When it comes to the North Carolina Tar Heels and the NBA Draft, a lot of talk has revolved around Coby White, Nassir Little, and Cameron Johnson. This attention isn’t unwarranted — all three players are projected to go in the first round, and White is currently projected to go in the top seven. However, so far this spring we had not heard much from UNC graduates Luke Maye and Kenny Williams. While it’s still unclear what Luke Maye is currently up to, Kenny Williams has been grinding hard to attempt to launch his professional basketball career.
While the NBA Draft Combine is the workout process that gets a large amount of the attention, there are other ways for players to get their names out there. One of those is the Pro Basketball Combine, which was held at the Mamba Sports Academy this past Tuesday and Wednesday. So far, over 50% of the players that went through this particular combine landed a NBA/G-League deal, and every former participant earned some type of professional basketball contract.
Earlier this month, it was announced that Kenny Williams had plans to participate in the PBC. News broke Tuesday night that he had an incredible Session 2 performance, with a final stat line of 22 points and 3 rebounds. As far as his efficiency goes, he made 8/9 of his shots from the field, and made five of his six three-point attempts.
In both Sessions 1 and 2, Williams’ three-point chart looked like this:
Left Corner: 4/5
Left Wing: 3/5
Top of Key: 3/5
Right Wing: 3/5
Right Corner: 3/5
Overall NBA Three-Pointer Percentage: 64%
Williams’ shooting performance during workouts was really impressive, and a huge step up from his senior year at Carolina. During his final season, Williams only made 29% of his three-point attempts, with his best shooting performance coming from his 18-point performance against Duke on Senior Night. If he can continue showing that this past season was an anomaly and that he has the same capabilities that he displayed his junior year, he has a fair chance of drawing some attention from NBA personnel.
During the PBC, the players also went through the usual combine drills. Here is how Williams performed:
Agility: 11.39 seconds
Sprint: 3.34 seconds
Shuttle: 2.38 seconds
No Step Vert: 32.0 inches
Max Vert: 38.5 inches
What jumps out immediately when looking at Williams’ results is his max vertical leap. His mark of 38.5 inches tied Nassir Little’s performance in the NBA Draft Combine, and had he performed at that venue he would’ve tied for 5th best with Little, Devon Dotson, Terance Mann, Jalen Nowell, and Miye Oni. However, his agility, spring, and shuttle numbers aren’t particularly great when compared to the NBA Combine field, which made his performance in the scrimmages that much more important.
If Kenny Williams can find a way to land a NBA G-League contract, he will be afforded the same opportunity that Theo Pinson had to excel over the field and hopefully find a home in the NBA. It will be extremely difficult to pull off from the current position that he is in, but even if he can’t get picked up for the G-League, he has a great chance to have a successful career playing basketball overseas. Seeing what road the Basketball Gods take him down next should be exciting, and June 20th couldn’t get here soon enough.