Grant Williams Reveals 3 Regrets From Time With Celtics: Exclusive

Grant Williams, Jayson Tatum, Boston Celtics

Getty Grant Williams, Jayson Tatum, Boston Celtics

Former Boston Celtics forward Grant Williams elaborated to Heavy Sports about the three moments during his time with the Celtics that “p***** him off.”

“I would say the Donovan Mitchell moment in terms of, like, missing the free throws in Cleveland,” Williams said, referring to the March 6, 2023, game against the Cleveland Cavaliers in which Williams missed two free throws with the game tied at 109 and 0:00.8 left in regulation. Mitchell, the Cavs star, appeared to try to “psyche out” Williams before the foul shots, according to SB Nation.

Williams also alluded to the Celtics’ history of meeting the Miami Heat in the Eastern Conference finals in three of the past four seasons.

“I would say, really, the Miami Heat over the past [few years]. That’s like the same moment, in a way,” Williams said to Heavy Sports on July 21, during media availability at his Grant Williams Family Foundation event at West Charlotte (North Carolina) High School. “Those two were definitely frustrating for me.” Though Boston topped Miami in 2022 to make it to the NBA Finals, the Celtics lost to the Heat in 2020 and 2023.

“And then, I think, my second year — really, just how I approached [the game], and [how] I played in that year,” he said, referring to the 2020-21 season, when he averaged 4.7 points per game. “Like, I could have definitely improved a little bit more than I had.”

In his conversation with Heavy Sports, Williams was responding to a quest about a comment he’d made on the July 21 episode of JJ Redick’s “The Old Man & the Three” podcast about his regrets during his four years in Boston. Williams is now on the Dallas Mavericks after a July 12 sign-and-trade.

He also put his frustrations into perspective.

“I feel like you’ve grown because of things like that. You don’t always have success,” Williams said. “You got to have some failures along the way.”

Grant Williams’ parents, Gilbert Williams and Teresa Johnson, along with Quest Nutrition spokesperson Grace Niu join Grant Williams on July 21 to accept Quest Nutrition’s $10,000 donation during the Inaugural Youth Basketball Camp at West Charlotte High School in Charlotte, North Carolina on July 21, 2023. (Photo: Courtesy of Quest Nutrition/Derek McCoy)

Quest NutritionGrant Williams, posing here with his parents, Gilbert Williams and Teresa Johnson, and Quest Nutrition spokesperson Grace Niu, accepts Quest’s $10,000 to the Grant Williams Family Foundation’s inaugural Youth Basketball Camp at West Charlotte (North Carolina) on July 21. (Photo Courtesy of Quest Nutrition/Derek McCoy)

Grant Williams Claims He Was the Strongest Celtic

During his interview with Heavy Sports, Williams was asked to finally settle the score over which member of the Celtics roster is the strongest. In recent seasons, we’ve seen Jayson Tatum and Williams debate who is stronger between the pair. According to Williams, he was “clearly” the strongest member of the roster, followed by Robert Williams.

“[Me] Without a doubt, like, there’s no comparison. JT is strong. He has leg strength. He’s a good deadlifter,” Williams said. “But in terms of everything else, ask him – he can’t bench, his chest is bird chest, it’s small. And in terms of everything else, I can outlift him any day of the week.

But the legs I’ll give him, like deadlifting, he might beat me in squatting. I don’t think he’ll beat me. It’s just certain things I think he’ll win at. I don’t know why he’s good at deadlifting. Maybe it’s because it’s the only thing he really is practicing all the time. But that’s what I’ll say. I’m definitely stronger. Without a doubt. … Rob is stronger than JT, too. So JT, now is not even the strongest one in the locker room.”

With Williams departing to Dallas, it looks like Tatum will move up in the strength ranks to be the second-strongest member of the Celtics rotation behind Robert Williams. 

Grant Williams Details Changes Under Joe Mazzulla

During Williams’ recent appearance on ‘Old Man and The Three,’ he discussed how the Celtics’ philosophy changed under Joe Mazzulla after he had taken over the head coaching follow following Ime Udoka‘s suspension and ultimate release.

“So I think for Ime, he understood the importance of the defensive end and understanding that if a team scores 80 points, 90 points, no matter how many points we score, we give ourselves a really, really good chance of winning. While I think that Joe has a little bit more offensive, like, ‘If we make 20 threes in the game, we’re gonna win each game because we’ll have enough points because we’re going to have twos and fouls of things to add up.’”

The Celtics appear to have doubled down on Mazzulla’s preference for offense during the current offseason, adding Kristaps Porzingis to the roster to create a new big three and give the roster an additional scoring punch across all three levels.

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