Derrick Williams tells Wolves: Choosing me is 'the right choice'

  • Article by: JERRY ZGODA , Star Tribune
  • Updated: May 20, 2011 - 8:00 AM

The Arizona star called himself the draft's best player and a small forward. David Kahn has interest in trading the No. 2 pick for help.


Arizona's Derrick Williams, shown in Arizona's NCAA tournament win over Duke, met with Timberwolves officials.

Photo: Mark J. Terrill, Associated Press

CameraStar Tribune photo galleries

Cameraview larger

CHICAGO - Arizona forward Derrick Williams interviewed with Timberwolves brass -- well, everybody except for coach Kurt Rambis -- on Wednesday night shortly after he arrived at the NBA's draft combine in Chicago.

On Thursday afternoon, he declared the Wolves have the chance to select this year's best player with the draft's second pick next month.

"Yes, sir, I definitely am," Williams said.

A 19-year-old who in two collegiate seasons has surged from being considered a possible first-round pick to one of the draft's top two players, Williams sure doesn't lack confidence.

Williams is expected to be selected second overall next month after Cleveland chooses Duke guard Kyrie Irving first.

The question now: The Wolves will do the selecting with that second pick, but will it be for themselves or another team?

Already it's clear the Wolves will shop that second pick in search of a more experienced player or players and quite possibly a later pick in the first round.

Thursday's rumor said the team is discussing a trade with Indiana involving Pacers forward Danny Granger. The report by an Ohio writer mentioned the names of Michael Beasley and Ricky Rubio as well as that No. 2 pick.

Wolves boss David Kahn in turn texted an inquiring Indianapolis reporter and asked if the team must include Kevin Love, too.

Williams interviewed with the Wolves, the Phoenix Suns and the Boston Celtics on his first night at the combine. The Suns own the draft's 13th pick and the Celtics have the 25th pick, so both teams would have to swing a big deal to select him.

"It doesn't really matter too much to me," Williams said when asked how much he cares whether he is taken first or second. "Whoever does choose me is making the right choice. Whoever doesn't choose me, I'm just going to try to get back at them and know why they didn't choose me."

Williams answered basketball and background questions during his 30-minute chat with Kahn, Assistant General Manager Tony Ronzone and members of the Wolves scouting staff. Like Irving, Williams is in Chicago only to talk with teams and for measuring and medical tests. He is not participating in on-court drills.

A year ago, Rambis was very much involved in interviewing and evaluating players during the predraft process. He also traveled with Kahn to Spain to scout Rubio and other players. This spring, he has remained at home in Los Angeles --where is doing some television work for the NBA playoffs -- while Kahn and company have traveled back to Spain and prepare for the draft.

Rambis' future as the team's head coach remains undecided a month after the season ended. Both Kahn and Rambis' agent on Thursday said his presence isn't an issue and isn't needed in Chicago.

Agent Warren LeGarie said his client was involved last year because it was Rambis' first draft on the job and he noted most teams don't have their head coaches in Chicago.

"We have no timetable," said LeGarie, who plans to meet with Kahn before he leaves Chicago on Sunday but who isn't necessarily expecting an answer on his client's future by then. "We have a contract for two more years. We're waiting for David to decide what he wants to do."

Williams, meanwhile, is waiting to see what smart team selects him and whether that team is the Timberwolves.

On Thursday, Williams declared himself an NBA small forward who can play some power forward, not the other way around as some teams project him. The Wolves currently have Michael Beasley, Wes Johnson and Anthony Randolph who all can play small forward. Williams' play has evoked some comparisons to Beasley, and he is working out five times a week in Los Angeles with Johnson, with whom he shares an agent.

"I'm not a 4 [power forward], I'm a 3 [small forward]," he said. "Whoever picks me will find that out. I'm just a lot more skilled than most people think I am."



  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions


Buffalo 12/28/14 12:00 PM
New England
Cleveland 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Dallas 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Indianapolis 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Jacksonville 12/28/14 12:00 PM
San Diego 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Kansas City
NY Jets 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Chicago 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Philadelphia 12/28/14 12:00 PM
NY Giants
New Orleans 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Tampa Bay
Carolina 12/28/14 3:25 PM
Detroit 12/28/14 3:25 PM
Green Bay
Oakland 12/28/14 3:25 PM
Arizona 12/28/14 3:25 PM
San Francisco
St. Louis 12/28/14 3:25 PM
Cincinnati 12/28/14 7:30 PM
TBA 1/3/15 2:00 AM
TBA 1/3/15 2:00 AM
Toronto 110 FINAL
LA Clippers 98
Boston 88 FINAL
Washington 101
Orlando 102 FINAL
Charlotte 94
Memphis 84 4th Qtr 5:30
Miami 82
Indiana 67 3rd Qtr 4:08
Brooklyn 57
New Orleans 67 3rd Qtr 2:28
Chicago 72
Atlanta 39 3rd Qtr
Milwaukee 37
Philadelphia 16 2nd Qtr 9:51
Utah 27
New York 9:00 PM
Minnesota 9:30 PM
Golden State
NY Islanders 3 2nd OT :00
Buffalo 3
Detroit 2 1st OT 1:58
Ottawa 2
Carolina 1 FINAL
Tampa Bay 2
New Jersey 1 FINAL
NY Rangers 3
Boston 2 FINAL
Columbus 6
Winnipeg 3 3rd Prd 3:37
Minnesota 3
Washington 2 3rd Prd 11:27
Pittsburgh 0
Dallas 4 2nd Prd :48
St. Louis 2
Philadelphia 1 3rd Prd
Nashville 3
Anaheim 1 3rd Prd
Arizona 1
Chicago 2 1st Prd :14
Colorado 2
Edmonton 9:00 PM
San Jose 9:00 PM
Los Angeles
Indiana 87 FINAL
Georgetown 91
Maine 43 FINAL
Seton Hall 72
UNC-Wilmington 82 FINAL
Minnesota 108
Georgia State 61 FINAL
Green Bay 78
Jacksonville St 61 FINAL
Jacksonville 75
Kentucky 58 FINAL
Louisville 50
Northern Ky 55 FINAL
Northwestern 76
North Carolina 89
Pepperdine 53
Santa Clara 60 FINAL
St Marys-CA 73
Oakland 56 FINAL
Maryland 72
Gonzaga 87 FINAL
BYU 80
Mercer 77 FINAL
Georgia 86
San Francisco 77 FINAL
Pacific 71
Wright State 55 FINAL
Ohio State 100
Presbyterian 65 FINAL
Virginia Tech 87
Brescia 42 2nd Half 2:25
Western Ky 81
Tennessee St 35 2nd Half 15:05
Tennessee 34
Kennesaw St 15 1st Half 3:45
Illinois 46
Colorado State 16 1st Half 3:55
New Mexico St 17
Portland 29 2nd Half
San Diego 27
Wayland Baptist 20 1st Half 3:07
Utah State 31
Bristol University 31 1st Half 3:55
Weber State 40
Sacramento St 35 1st Half 1:10
Utah Valley U 32
Southern Utah 9:00 PM
SD Christian 9:00 PM
San Diego St
Illinois 18 FINAL
Louisiana Tech 35
Rutgers 40 FINAL
North Carolina 21
NC State 34 FINAL
UCF 27
Cincinnati 17 FINAL
Virginia Tech 33
(15) Arizona State 36 FINAL
Duke 31
Miami-Florida 21 FINAL
So Carolina 24
Boston College 30 FINAL
Penn State 31
(25) Nebraska 17 2nd Qtr 3:27
(24) USC 24
Texas A&M 12/29/14 1:00 PM
West Virginia
Oklahoma 12/29/14 4:30 PM
(18) Clemson
Arkansas 12/29/14 8:00 PM
Notre Dame 12/30/14 2:00 PM
(22) LSU
(13) Georgia 12/30/14 5:45 PM
(20) Louisville
Maryland 12/30/14 9:00 PM
(9) Ole Miss 12/31/14 11:30 AM
(6) TCU
(21) Boise State 12/31/14 3:00 PM
(12) Arizona
(8) Miss State 12/31/14 7:00 PM
(10) Georgia Tech
(19) Auburn 1/1/15 11:00 AM
(17) Wisconsin
(7) Michigan State 1/1/15 11:30 AM
(4) Baylor
(16) Missouri 1/1/15 12:00 PM
(2) Florida State 1/1/15 4:00 PM
(3) Oregon
(5) Ohio State 1/1/15 7:30 PM
(1) Alabama
Houston 1/2/15 11:00 AM
Iowa 1/2/15 2:20 PM
(11) Kansas State 1/2/15 5:45 PM
(14) UCLA
Washington 1/2/15 9:15 PM
Oklahoma State
East Carolina 1/3/15 11:00 AM
(2) Connecticut 96
Houston 50
Gonzaga 78
Pacific 92 FINAL
San Francisco 54
St Marys-CA 62 FINAL
Santa Clara 61
San Diego 73 2nd Half 7:21
Portland 50
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters





question of the day

Poll: Who is your favorite pro sports coach in the Twin Cities?

Weekly Question