TUCSON, Ariz. - Arizona Wildcat forward Derrick Williams and Miami Heat star LeBron James both kept us from the decision-making process.
Both weighed pros and cons of where they'd land over the course of a few weeks, nobody on the outside really knew what was going to happen and in the end they decided to take their talents, well, elsewhere.
That's about where the similarities end, and for the sake of Williams, phew.
"All the UA fans are happy for me," Williams said at his final press conference as a Wildcat on Wednesday, in front of just a couple media members and streamed online.
And his press conference, unlike LeBron's, came exactly a week after his decision, which came out not through a money-grubbing television show that was layered with "I'm giving money to kids, I'm a good person," sentiment, but a general press release through the school's athletic department.
"Everybody is happy for me," said Williams, a quite different scene than the Cleveland Cavaliers fans and their bitterly broken hearts. "Nothing but, ‘thank you for everything, Derrick. Thanks for bringing us back to the national spotlight.'
"I think they understand," he added. "If your'e a real basketball fan ... they know what situation I'm in right now. If you have a chance to make money to do something that you love, hopefully one day I won't have to work. This is my job."
It's a business decision, essentially. He's still 19-years-old. He has hardly dipped into the college coursework of a future grad, but he promised his mom he'd get it done in the upcoming years, in between NBA seasons. He knows he's giving up part of his youth, in effect, but he says he's ready.
Maybe the Cavs fans will end up with Williams, a far cry from James in how he's humble -- does LeBron know this word -- introverted, and genuine.
Anyway, here's a couple other notable quotes from Williams presser.
On playing with a broken finger for the NCAA Tournament and keeping it under wraps:
On talking to Los Angeles Lakers forward Luke Walton and especially Steve Kerr about his decision:
On his future position at the next level:
I’m not going to say I will average 20 and eight like I did this season. I’m not LeBron, I’m not J.R. Smith. But I can jump, I can shoot. I can do basically everything a good player can do.
They say I’m like a Tweener or something. Big Baby on the Celtics, he plays center. You see that all throughout the league. Really doesn’t matter. I’d prefer to play the 3. You think like a power forward, you think like a Chris Bosh a Pau Gasol, 6-10, 6-11.
I think a lot of teams, they need a 6-9 player that can shoot, dribble, drive, pick-and-pop.
On becoming famous and dealing with the life consequences:
On what his first purchase will be: