After taking a look at half a dozen draft prospects on May 28, the Los Angeles Lakers invited another six young players for draft workouts three days later. Among them, was a big man with an interesting skillset — Purdue’s Trevion Williams.
Williams fell to the second round in draft projections after losing his spot in the starting lineup to sophomore Zach Edey in 2021-22 — and finished his senior year averaging 12.0 points, 7.4 rebounds and 3.0 assists. However, the 6-foot-10 forward has made a name of himself as an excellent rebounder, ending his college career with the fourth-most offensive boards (353) in Big Ten history.
Williams has also shown he can stretch the floor, shooting 35.7% from downtown — although on a low volume, attempting just 0.4 triples a game.
The 21-year-old said his shooting range was definitely something he wanted to show in his sixth draft workout of the spring. “Purdue is heavy on throwing the ball in. Coach stresses it all the time,” Williams said.
“So it was always run to the block and go get a bucket. That’s how our offense was. It’s a little tough making that transition, but something I’ve worked on. Something I’ve worked for. Always could shoot it is just about repetition, getting reps up, and just being good at it.”
Williams said he got to work on his passing last season, trying to set up Purdue star and top-five prospect Jaden Ivey for buckets. The forward added he and Ivey showed some “really good connection” in games throughout the season.
“Obviously, he’s one of the guys that had the ball in his hands most of the time,” Wiliams said. “So a lot of times it will come from a place of like, allow me to kind of put you in a position to be successful.
“I would say I’m pretty good passer. So, I’ve used that to my advantage. And a lot of times throughout the year, me and J have had really good connections, where there’s me assisting him or whatever it is.”
Approaching the workout with the Lakers, Williams said he tried “not to overdo it,” understanding it’s difficult to present a complete skillset in pre-draft showings. And even though attending back-to-back workouts can be challenging, the forward has been enjoying the process — as he could see some of the places around the country, including L.A., for the first time.
“I put it in the work and I prepare myself for this, so it’s been a little tough, obviously, because you’ve got workouts back-to-back, but the bright side is you can see different places.
“Before this, I had never been to L.A., so you get to see you get to visit and see other places so that’s kind of the upside. You just got to find a way to have fun with your work. That’s what I’ve done. I’ve been out and kind of seen some of the beaches around here … it’s been great to get around to places.”
Keon Ellis wants to follow path of former Alabama teammate Herb Jones
In the previous round of workouts, the Lakers had a chance to assess Alabama’s Keon Ellis, who made the SEC All-Defensive Team during his senior year.
Ellis said he could see himself following a similar path to his former teammate Herb Jones, who emerged as one of the best young 3-and-D wings during his rookie season with the New Orleans Pelicans.
“Honestly, a lot of the things like Herb [Jones] did,” Ellis said of his game. “Guarding the top guys and making it tough on them, spacing the floor. I do think I can be a better spaced-creator, if you will.
“I definitely think, kind of the same role as [Jones] to make it tough on guys, kind of the dirty work, harassing the ball and passing lanes, stuff like that. I think that will be something that I’m good at and can contribute at the next level.”
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