Troy Williams scores 21 points in Rockets debut

  • 04/03/2017 8:26 am in

It’s been a whirlwind rookie season for Troy Williams.

The former Indiana forward left Bloomington after his junior season and wasn’t selected in last June’s NBA draft. Williams played in the NBA Summer League with Phoenix before signing a free agent contract with Memphis.

Williams broke training camp with the Grizzlies and played in 24 games, making 13 starts. He also spent time in the D-League with the Iowa Energy before being waived in late January.

After clearing waivers, Williams went back to the Energy, where he stayed until signing with Houston in mid-March. Williams played in 10 games with Houston’s D-League affiliate, the Rio Grande Valley Vipers, before being called up by the Rockets on Sunday.

With James Harden sidelined with an illness and Trevor Ariza out for personal reasons, Mike D’Antoni inserted Williams into the starting lineup in his Houston debut.

And Williams delivered.

The Indiana product scored 21 points on 7-of-12 shooting in 39 minutes as Houston beat Phoenix, 123-116. Williams hit six 3-pointers and also added five rebounds, three assists, a steal and just one turnover.

In 25 NBA games this season, Williams is averaging 5.9 points, two rebounds and a steal in 18.3 minutes per game.

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  • bball at nick’s

    It’s funny how the defense gave Troy no respect at first, and then begrudgingly started defending him.

  • pcantidote

    Tonight, 2 points and 8 turnovers ;). Just kidding, give ’em hell Troy!

  • SCHoosier

    Man his jump shot form is really improved. Still h as that quickness. somebody can use this kid as a role player.

  • VanPastorMan

    Way to go Troy!!!

  • IULore

    Yeah he was definitely working on it his junior year. All that time playing and practicing as a pro is really paying off, good for him.

  • John D Murphy

    Got two on the rockets now. Good for Troy.

  • Outoftheloop

    Troy can play in the League!

  • inLinE6

    Were he shoot like this, we would’ve got that banner. I know he’ll make the NBA but didn’t expect him to shoot with this confidence.

  • Indiana_Banners

    If only that were true… Troy actually shot like this the last time we saw him… he was 5/8 from 3 against UNC but it wasn’t enough. Oh well, I’ll hopefully enjoy rooting for Troy over the next decade of his NBA career.

  • Chi-Town Hoosier

    Was really surprised that the Grizzlies released him as I thought he was playing well. Going to have to add the Rockets to my bandwagon teams along with Dallas!

  • Sherronhasaheadache

    Good job TW! tear it up!

  • Arch Puddington

    It’s a dead horse at this point, but still worth observing that the four teams that made the Final Four were ranked #1, 2, 16, and 17 in the nation in defense. In the 15 years since we made it to the finals with a team ranked #5 in defense, we have only had three teams ranked in the top 40 (2013, #21, 2007, #24, 2005, #37). We have had multiple top 10 offenses during those years, but we ranked outside the top 100 on defense many more times than we have ranked inside the top 50.

    Last year’s loss to North Carolina played out pretty much according to form. We shot and scored reasonably well in that game, but allowed UNC to shoot more than 50% from from both the field (32-62) and 3 point line (11-20), and to score 1.42 points per possession. There is almost no way to win a game in which your defense is that bad.

  • Arch Puddington

    Getting to play for an offensive genius like Mike D’Antoni could be just the break Troy needs to make it in the league. He’s probably not good enough to work in just any system — I doubt, for example, that he would be a good fit in San Antonio, where defense, ball control, and high level passing are the hallmarks — but D’Antoni runs a wide open offense that should suit Troy’s skill set quite well. I’ve had my doubts right from the start, but I am rooting for him mightily and I am excited that things have taken this turn for him.

  • Zach

    Troy’s a great fit in the Dantoni offensive system. I expect him to continue to thrive. Congrats Troy!

  • Indiana_Banners

    You’re right, it’s a dead horse at this point. I recall the game, I was just noting that for Troy, much like nearly every team from the Crean era, the offense wasn’t the issue. I don’t think his defense in particular was the issue against North Carolina, I think that particular game’s bad defense evolved out of an inability to defend the posts, but like you said it’s well past being worth our time to examine by now.

  • Creek0512

    UNC shot 31% from 3 last seasons, and then made their first 7 against IU in the Sweet 16. I don’t think you can blame that on IU’s defense. UNC then went 4 of 13 the rest of the game, which comes out to 31%.

  • Arch Puddington

    ” I don’t think you can blame that on IU’s defense”

    I think you can, and not just for the obvious reason that you point out yourself: a bad shooting team shot the lights out against us. You can’t make the argument by excluding the stretch in which they were hitting and look only at the stretch in which they weren’t. They really hit those shots, and they really counted.

    Ken Pomeroy has written about this, and and here is what he has to say:

    “…the key to defending the 3 point shot is not allowing many attempts.
    (On average), there will be a roughly a 1-2 percent difference between the teams currently in the top and bottom 20 of opponents’ 3-point percentage. We’re talking about a difference of one make every two or three games between the best and worst groups. Without more analysis, one can’t say precisely how much skill a team has at influencing its opponents’ three-point percentage, but there’s a fair amount of evidence it’s not much…

    With few exceptions, the best measure of three-point defense is a team’s ability to keep the opponents from taking 3’s.”

    So giving up 20 3 point shots to a bad shooting team is lousy defense.

  • HoustonHoosier82

    Only one turnover, though he stayed on the three point line the whole time.
    No crazy drives to the basket

  • Dunkin’ Depot

    One turnover! One turnover! Who is this guy? Haha – nice game TW

  • MPmike B

    I agree. I thought Troy was having a good rookie season which made it even better that he was un drafted. He was starting and holding his own. He had a very good game against the Warriors. On one of the highlights of the game, Troy stole the ball from Steph Curry for a fast break slam. What else could he do to stay on that roster? Just like the lowly Net did to Yogi, the Grizzles are in the same stupid short bus. These two clown franchises have regret it.

  • TomJameson

    Well, it is a well beaten horse, but you’re absolutely right, and most everybody has known it for a few years now. Some like to blame the offense, but the lack of a consistent defense has been the downfall for IU. That consistent no-defense mindset is what would convince me to make a change, if I had that particular job anyway.

    Hopefully that will change soon.

  • TomJameson

    Well, he did make that one drive on the highlight reel. He was fouled and went to the free throw line.