Ninth-year, 6-1 All-Star PG Maurice “Mo” Williams has delivered off the bench for the Clippers in the absence of top gun Chris Paul, who’s been sidelined for five straight games with a strained left hamstring. Williams scored 25+ points in his last three consecutive games.
Williams added 26 big ones to the scoreboard during last week’s thrilling 91-89 win over the reigning NBA World Champion Dallas Mavericks. Though his 25-point contribution wasn’t enough to lift L.A. to another W in Friday’s nail-biter against the Timberwolves, Williams sank another 26 points in Sunday’s solid 103-91 victory over the Raptors.
When the Cavaliers acquired Williams from the Bucks in 2008, he started at the point guard position alongside LeBron James. “Mo Gotti” put up some big numbers at the end of Cleveland’s heyday and was integral in helping his teammates achieve a franchise-best, league-leading 66–16 record in 2008–09 and top the standings again in the 2009-10 season with 61 wins.
On February 24, 2011, Williams was traded to the Los Angeles Clippers along with Jamario Williamson in exchange for Baron Davis and a first round pick in the 2011 NBA Draft. But Williams had to take a backseat after the arrival of Chris Paul and Chauncey Billups in December. Williams loves to play, so I’m sure it’s been a challenge for him to adjust to his new role of backup point guard.
Nevertheless, the veteran reserve is doing his part to help the Clips contend this season. Williams is averaging 14.5 ppg in 27 minutes and boasts a 91.3% shooting percentage from the free throw line. He also pulls down a couple rebounds and dishes out some dimes. It’s hard to say how long Williams’ double digit hot streak will last, but Coach Vinny Del Negro will certainly continue to be cautious about returning Paul to the lineup and will limit his minutes until he’s 100%.
The Clippers play three games this week starting with a crosstown showdown against the Lakers on Wednesday the 25th at 10:30 PM ET.