Former Arizona Wildcat Derrick Williams, a potential No. 1 overall pick in the draft, is at the NBA draft combine in Chicago, where he met with the media Thursday.
One thing he wanted to make clear is that he considers himself more of a perimeter player, despite his college resume, where he mostly was used in the post for the past two seasons.
“I’m not a power forward. I want to clear that up,” said Williams, who was listed by Arizona at 6-foot-8 and 241 pounds. “I’m a small forward that can play the four. …
“I’m not going to get away from being in the post if I have a mismatch. That’s what I did this season. I had a lot of mismatches. If I have a slower guy on me, I’m going to take him outside and drive past him. If I have a smaller guy on me, I’m going to be able to post him up.”
Williams did develop a killer 3-point shot last season as a sophomore, hitting 56.8 percent (42 of 74).
“I’m just a lot more skilled than people think I am,” Williams said.
He was asked if he felt comfortable from NBA range:
“Really comfortable,” he said.
Williams is not doing any drills at the camp, saying that his sophomore season basically speaks for itself right now, but he will be happy to do whatever is needed when teams bring him in for individual workouts.
Williams, while mostly soft-spoken, came across as extremely confident in the above video, saying he thought he was the best player in the draft, the most NBA-ready, and that his goal is to win NBA Rookie of the Year honors.
“I’m not cocky or anything,” he said. “But that’s the main focus right now is to win Rookie of the Year.”
He did stop short, however, of any LeBron James comparisons. James’ old team, the Cleveland Cavaliers, have the No. 1 pick in the draft. If the Cavs take Williams over Duke point guard Kyrie Irving and others, Williams figures it might be best to not be the next No. 23 in Cleveland.
“Obviously, I’m going to have to change my college number,” he said with a laugh. “But if they have me as a pick, big shoes to fill.”