Do the Washington Wizards need all that upside?
There’s no denying the upside in drafting Patrick Williams. He’s an elite athlete with a rare blend of size and springiness. His potential is off the charts. But will he ever put it all together?
Williams has shown flashes as a ball-handler and may have the potential to be a secondary playmaker, but he’s not there yet. Maybe his 83 percent free-throw shooting is a sign that he can improve upon his 32 percent three-point shooting, but there’s no guarantee. Especially when he struggles to create his own shot. And on the defensive end, while he can erase shots with ease, he doesn’t have the lateral quickness to stick with guards along the perimeter, therefore limiting his switching ability.
There’s a lot to like about Williams. But there’s a lot to be rightfully worried about, too. Yes, Florida State was deep last year, but is it a concern that he couldn’t crack the starting lineup? What does that say about his ability to stand out on an NBA roster? And if he wasn’t assertive and aggressive at the NCAA level, will he be able to flip that switch against bigger, stronger, and more skilled NBA opponents?
No draft pick is a sure thing. But with Williams, it’s a real gamble. If you’re drafting Williams, you’re drafting athleticism and hoping the refined basketball skill comes…eventually. You’re drafting upside, and while the upside is fun, it’s not what the Wizards need right now. At least not that much upside. Not at #9.
Williams is an intriguing prospect, but let another team take on that project.