tennessee star and projected first rounder Grant Williams sat down for an exclusive interview with Stadium and our NBA Insider @ShamsCharania to discuss his plans for the upcoming #NBADraft. pic.twitter.com/fiob7d6fKw— Stadium (@Stadium) May 17, 2019
“I’m going to stay in the NBA Draft after receiving this feedback,” Williams said in the interview. “With how I’ve performed and what I’m hearing, I feel confident in myself and my game, as well as what I’m hearing from teams. I’m excited to take this next step in my journey.”
Williams is a two-time SEC player of the year. He averaged over 18 points per game last season, pulling in 7.5 rebounds per contest. The former three-star recruit grew into a truly dominant player over the last three seasons.
“To Vol fans, honestly, I just want to thank you,” Williams said. “There’s not much more that I can say, because you guys have been there for me, you’ve been amazing to me. It’s been a great three years. It’s been a great process. I want to thank my teammates, my coaches, as well as you all (the fans).”
Grant will finish 12th all time in scoring at Tennessee with 1,629 points. He’s a projected first round pick in this draft, usually landing somewhere between picks 20-30 in mock drafts around the web.
Williams’ departure leaves Tennessee with a massive need down low, following the graduation of Kyle Alexander. The Vols are left with John Fulkerson, D.J. Burns, Zach Kent and 2019 commits Olivier Robinson-Nkamhoua and Drew Pember.
Tennessee is still waiting on a decision from point guard Jordan Bone, who said yesterday that he would take the full amount of time to figure out whether or not he wanted to keep his name in the draft.
This officially frees up another spot for Rick Barnes to fill. The staff has an obvious need for a veteran down low and could also need some point guard depth if Bone opts to keep his name in the draft.