At 35 years of age, there is no doubt that Lou Williams is the current brother figure in the young and talented Atlanta Hawks team.
And seeing the leader of the squad, Trae Young, continue to develop makes him amazed and delighted — a fruitful result of his impactful presence.
In a sit-down interview of Taylor Rooks featured by Bleacher Report, the veteran was asked how special his star teammate is.
“Trae is dope, man,” Williams said. “I really enjoy working with Trey. Like the kid is a superstar and he’s like, he don’t even know it. You know, he may know it, but he don’t — he don’t carry himself [like that].”
“I just enjoy working with him and how he carries himself.”
Last season, the three-time Sixth Man of the Year, along with two future second round draft picks and cash considerations, were dealt to the Atlanta Hawks, as the Los Angeles Clippers received Rajon Rondo in exchange. For his second stint in his hometown team, Sweet Lou established himself as a vocal mentor amongst the talented roster of the Hawks, and going up as the primary back-up for Young.
The Hawks became a pleasant surprise after all the drama that was headlined by Lloyd Pierce’s firing midway of the season. Under the new presence of Nate McMillan, they crashed into the playoff picture as the fifth-seeded team of the East, kicking the New York Knicks in five and outlasting the Joel Embiid-led Philadelphia 76ers in a lopsided 2nd round, seven-game war. Unfortunately, they came up short against the eventual champion Milwaukee Bucks — putting up a good fight in spite of the lack of playoff experience amongst the majority of their players.
Young spearheaded the Hawks, putting up some astounding numbers in his first playoff journey — an average of 28.8 points, 2.8 rebounds, 9.5 assists in 16 occasions. The quote below by Williams way back in June this year justified Young’s phenomenal potential, as the legendary reserve is truly honored to work with him.
“He’s a monster. This dude is a monster. It’ll be one of those things when I look back when he’s a hall of famer, an established superstar in this league and I can say I was a part of that process and I worked with this gentleman. Seeing Trae up close and the things that he’s able to accomplish and the things he’s been able to do on the floor night in and night out at such a young age with the poise he has, the swag he has, the confidence he has and his abilities, I’m just proud to be a part of it. He listens to me and I try to help him as much as I can with little tidbits. Just seeing him night in and night out, I’m extremely happy for him. I’m proud of him and I’m happy to call him my teammate.”Lou Williams on Trae Young
In response, Trae’s father, Rayford Young, tipped his hat off on Williams as a token of gratitude for the guidance it gave, even claiming that he is the best veteran for his son.
“The best vet Trae has had “hands down.” No knock against the guys before him, but the conversations on & off the court with Lou Will have been career-changing. He’s told me Lou is the most humble ‘successful’ player he’s ever played with.”
For as long as Young will remain under the wings of Sweet Lou, things are good to go for familiarization and experience. Indeed, they are matched up in terms of play style and physical traits — expect for more indelible moments coming from the former Oklahoma State standout on his way to all-time greatness.